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delirium
Anatole Beaucanard?

He's mentioned in Allais' text Absinthes.
Can't find anything about him from the web.
L'Assommoir
I don't think that is a real name.

Beau + canard
'canard' (duck) is a French slang for newspaper, by implication a badly written one. The English equivalent would be a 'rag' paper.

so beaucanard, in context, would be a bad, worthless hack writer.

QUOTE
Specifically, the term Canard refers to a tactic used by a parent duck to deceptively draw a predator away from its offspring or nest by quacking and feigning a broken wing. In other words the "Canard" or "Duck" is lying.

http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/canard


Artemis
That's what it is, a hack. In the poem (never saw it before - pretty damn good stuff) Victor Hugo and any old hack are equal in the eyes of the worms in the ground who will split them atom by atom as the water splits the tablet of sugar. That Allais be trippin!

– Garçon... une absinthe au sucre !
Amusant, ce morceau de sucre qui fond tout doucement sur la petite grille... Histoire de la goutte d'eau qui creuse le granit... seulement sucre moins dur que le granit... Heureusement... voyez-vous : absinthe au granit ?
Absinthe au granit... ah ah ah ah... ah ah ah... Bien rigolo... absinthe au granit... faudrait pas être pressé... ah ah ah...
Presque fondu maintenant, le morceau de sucre... Ce que c'est de nous... Image frappante de l'homme, le morceau de sucre...
Quand serons morts, nous en irons comme ça... atome à atome... molécule à molécule... dissous, délités, rendus au Grand Tout par la gracieuse intervention des végétaux et des vers de terre.
Serons bien plus heureux alors... Victor Hugo et Anatole Beaucanard égaux devant l'Asticot... Heureusement !
Sale temps... Mauvaise journée... Directeur idiot... Éditeur bête à pleurer...
Et puis... peut-être pas tant de talent que ça, au fond.
C'est bon, l'absinthe... pas la première gorgée, mais après.
C'est bon.

Waiter ... an absinthe with sugar!
Entertaining, this morsel of sugar that rests gently at the bottom of the little grille
The story of the drop of water that erodes granite ... it's just that sugar is less hard than than granite ... Fortunately
You see: absinthe with granite?
Absinthe with granite ah ah ah ah ah ah ah...
Very funny ... absinthe with granite ... wouldn't do to be in a hurry ... ah ah ah
Almost melted now, the morsel of sugar... that's how it is with us... Striking image of man, the morsel of sugar...
When we are dead, we shall go just like that - atom by atom - molecule by molecule - dissolved, split, turned into the Great Everything by the gracious intervention of the plants and worms of the earth
Very much happier then ... Victor Hugo and Anatole Beaucanard equal in the eyes of the Maggot ... Fortunately!
Foul weather ... bad day... idiot boss ... pathetically stupid editor...
And then ... perhaps not so much talent as that, at the bottom.
It is good, absinthe, not at the first sip, but after.
It is good.
Artemis
Whenever you see "canard" ...
It is a duck, but it's also a joke, going back supposedly to a joke about two men competing at selling live ducks, lowering their prices to undercut each other, until one went lower than he could afford to go, but put the fine print under his price: "for half a duck".
delirium
Wow. Thanks again for sharing your knowledge.
Artemis
Thanks for discovering that text. I had never heard of it.
I knew that "canard" often involves a joke or something other than a duck, but I had never heard the original joke until I was researching to answer your post, so I learned something also.
The text is longer than I quoted, as you know.
I'll translate the rest of it eventually. I like it a lot.
delirium
It's already translated, in fact.
Artemis
I found it there earlier today, but didn't read it. I like to do it myself.
Since you mentioned it, I had a look at it.
It leaves a lot to be desired, to put it kindly.
delirium
Oh, I'd be eager to read another translation. I don't understand much French.
Artemis
I've edited what I already posted considerably. I had made some translation mistakes as well as some of interpretation (the two aren't necessarily the same thing), such as the whole granite/sugar business which at first I didn't understand, to be honest. It's not exactly easy to translate.
It's not a poem after all, but an excerpt from a novel (I think). I'm not as impressed with it as I was at first glance. It seems to be a writer bitching about not getting published more than anything else.
But I'll probably work on the rest of it.
The translation you linked has English phrases that are not found in the French at all, and some French phrases are ignored, and liberties were taken that shouldn't have been, such as "on the rocks". That might be a quip an English writer would make when musing upon absinthe and granite, but the French writer didn't. I'm pretty sure the French have never used "on the rocks" to mean ice, and he wasn't talking about ice anyway, but sugar.
Artemis
Okay, here's the whole thing. For sure it's not perfect, but it's close enough to get the sense of it.
The French can be seen elsewhere, so I left it out.
It seems to be about a man's attitude being adjusted by the notorious brainwash elixir. He progresses from absinthe with sugar to anisated (??? - I don't know - an anisey absinthe, or absinthe with anisette, or what), to absinthe straight.
I didn't bother trying to duplicate precisely the placement of phrases, much less the dots. This guy is the Seurat of writers. He's probably making dots in hell.
I apologize for the unusual font, but the board often doesn't understand MS Word format, and I'm tired of fucking with it trying to make it right.

Five o'clock ...
Foul weather ... gray ... devilishly strong melancholy gray
Therefore a good downpour will not fall to force all the fools who walk around looking stupid to go home! ... Foul weather ...
A bad day today, name of God! Rotten luck ...
Supplement refused ... politely

- Excellent, your supplement ... interesting subject ... well-written, but not in the spirit of the paper.
The spirit of the paper! ... Pretty, the spirit of the paper! The most stupid paper in Paris and the Seine-et Oise!
Absent-minded busy editor

Return the gentleman's manuscript... Your novel is excellent ... interesting subject ... well-written, but you understand ...business is not good at all ... overloaded and couldn't you create something in the style of Grande Marnière?
Easy sale ...
award.
Set out with a friendly and stupid air:
- It will be for another time...

Foul weather .. half past five o'clock
The boulevards!... Let us take to the boulevards ... maybe I'll meet friends...
Pretty, the friends!... All the muffs ... Can anybody in Paris be depended upon?
They are rather ugly, all these people who pass!
And badly dressed up, the women!... And stupid looking, the men!

Waiter ... an absinthe with sugar!
Entertaining, this morsel of sugar that rests gently at the bottom of the little grille
The story of the drop of water that erodes granite ... it's just that sugar is less hard than than granite ... Fortunately
You see: absinthe with granite?
Absinthe with granite ah ah ah ah ah ah ah...
Very funny ... absinthe with granite ... wouldn't do to be in a hurry ... ah ah ah
Almost melted now, the morsel of sugar... that's how it is with us... Striking image of man, the morsel of sugar...
When we are dead, we shall go just like that - atom by atom - molecule by molecule - dissolved, split, turned into the Great Everything by the gracious intervention of the plants and worms of the earth
Very much happier then ... Victor Hugo and Anatole Beaucanard equal in the eyes of the Maggot ... Fortunately!
Foul weather ... bad day... idiot boss ... pathetically stupid editor...
And then ... perhaps not so much talent as that, at the bottom.
It is good, absinthe, not at the first sip, but after.
It is good.

Six o'clock... Very slowly the boulevards come alive.. Alright, now the women!
Prettier than a moment ago and smarter! Looking less moronic than the men!
The sky is still grey ... a pretty pearl grey ...the end of tone ... the setting sun gives the clouds pretty pale copper colors... And it is very good ...
Waiter - an anisated absinthe!
It's entertaining, the absinthe with sugar, but zut .. it takes too long

Six thirty ...
These women passing by!... Almost all pretty ... and therefore strange!
And mysterious!
From where do they come?... Where do they go?... Will they ever know?...
It's barely if they look at me at all .. me who loves them so much!
Each in passing, gives me such an impression that it seems to me that I shall never forget it
As soon as they have disappeared, I can no longer remember what they looked like.
Fortunately those who come afterward are even better.
I would love them so much if they wanted ... but they all leave... Shall I ever see them again?

On the sidewalk, in front of me, hawkers sell everything ... newspapers ...cigar cases made of celluloid ... little plush monkeys ... in all colors ...
What are these men?... Crushers of life, without doubt, probably neglected geniuses...
recalcitrants... As the eyes are deep... What somber fire in their pupils

To create a book thereupon ... unique ... unforgettable ... a book that all of them would be forced to buy ... all of them!
Oh! all these women!...
Why doesn't even one of them get the idea of sitting with me, embracing me very softly ... fondling me ... cradling me as mamma did when I was little?...
Waiter, an absinthe straight ... Don't be afraid to do it
...
Artemis
Here's an analysis of the thing that goes into great detail. It was published in 1992. Allais died in 1905.
http://books.google.com/books?id=vImUcuv7d...%27existence%22
delirium
What is that obscure script, is it language?
Oui, Mr. Dee. It must be the language of angels.
delirium
From the Daedalus book of Absinthe:
"'Une absinthe anisée' was an absinthe with extra anis, while 'une bourgeoise' or 'une panachée' was an absinthe with extra anisette cordial."
Artemis
Yah, the commentary is harder to read than the text.
What with all the discs and isotopes, it looks like an index of radwaste storage.
Google (did I remember to say fuck you very much, Google?) this morning says I have reached my "limit" for looking at the image of the text. Of course, I know ways around this, but here is the "reason" given after pressing the "WHY?" button:
QUOTE
It's like going to a bookstore and browsing — with a Google twist.

This after explaining that their goal is to get people to buy the book or go to a library for it!!
If a bookstore imposed a "twist", straight out of the book of assholes, that prevented me from looking inside the book in the hope of forcing me to buy it - yeah, that's a brilliant method. Morons.
Thanks for the reference. Sounds nasty. Maybe it was a way of making crapsinthe more drinkable. But that explanation introduces the question of how the extra anise was added when NOT from a separate anise liquor. Anise extract? I think most of us would agree that a well-made absinthe doesn't need extra anything but water, so obviously a lot of crapsinthe was being sold, and/or a lot of anise whores were running around Paris who didn't recognize good absinthe when it was in front of them.
Artemis
wacko.gif
thegreenimp
QUOTE(Artemis @ Aug 28 2014, 08:28 AM) *
Thanks for the reference. Sounds nasty. Maybe it was a way of making crapsinthe more drinkable. But that explanation introduces the question of how the extra anise was added when NOT from a separate anise liquor. Anise extract? I think most of us would agree that a well-made absinthe doesn't need extra anything but water, so obviously a lot of crapsinthe was being sold, and/or a lot of anise whores were running around Paris who didn't recognize good absinthe when it was in front of them.


From the 1944 Herbsaint Booklet:
Click to view attachment

My understanding was back in the day, Anisette was used to sweeten absinthe, instead of sugar. (It's also on the label of that surviving '34 Jung & Wulff Absinthe bottle

Also on the first Legendre Absinthe poster, the original Legendre Absinthe Frappé used Benedictine as a likely sweetening agent, before they printed the Anisette recipe. I don't really find the old Granny's Purse ever needed sweetening, but it must have had a following in old NOLA.

Legendre made this too:

Click to view attachment
Artemis
Okay, we already know that Herbsaint tasted better than most absinthe all by itself. It certainly was neither bitter nor had any flavor that needed covering up. But it still could be the case that there were products that needed such; maybe so much so that the practice grew from those and became general, habitual, even with better products. Maybe it was the same for sugar. And granite.
Artemis
QUOTE
'une bourgeoise' or 'une panachée' was an absinthe with extra anisette cordial

I always thought absinthe Bourgeois (the brand in the black cat posters) was either named for a family (it was my grandma's name), or it purported to be the absinthe of the common people. Now I wonder if it was extra anisey absinthe.
L'Assommoir
Allais is writing in 1885, and MCD and others have said that the slotted absinthe spoons did not come into popular use until the later 1880's.

So I imagine that dissolving a rock hard lump of sugar, cut from a loaf, on a regular spoon must have extra tedious.
Artemis
Excellent observation.
thegreenimp
I'd bet Absinthe and Anisette were more popular in old NOLA in a Frappé, since no photos have ever surfaced of sugar cubes and spoons being used in any bar photos back in the day. (The only old absinthe drinking image ever seen from old NOLA was that 1919 O. A. H. News Reel)

Plus Ojen was a popular Krewe drink for a longtime, probably why Marion Legendre made Anisette right after repeal.

'34 Jung & Wulff absinthe label: Click to view attachment
Artemis
It's more than likely to me that absinthe in New Orleans was so strictly a "French" thing (and not even a French descent thing, but a thing for people who had actually been in France between the time Allais wrote that text and WWI), and a short-lived thing, that it barely got any publicity in town (New Orleans was pretty well Americanized by then), much less outside of town, and that's why we can't find much of anything in writing about it, or photographs.
Degas lived in New Orleans for five months in 1872, but he never (as far as I know) painted any absinthe scenes there, and it's not because he didn't walk around looking at everything. He painted the cotton exchange.
1IPB Image
thegreenimp
Marion Legendre mentions the Cotton Exchange in 1959:

Click to view attachment

Legendre may have kept the whole absinthe in NOLA thing alive by accident, when he decided to get into the booze business.
The other two New Orleans distillers that made absinthe long before Legendre got into the game, abandoned it by 1940-41.

Artemis
Early 19th century - that was before it became a thing even in France, with the spoons and fountains and trappings. Absynthe must have been more or less medicinal, at least in the same way as the original cocktails served in pharmacies were. The specific mention of the frappe (not the drip) goes toward confirming my suspicion the absinthe "scene" in New Orleans was something different than in France, except maybe for a brief time just before the ban.
And I have to question how much Legendre even knew about 1859 in 1959. There's a lot of urbanlegendary crap in New Orleans history as told by New Orleans residents, especially those with something to promote.
thegreenimp
J.M. Legendre had two stories, the pr one, and the real story. Both sort of overlapped in places, but an apt description from someone I know, who knew him, was "Raconteur".

Legendre probably found that old newspaper ad, (or William Wisdom did…) for the Absinthe Manufacturers Association, PR. Legendre, eventually took over as the frontman when Wulff, and Yochim, started fading out of the scene. (Ray and B.J. have a copy of that ad in their giant collection of absinthe stuff)

The Absinthe Frappé if legend is correct, originated in NOLA at that place with all the damn football helmets, probably because of the climate. It probably took off that way in NOLA simply because it was cold, and tasted good. Plus we tend to like iced drinks in this part of the world.
Artemis
Agreed.
It's too damned hot to wait for something.
It's the sort of place you want a drink COLD and NOW.
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