post from DownWithTyranny!
on 15 June 2011 12:00:33 AM. © DownWithTyranny!
RAPIER WEATHERWAX: I've been running with a pretty serious crowd up at New Haven -- lots of bull sessions about swing and stuff -- and I've been wondering. Where does our money come from?by KenLast night in Part 1
MILO WEATHERWAX [evasively]: Why -- er -- uh -- the doctor brings it. In a little black bag.
RAPIER: Aw, gee, Dad, I'm old enough to know. Please.
MILO: There, there. Now run along and play with your ponies.
RAPIER: Wouldn't you rather tell me than have me learn it in the gutter?
-- from tonight's installment
of "How Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth"
of "How Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth" (which first appeared in The New Yorker
of Jan. 5, 1946), we left off at a moment of high drama in "the library of the luxurious Park Avenue triplex of Mr. and Mrs. Milo Leotard Allardyce DuPlessis Weatherwax," with a shattering exchange of smashed busts by the Mr. and Mrs., Milo and Octavia. Tonight we proceed with this cautionary tale of "the instinct to conceal one's true livelihood from the kiddies, for fear of their possible scorn" (as illustrated by the awful secret that Joan Crawford as Mildred Pierce kept from her daughter, or the humiliating secret of Barbara Hutton Mdivani Reventlow Grant), which Perelman understood is "as normal as snoring."
Perelman was especially moved by the plight of Ms. Hutton Mdivani Reventlow Grant, the Woolworth heiress familiarly known as "The Poor Little Rich Girl" for her frequently troubled life, who had reportedly been stung to learn that her ex-husband Kurt "had gone out of his way to tell Lance his mother's money came from the ten-cent store."
The item poses all sorts of interesting questions. What constitutes going out of your way to tell a lad his mother's money came from forty or fifty thousand ten-cent stores? How did Lance take the news? Did he, in the first shock of revelation, force his father to his knees and demand retraction of the slur? Did he fling himself with a choked cry into the Countess' lap, all tears and disillusion, or did he heap coals on her head? Mr. Ventura does not say. . . . I hope that the dimly analogous situation which follows, served up for convenience in a dramatic fricassee, may shed some light on the matter and bring chaos out of confusion.
Prepare to meet yet another about-to-be victim of a mortifying family disclosure, the Weatherwaxes' son Rapier, "a blueblood to his fingertips" ("albeit somewhat spoiled").FOR THE CONCLUSION OF THE "DRAMATIC FRICASSEE" OF "HOW SHARPER THAN A SERPENT'S TOOTH," CLICK HERETOMORROW IN PERELMAN TONIGHT: Part 1 of Westward Ha!THURBER TONIGHT (including BENCHLEY, WILL CUPPY, WOLCOTT GIBBS, RING LARDNER, BOB AND RAY, E. B. WHITE, JEAN SHEPHERD, and PERELMAN TONIGHT): Check out the series to date
Read The Full Article: http://downwithtyranny.blogspot.com/2010/06/perelman-tonight-part-2-of-how-sharpe
r.html Add to del.icio.us Digg this Post to Furl Add to reddit Add to myYahoo!