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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Woodcuts Between the Wars

Here we are in the brief interregnum between RSA and SAA, so to help while away the days, I thought we might all enjoy BtR's Woodcut Caption Contest #7. Remember, all you Spenserian numerologists, 7 is the number of days in the week, and the seventh day of the week is the Jewish Sabbath, and so this woodcut doubtless has some sabbatarian symbolism hidden in it. Or it will allude to the deadly sins. Or something like that, I don't know; when I was in grad school and the Spenserians started doing numerology, I tended to just nod politely and think about where to have dinner later.

Get captioning, people:

  • At 3/28/2007 11:31:00 AM, Blogger Adam Roberts wrote…

    I feel bad about this, but somebody's got to get the ribaldry out of the way before the serious captioning can get going. So I offer:

    "As soon as you've finished pleasuring that turtle, I'm going to try my luck chatting up that dog ..."

     

  • At 3/28/2007 11:41:00 AM, Anonymous hd wrote…

    Red bull gives you wings.

     

  • At 3/28/2007 12:06:00 PM, Anonymous pb wrote…

    Why don't you hold my staff while I take a turn groping for fish in that strange river.

     

  • At 3/28/2007 12:25:00 PM, Blogger Hieronimo wrote…

    pb's comment might have taken the prize if his allusion hadn't been memorially reconstructed!

    "Groping for trouts in a peculiar river" (M for M, 1.2.85).

    Unless you're quoting from a lost bad quarto?

    Or have I missed part of the joke? entirely possible...

     

  • At 3/28/2007 04:01:00 PM, Blogger muse wrote…

    "Give me my fishing pole back or the trout gets it"

    Sorry. I'm still recovering from Miami. Give me a few more hours to get my wits back.

     

  • At 3/28/2007 04:05:00 PM, Blogger muse wrote…

    Take 2 (getting there . . .):

    "Without his rod, Josiah made a rather incomplete angler"

     

  • At 3/28/2007 04:58:00 PM, Blogger Flavia wrote…

    Leontes called. He said stop sluicing his wife and fishing his pond.

     

  • At 3/28/2007 06:06:00 PM, Anonymous tempestsarekind wrote…

    The first logo for the angel-to-human translation site, towerofbabelfish.com, was perhaps a bit too literal...

     

  • At 3/28/2007 06:53:00 PM, Blogger Truewit wrote…

    Oh my God. Mom is totally going to fly the coop when she hears about this.

     

  • At 3/29/2007 08:48:00 AM, Blogger Truewit wrote…

    Let me clarify that one:

    "Oh my God, Dad. Mom is totally going to fly the coop when she hears about this!"

    Of course, that might not really be any help.

     

  • At 3/29/2007 09:02:00 AM, Blogger Adam Roberts wrote…

    "Yeah, I've got wings, I know, I know. But what I'm most proud of is my ability to balance this jam jar on my right foot..."

    Rod Hull was down by the river practising with his ventriloquist's Trout when an angel appeared to him with a rather better idea.

    "Look: Angel or no Angel, I'm taking this fish up Rapunzel's hair with me, whether you like it or not."

     

  • At 3/29/2007 01:59:00 PM, Blogger Simplicius wrote…

    I said you should "go pray with the devout," not "get laid with a trout!"

     

  • At 3/29/2007 04:21:00 PM, Anonymous Pedantius wrote…

    Johannes Cornyn spoiled the Lancashire gay pride parade with his "man on turtle" action.

     

  • At 3/29/2007 07:13:00 PM, Blogger Pasquil wrote…

    Sexual Fantasies of the Madmen of Gotham (CCLXVII)

    Kill-Sin Purefoy thought he'd found a loophole in Leviticus.

    "What may hap in Amsterdam abideth in Amsterdam."

    "The quality of kinky is not strained."

    "What super-freaks these mortals be."

    "Nice cod-piece!"

     

  • At 3/29/2007 11:31:00 PM, Blogger muse wrote…

    Oh, wow, Flavia's caption and Pasquil's last one both floored me!

     

  • At 3/30/2007 01:27:00 AM, Blogger Flavia wrote…

    Being a godly sort, William obediently traded flesh for fish each lent.

     

  • At 3/30/2007 01:58:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous wrote…

    An astonishingly proleptic, if perhaps overliteral, illustration for Stanley Fish, _Surprised by Sin_.

     

  • At 3/30/2007 07:41:00 AM, Blogger Adam Roberts wrote…

    Wow: my vote for best caption so far goes to Flavia's second offering.

     

  • At 3/30/2007 07:44:00 AM, Blogger Adam Roberts wrote…

    As Thoreau once said, some circumstantial evidence is very strong, as when you find somebody's milk in the trout.

     

  • At 3/30/2007 07:56:00 AM, Blogger Pasquil wrote…

    Heinrich Niclaes was far more lascivious before he founded the Family of Love.

    During Lent, Rafe was granted the unique power to pleasure fish while defying gravity.

    "God had a message for you, but never mind ..."

    The dog's prayers were answered at last.

     

  • At 3/30/2007 08:40:00 AM, Blogger Truewit wrote…

    when did our readership get so damn hilarious?

     

  • At 3/30/2007 10:54:00 AM, Anonymous Lucy wrote…

    Is the dog thinking "Don't just stand there, let's get to it / Strike a pose, there's nothing to it"?

     

  • At 3/30/2007 11:16:00 AM, Blogger Hieronimo wrote…

    I like Pasquil's line about the dog's prayers being answered. Cod-piece: funny. Abideth in Amsterdam: funny. The John Cornyn box turtle joke: funny. And Flavia's last one is funny too. So much funny!

    Truewit: not so funny.

     

  • At 3/30/2007 02:20:00 PM, Blogger Hieronimo wrote…

    By the way, you are all very sick people. Just so you know, as you would have known had you been more church-going, this image comes from a ballad about Tobias (Wing P2555A), who is attacked by a giant fish (ok, the woodcut fish is not so gigantic); but an angel tells him not to fear the mighty fish, and instead (naturally) to cut out its liver, heart, and gall, from which miraculous medicines are made.

    But by all means, keep the fish-sex jokes coming!

     

  • At 3/30/2007 06:48:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous wrote…

    Spare the rod and spoil the cod.

     

  • At 3/30/2007 08:35:00 PM, Blogger Flavia wrote…

    For what it's worth, my own faves are Pasquil's Amsterdam caption and Pedantius's Santorum-influenced gay pride one.

    The angel's really getting short shrift here, though--I've been trying & failing to come up with something in an Annunciation vein. Anyone else want to give it a try?

     

  • At 3/30/2007 09:18:00 PM, Blogger Truewit wrote…

    Mine is said by the angel, who is actually a half-man half-chicken being, and when he sees his father, whom he previously thought was a one-species guy, cheating on his chicken mother with a fish, he says:

    "Oh my God, Dad. Mom is really going to fly the coop when she finds out about this!"

    Sigh. My own wife told me she had no idea what the hell my caption meant. I'm going to have to change my name to La Foole. Or Sir Politic Would-be. Or some such.

    Amsterdam has my vote. Made me snort. Do did the dog's prayers one. I'm going to have Pasquil come do some stand-up in my classes.

     

  • At 3/30/2007 09:20:00 PM, Blogger Truewit wrote…

    that's "so" not "do."

     

  • At 3/30/2007 09:35:00 PM, Blogger Hieronimo wrote…

    Flavia, I accept your challenge:

    "The angel Joseph got stuck with the far less prestigious annunciation of the Sturgeon Birth."

     

  • At 3/31/2007 12:30:00 AM, Blogger GuiltyAsCharged wrote…

    What's the first rule of fish club?

     

  • At 3/31/2007 07:39:00 AM, Anonymous Pedantius wrote…

    I agree with truewit: Amsterdam and the dog's prayers brought teh funny. Also William trading fish for flesh.

    FWIW, the dog's prayers would get my vote, since it's funny AND encorporates all the foreground characters.

     

  • At 3/31/2007 08:05:00 AM, Blogger Pasquil wrote…

    As for me, I liked Flavia's trading fish for flesh, Adam R's lead-off pleasuring the turtle ... chat up the dog, and Pedantius's man on turtle. The sturgeon birth is also good.

    Truewit, my wife didn't get several of mine. But, like others, she did like Amsterdam and the dog's prayers best.

    I also got a kick out of Hieronimo's "reveal" (sorry for the reality TV slang) of the true story, which also made me laugh. I would love to know just what the angel actually said. The story seems so Pythonesque.

     

  • At 3/31/2007 08:25:00 AM, Blogger Pasquil wrote…

    Oops. I meant that my wife liked Amsterdam and the dog as MY best, not the best. She liked Flavia's fish for flesh--and Truewit's fly the coop just as much.

    By the way, Flavia's challenge to include the angel more is really kicking my ass. This is all I've got:

    "It's true," the Angel Raphael thought. "Icthyologists really do make better lovers."

    “Fear not yon mighty guppy about thy genitals, Tobias, for the Lord Almighty sayest that thou mayst Smite it, Gut it, and thence use its liver, heart, gall, gills, pylloric caeca, left pelvic fin, and just a smidgeon of gonads, that thou mayst make Miraculous Restoratives and sell thy wares to elderly men at mart.” So spake the Angel Levitral unto Tobias in his need.

     

  • At 3/31/2007 10:25:00 AM, Blogger Flavia wrote…

    Hieronimo, that's exactly where I was trying to get. Although I think Pasquil's icthyologist caption beats it.

    Damn. This particular woodcut caption contest is going to go down in whatever minor branch of history we're all involved in.

     

  • At 3/31/2007 10:51:00 AM, Blogger Hieronimo wrote…

    If you want to read the Book of Tobit (aka Tobias), you can do so at the UVa etext site. The key passage about the fish is from Book 6 and can be found here. It involves casting out demons with fish organs. Now you see why the book is apocryphal.

     

  • At 3/31/2007 05:38:00 PM, Anonymous Pedantius wrote…

    At first skeptical of God's plan for creating Eve, Gabriel came to think it might not be such a bad idea after all.

     

  • At 3/31/2007 08:48:00 PM, Anonymous pb wrote…

    I'm blaming the 'error' in my last submission on the perils of manuscript transmission.

    From The Compleat Ingler, or the Sodometrical Man's Recreation

    Auceps: Wait, you mean Sodomy is a social construct?

    Piscator: Exactly. So, there you are holding another man's staff--ergo, you're a sodomite. And here I am, fucking a trout, and I'm not.

     

  • At 4/01/2007 07:01:00 AM, Blogger Adam Roberts wrote…

    It seems the captioning gloves are off as far as references to "fucking the trout" are concerned. Therefore ...

    A gentle knight was pricking in the cod.

    "What angel wakes me from my fish-fucking bed?"

    Or the cod is saying:

    "Noli me tangere, for coddy I am,
    And make thy nethers stink I shall, though I seem tame."

     

  • At 4/01/2007 10:15:00 AM, Blogger Adam wrote…

    "And I got the wings at TJ Max. I find they lend me a certain flippant gravitas. The kids, of course, love them."

     

  • At 4/01/2007 11:41:00 AM, Blogger Hieronimo wrote…

    Adam (non-Roberts), I don't understand the TJ Maxx joke, but at least there's nothing about fucking trout in it.

     

  • At 4/01/2007 06:09:00 PM, Blogger bdh wrote…

    I love you guys. Seriously.

     

  • At 4/02/2007 07:35:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous wrote…

    My google account isn't recognizing my password, but I am still Pasquil:

    Azriel looked on in pity as he realized that in Tobias's case, sadly, "one-eyed-trouser-trout" was no euphemism.

    "Okay, I realize this looks bad, but I swear that a few seconds ago this was a really hot mermaid!"

    "Wow," the cod thought, "now this is awkward!"

     

  • At 4/02/2007 04:04:00 PM, Blogger Bardiac wrote…

    No, no, that's "fisher of men" not "f*cker of fish"!

    Lame, but it's what I've got. I like Flavia's first one best so far.

     

  • At 4/02/2007 11:41:00 PM, Anonymous Aldo Manuzio wrote…

    What just happened to this blog?

    I'd like to work something in along the lines of "Joel, get off the babysitter," but to no avail.

    I vote for Amsterdam, although I'm pretty impressed by Sturgeon birth.

     

  • At 4/03/2007 12:44:00 AM, Blogger James wrote…

    In an early draft of Genesis, man was expelled from the garden for an altogether different sin.

     

  • At 4/03/2007 11:26:00 AM, Anonymous hd wrote…

    “Is any kind subject to rape like fish?”--John Donne, Progresse of the Soul.

     


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