miscellany/etymology, spirit possession, Uncategorized

“Like Unto the Questing of Thirty Couple Hounds…”


off to Toronto in 1.25 hours! expect grand tales of gastronomic delights both fine and street (mostly street, honestly) upon or within say seven months of my return!

in the meantime, how about a bit of french idiom to tide you over?

boire comme un trou – something we picked up in Paris last winter (the saying, not the habit. Paris was merely where the habit began to grow a little shop-soiled and we considerably more self-hating for wear), which translates literally as “to drink like a hole,” but you can imagine i’m sure means to drink to excess.

which i like, because while pouring something down a hole implies a certain wastage, even a hole gets filled up at a certain point (that point i enjoy describing as my cup having runneth over). so let’s be realistic, right? after all, excess is all about acknowledging, if not abiding by limits (good sense, stomach capacity, health), and so as far as toasts go, “Ce soir, on boit comme un trou,” or more casually “Comme un trou!” is pretty good.

or, dispensing with affectation: “Tonight, we drink like a hole.”


And with that the king saw coming toward him the strangest beast that ever he saw or heard of; so the beast went to the well and drank, and the noise was in the beast’s belly like unto the questing of thirty couple hounds; but all the while the beast drank there was no noise in the beast’s belly; and therewith the beast departed with a great noise, whereof the king had great marvel . . . Right sor there came a knight afoot unto Arthur and said . . . ‘Tell me if you saw a strange beast pass this way.’

‘Such one i saw,’ said King Arthur, ‘that is past two mile; what would ye with the beast?’ said Arthur.

‘Sir, i have followed that beast long time, and killed mine horse, so would God that i had another to follow my quest . . .  for i have followed this quest twelvemonth, and either i shall achieve him, or bleed of the best blood of my body.’

Pellinore, that time king, followed the Questing Beast, and after his death Sir Palomides followd it” Sir Thomas Mallory, ”

– Le Morte D’Arthur, book I chapter 19.

there’s probably something to be learned here.


3 thoughts on ““Like Unto the Questing of Thirty Couple Hounds…”

  1. Renée says:

    Hey, Tranna—my hometown! Where are you staying? Where are you eating? Where are you drinking?

    Now, I know that you already have an itinerary, but I cannot resist:

    Duke of Gloucester, near Yonge and Bloor—a hole-in-the-wall upstairs, next to the Brass Rail strip club—if it’s still there, it’s a great watering hole.

    For the Best Breakfast Ever (imho), do go to the Grapefruit Moon at 988 Bathurst Street.

    I grew up in Tranna but I’m never homesick for it…save for the two places I’ve named above.

    Enjoy the Big Smoke!

  2. stillcrapulent says:

    awesome, thanks for the recommends! so far i’ll i’ve done is drink as many Tankhouse IPAs as i can pour down my craw, but i’m on the case!

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