Wednesday, October 21, 2009
The Plover is a Mellifluous Bird
Rereading The Third Policeman, I am reminded of a quality of gloriously manic indirection which, let me suggest, lies close to the heart of Mylesian comedy - a quality on which, it strikes me, I too have all too often had cause to draw, in the sad and monotonous prosecution of my daily routine. I come down in the morning to feed the cats and find you, for instance, a total stranger, sitting in my kitchen, but being of a nervous disposition I hold off from asking you what exactly you are doing there. There must, I assume, be some other way of eliciting this information. Such as asking you every conceivable other question possible in the English language. For example (sample answers supplied):
Are you not in fact Maolseachlainn Ó hIfearnáin, from a long line of Maolseachlainn Ó hIfearnáins, known for the manly vigour of your countertenor vibrato and your love of the corncrake of Inishbofin?
I am told the 46a will bring you there direct.
Is your wife not Assumpta Mullarkey of the County Wicklow, known to the authorities for worrying ewes?
It was generally thought his tattoos were ill-becoming of the bishop’s station.
What if any are the connections between the Hebridean isle of Mingulay and notorious Nazi war criminal Josef Mengele?
Though my great-uncle Paddy would drunkenly boast of having invented the croissant, I dismissed these claims with outright contempt.
What are your credentials in the field of ailments of the urinary tract?
The plover is a mellifluous bird.
Is it not true that your researches in the field of turf-powered self-brewing tea have come to nothing?
A brisk of walk of four to five miles, before breakfast.
What are the practical advantages of driving blindfolded?
I have never cared for cinnamon.
Why is your ferret doing that?
The Central African Republic has struggled to impose itself on the world stage.
Is it not the case that shaving one side only of the face, though a razor-saving measure, leads ultimately to ridicule?
The south island in particular is remarkable for its mangrove swamps.
How do you assess reaction to your proposed revisions of the Bolivian flag?
Ministers of the Eucharist are increasingly hard to come by.
Is a sonata for inaudible dog whistle not a pointless endeavour?
By the end the hovercraft had become an embarrassment.
Would you care to say a few words on the influence on your life and thought of the works of pontiff Sixtus V?
It is widely acknowledged that my cat possesses an exemplary set of whiskers.
I could do this all day, and in fact frequently do. Ask me a question in the comments stream and I’ll supply another answer in the same vein. I presume if I do it enough this interweb thing will get the knack and just keep on going itself.