Don't Eat With Your Mouth Full

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Purging a Pun
"Unter den Linden? How sublime!"

For years I've nursed that multilingual pun, looking for an opportunity to slip it naturally into conversation. "I wonder what Longinus would have made of the Brandenburg Gate?" I might say, a propos of nothing - only to see the other people in the bus queue shuffle warily away. Would anyone feed me a line that would allow me to unsheathe my devastating witticism? Would they heck. It became an albatross round my neck. An albatross called Moby Dick.

Today, in a fit of abandon, I put it up as my Facebook status - but it didn't get so much as a single Like. After that I was forced to face the fact that a) not many people would get the joke, and b) even those that did probably wouldn't find it funny.

Perhaps, in fact, it isn't very funny. There - I've said it.

I admit defeat. Take it. Do with it as you will. Publish it as your own, and make millions - I care not.

God, I feel so much better for that.
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It *is* funny, but that's only if you know that Lindens are limes. (And know enough German to equate unten = sub)

Oh, groan! :op


Preparing your witticisms and waiting for a suitable feed line rarely works. For years I used to describe the family farm in California as "used to be a literal gold-mine", waiting for someone to call me on mis-use of "literal" so I could follow-up with "it's on the Sacramento". Never happened.

What a shame!

I had to think about it for several seconds ...

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:)

I like it! I worked out that Linden must be lime from the context. I've been telling people my Irish/Scottish Gaelic gormless/blue pun (VERY laboured) for a while, but since it depends on mispronunciation at best, it is rarely well-received except through pity.

Ooh, do explain! You're amongst friends here.

(no subject) - slemslempike, 2013-05-13 08:15 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - steepholm, 2013-05-13 08:44 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - slemslempike, 2013-05-13 08:47 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - steepholm, 2013-05-13 08:51 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - ethelmay, 2013-05-13 10:09 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - steepholm, 2013-05-14 07:09 am (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - ashkitty, 2013-05-13 09:04 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - slemslempike, 2013-05-13 08:52 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - kalimac, 2013-05-17 01:24 am (UTC)(Expand)
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(no subject) - slemslempike, 2013-05-13 08:16 pm (UTC)(Expand)
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I think it was Roger Angell who once wrote a piece about a man so hapless at witty party conversation that he laboriously constructed what he pathetically thought was a brilliant bon mot and then saved it up for years, waiting for someone to bring up the possibly unlikely topic of Angela Thirkell in conversation, so that he could then say, "Well, I think Angela Thirkell is a thquare." Bah-dump.

Exactly. I was beginning to feel like a New Yorker short story. Better to be shot of the thing.

(no subject) - houseboatonstyx, 2013-05-16 06:17 am (UTC)(Expand)
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You're very kind - but yes, I struck it down! (I don't purge by halves.)

I would've liked it! I mean, I don't know German but it's easy enough to extrapolate.

LIKE!

I saw it! But didn't get it, because lime = linden is brand new to me. Wikipedia tells me it's a particularly UK thing and isn't one I'd had a need to encounter!

Well, you'll remember it now! It's also a German thing,so you have two for the price of one.

(no subject) - ashkitty, 2013-05-14 02:13 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - steepholm, 2013-05-14 03:05 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - ashkitty, 2013-05-14 03:49 pm (UTC)(Expand)
I didn't get it, not because of any confusion re Linden - I did German to degree level and can see it as soon as you signal that it's a pun. But I don't "get" jokes much outside situations where I am expecting them. If a comedian onstage said it, yes, I'd get it, but in your status I just assumed you were in Berlin and pleased about it - the only thing that puzzled me was that UdL is actually a damn boring street! I think most people assume something is meant seriously unless you indicate otherwise. Maybe we need more fonts!

I often use FB for throwing out squibs that I've no other use for - a kind of mental housekeeping, I suppose.

A joke font would be handy, though an irony font is probably more urgent for the internet in general!

(Deleted comment)
Thank you! I look forward to that day.

I admit defeat.

But do you admit de inches?

Q Where did Napoleon keep his armies?
A Sur la côte de la Manche.

(no subject) - wellinghall, 2013-05-17 08:24 am (UTC)(Expand)
?

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