The Best Thing About England AKA Waldo Pancake

In the past, if someone were to ask me, “Hey, Kim. What was the best thing about living in England?” I would turn to them and reply sharply, “Can’t you see that I’m busy right now?”

And then I’d roll my eyes at whoever was standing nearby as if to say, “get a load of that guy,” and then continue doing whatever it was that I was doing.

When I was finished whatever it was that I was doing* and I had regained my composure, I would then turn to the person, give them a “dressing down” about interrupting someone when they are doing something very important, and then happily tell them the best thing about England.

The best thing about England is not what you may think… not the Queen, or the pubs, or the cheap cheese, or the guys that hang outside the palace with the furry hats and the machine guns with knives on the end.

It was, and is, Waldo Pancake.

Or, more specifically proximity to Waldo Pancake paraphernalia, and proximity to Puccini’s coffee shops, which feature Waldo Pancake’s designs not to mention delicious fair-trade beverages.

Waldo Pancake is the brain-child** and nom de plume of Jim Smith… a man who claims to be, “the most boringly named designer, illustrator and copywriter in the world.”

Jim Smith AKA Waldo Pancake creates “things” with sarcastic and/or witty sayings on them.

Like this:


Sugar does look like salt!

And this:


I love cases with names.

And this:


It’s funny because it’s true.


I’m a big fan (and not just because I’m tall for my age)…

I have collected a lot of Waldo Pancake stuff over the years… coasters (5), tins (6), glasses cases, pens (4), band-aids, pencil cases, mugs (3), magnets (3), notebooks (4), key chains, calendars, books (2)… the list could go on and on.

It used to be that you could only find Waldo Pancake paraphernalia in ol’ Blighty, but I was delighted, nay, overjoyed to see that some Waldo Pancake paraphernalia has made its way to our shores and is available on and

Now, when people ask me what my favorite thing about living in England is, I can roll my eyes, finish whatever it was I was doing, give them a dressing down, and then tell them it’s the cheap cheese.

Job done.


For more information about Waldo Pancake and Jim Smith, visit


* Probably cleaning a bathroom or shaving my legs.

** I love the word brain-child and I’m glad that I got to use it.




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