Thursday, 10 December 1998

My joke job is a cracker

A CHRISTMAS cracker-maker has had to hire a joke checker - because Americans don't get our gags. The new recruit has to weed out "peculiarly English" jokes after complaints from U.S. distributors. Gags they didn't get include:

Q: What mint can't you eat?
A: The Royal Mint.

Q: Where do policemen live?
A: Letsbe Avenue.

Q: Which panto is set in a chemist's shop?
A: Puss in Boots.

Boss Keith Langford, 30, of Absolutely Crackers in Milton Keynes, Bucks, said: "We don't want to upset the Americans. We do a lot of business with them."

Published in The Sun (UK)
10 December 1998

Thursday, 30 July 1998

Solved our place setting, favour and decoration problems in one - Feedback

Thought you might like to hear how we solved our place setting, favour and decoration problems in one. The answer is Wedding Crackers! We ordered them through email and telephone from a company called Absolutely Crackers. We always have loads of crackers at Christmas (on Xmas eve, Xmas day and Boxing day), so I know my family just love them. Our colour scheme is green, white and silver so our crackers are silver with white roses, green leaves and ribbons at either end. They come in silver, white, red or gold, with white, pink or gold roses, green or white leaves and white or pink ribbons. Absolutely Crackers supplied them to us with 5 white sugared almonds in each, tied only at one end. I raided the web for quotes on love and marriage, romantic, funny and cynical and have given each guest a unique quote. We've stuck on little white labels, with people's names written in silver, and these will be the place markers for people so they know where to sit. I'm sure some people will think this is a really strange idea, but I love them, and I think they look very effective. I can't wait to see people's faces when they read the quotes we have chosen. Sarah

Sarah Parkinson, Cambridge, England. 30th July 1998

Tom Smith to Close - What the Papers Say

A Century of Christmas cracker production in Norwich is coming to a close, with the loss of over 170 jobs. Tom Smith Crackers, founded by cracker inventor Tom Smith, is closing after the loss of a major customer and several other smaller customers.
Daily Mirror, 30th July 1998

Royal Cracker Company to Close - The Christmas cracker firm that has supplied the Royal Family with paper hats, novelties and excruciating jokes for almost a century is to close.
Only a small group of Tom Smith staff who roll up the Queen's crackers by hand know their contents and are sworn to secrecy. All that has been given away is that the crackers bound for Sandringham conceal "small but valuable" gifts. None of the mottos or corny riddles that leave royal diners groaning have ever been revealed. Disappointment was expected at Buckingham Palace last night but officials were still awaiting confirmation of the closure. A spokesman for the Tom Smith Crackers said: "I have no doubt that the Royal Family will be very disappointed. They always write thanking us for the Christmas crackers that we provide for them every year and it has always been an important part of our company tradition.
Sunday Telegraph, 26th July 1998

Your Crackers Have Gone Bang, Ma'am - Around 175 workers will lose their jobs at Tom Smith Crackers, of Norwich, Norfolk, when it closes later this year. The company has made the Royal crackers since 1906 - and one of the workers' last tasks will be to hand-make a special, farewell batch. A company spokesman said: "Generations of Royals have worn our Christmas paper hats and laughed at our jokes. We deliver them to all the Royal palaces. "The staff are always sworn to secrecy about the contents and I have no doubt the family will be very disappointed we are closing. They always write thanking us."
Sunday Mirror, 26th July 1998

The Party's Over - Britain's best-known maker of Christmas crackers is to close after 150 years. More than 170 people will lose their jobs at Norwich-based Tom Smith Crackers
Daily Record, 24th July 1998

The firm that invented the Christmas cracker 150 years ago, Tom Smith Crackers of Norwich, announced it is closing with the loss of 175 jobs. The pound has all but seen off its export business.
Daily Mail, 24th July 1998

Tuesday, 16 June 1998

Going Crackers in Hawaii - Feedback

What can I say except, thank you! They were such a great hit with everyone. I used the crackers to give away the centrepiece. In one cracker I placed a pink fishing lure in and whoever had that lure in their cracker won the centrepiece for their table. The winners then had to put the crowns on but everyone who had one put it on and several of them were wearing it throughout the rest of the evening. People are still talking about our wedding and how much fun they had and we owe part of it to you and your crackers. Thank you again for everything! Colleen.

Colleen M Yoneda, Hawaii, 16th June 1998

Saturday, 6 June 1998

Our Daughter's Fourth July Wedding - Feedback

It is Done! The wedding was beautiful! The weather here heavenly and the accessories (flowers, dresses, food, etc.) were lovely! Giving the crackers as favors was a Huge "hit"!! The paper contents went flying across tables as pop's were heard throughout the room. It added just enough of the Fourth of July to my daughters wedding day. Thank you so much for all the help and correspondence over the past year (or more). I know I will be checking back again for the holidays. Susan

Susan Powell, New York, USA. 6th July 1998