Our guests are cordially invited to remember that it is a breach of mensal etiquette to fribble or frolic during the dinner hour, or audibly to emit bodily effluvium from any source whatsoever; and nary an infraction of the rules will be tolerated if the whole unruly, stinking lot of you expects to get any dessert again tonight!
I get a little frisson of anticipation every time I think of what Hollywood has in store for us hapless cinephiles in the years and decades to come: an unending succession of sequels, prequels and rifacimenti of such blue chip franchises as "Star Wars" and "Weekend at Bernie's".
After learning that the shares his mother had left him in the Bulgarian National Railway Company were not considered by the Mafia to be fungible with the blue chip stocks that had been specified, Jonathan began the tardigrade -- if not Sisyphean -- task of repaying his loan (at its "variable" interest rate) in weekly instalments from his earnings.
Granddad was an inveterate gambler, but not very good at cards, and I'll always remember the expression on Grandmother's face when she realized she'd arrived from the kitchen too late to thwart his placement of her remaining blue chip stock certificates on the table in a wager, a look which prompted him to this philosophocal ploce: "Kid, there's bad luck, and then there's BAD luck."
In the hotels of Davos, at a certain season of the year, one may observe great gaggles of economic standpats and political eminences grises, and although they have flown hither from a number of diverse breeding grounds around the globe, what they have in common goes far deeper than their somber plumage and the distinctive spider-vein markings that one may detect on the exposed portions of their hides.
"Ho, ho!" chortled the guidance counsellor, who loved nothing so much as a playful round of badinage with a student, "now that I've reported your diagnosis of tennis elbow to Stanford, and they have withdrawn their offer of an athletic scholarship, your lackadaisical attitude toward your academic studies over the last four years virtually ensures that you will be attending some penny-ante community college in the fall!"
"If Your Majesty deems I have four-flushed him in cards, then I must acknowledge my guilt and most humbly declare myself penitent," sniveled the miserable courtier, who felt that his backbone was succumbing to osteopenia in direct proportion to the number of palace guards who were hastening into the game room to form a phalanx in his near vicinity.
If the volcano-god's edacity was insatiable, it had at least the virtue of gender neutrality; the poker-faced priests selected both dainty damsels and tender, ephebic lads to be trussed and prodded up to the lip of its terrible maw.
"Your Horace has turned into quite the bellygod since he retired," Mrs. Jawls lectured her sister, "yawping for disgusting, undercooked steaks and chops, morning, noon and night, and I think you only infantilize him when you cater to his sanguinary whims."
"I've just perfected the most utile invention EVER, and all thanks to a 400 billion euro subsidy from the EU," exulted the Swiss bellygod, as he bounced around the dining hall on tiptoe, pausing to slurp down fistfulls of spaghetti alle vongole that seemed to hover and slither a few centimeters above his dinner plate, "-- a means of extracting from my victuals all their Higgs bosons, which turn out not to be an irremediably integrant part of the recipe!"
[corrected version] "Louis," said the Queen, "let's just say I am left less than gruntled by that blighter Richelieu's syllogism that a) any woman who takes pleasure in her dinner is a bellygod like unto the Whore of Babylon, b) WE are a woman who happens to appeciate fine cuisine, and c) THEREFORE -- dot dot dot !!"
"Louis," said the Queen, "let's just say I am left less than gruntled by that blighter Richelieu's syllogism that a) any woman who takes pleasure in her dinner is a godbelly like unto the Whore of Babylon, b) WE are a woman who happens to appeciate fine cuisine, and c) THEREFORE -- dot dot dot !!"
The esplanade along the beach at Cannes is a delightful venu for an afternnoon stroll, but be wary of the approaches of the moustachioed young dandy who doubles as a pick-pocket, or the garrulous makebate who tries to tries to stir up civil strife by insinuating that Tarantino is a greater auteur of the cinema than Truffaut.
I offered to vouchsafe one of my tickets for the lecture on Christian temperance down at the lyceum to that silly hobbledehoy who cleans our pool, but in his panglossian simplicity he told me that God must have wanted us to drink, else why did He make liquor taste so good and render our senses so delightfully tipsy?
I'm so sorry, captain, that there will be no whales on view during this safari in the Kalahari Desert, and I truly regret that you misapprehended our brochure; however, I do know where there is a dilly of a dead hippopotamus behind that inselberg over there, and you are free to flense its carcass to your heart's content while the rest of us stay right here and have lunch, if you can stand the rather skunky fragrance of its "blubber".
Quadrivial Quandary (QQ) is owned and operated by Rudi Seitz.
Sentences submitted to QQ are the property of their authors. See our page on Copyright Information for details.
Dictionary definitions are the property of their respective sources, presented here via public RSS feeds or otherwise with permission.
All other material is copyright 2015 by Rudi Seitz, all rights reserved.
Use of this site is governed by our terms of service.
Contact: rudi at quadrivialquandary dot com.