And here I am! It’s been a little while but I feel it’s time to rez this little blog and get it clanking away again. Here is a little tidbit from Belinda for your satisfaction:
As part of the glories of summer, the lovely and talented Sarah Marian, the sparkling and coruscant Beth Dunn and my humble self decided to read a book together and Belinda got the pick. It’s been a lazy sort of read with plenty of dawdling but that’s part of the joys of this season. One particular part made me laugh hard over my lunch so I thought I’d share. Here are the principle players:
Clarence (aka Clary) Hervey
Here he is kneeling before lady Delacour, Belinda’s hostess.
sir Philip is off to the left, leaning against a pillar, too dashed to stand
Rochfort is facing sir Philip, nearly completely blocked by that brunette’s head
Mr. Percival is seated at the chess table, contemplating his next move
A quick summary about what happened before erroneously trying to swim from a book-
Clarence and Philip get wasted tasting wines at Philip’s house and then with nothing left to do, they take off for the park, placing bets on who’s the better pedestrian. This is judged by seeing who can walk fastest, staying on the pavement, to a large tree. Philip wins but only because he shoved people out of the way to stay on the pavement. Clarence believes he wins because he stepped off the pavement to let children pass, thereby showing his “real superiority”. Clarence’s friends laugh at him for losing and since he’s doused, Clarence announces the bright idea of swimming in the Serpentine (nasty) thereby beating Philip. Everyone knows Clarence can’t swim and here’s where the fun continues
“You may wink at one another, as wisely as you please,” said Clarence, “but come on my boys- I am your man for a swim- a hundred guineas upon it’-
Darest thou, Rochfort, now,
Leap in with me into this weedy flood.
And swim to yonder point. (note how clever Clarence Hervey is. He poetry slams on will!)
-and instantly Hervey, who had in his confused head some recollection of an essay of Dr. Franklin’s on swimming, by which he fancied that he could ensure at once his safety and his fame, threw off his coat and jumped in the river- luckily he was not in boots. Rochfort began coolly to undress himself under the trees, and all the other young men stood laughing by the river side…
(Let us skip over the part where Sir Percival and Co. come up to meet Clarence due to the fact that he didn’t push aside children. But wait…where is Clarence?)
“Damn it, yes, where is Clary though?” exclaimed sir Philip, suddenly recollecting himself. Clarence Hervey at this instant was drowning, he had got out of his depth, and had struggled in vain to recover himself.
“Curse me, if it’s not all over with Clary,” continued sir Philip. “Do any of you see his head any where? Damn you, Rochfort, yonder it is.”
“Damme, so it is,” said Rochfort, “but he’s so heavy in his clothes, he’d pull me down along with him to Davy’s Locker- damme if I go after him.”
“Damn it, though, can’t some of ye swim? Can’t some of ye jump in?” cried sir Philip, turning to his companion. “Damn it, Clarence will go to the bottom.”
And so he inevitably would have done, had not Mr. Percival at this instant leaped into the river, and seized hold of the drowning Clarence. It was with great difficulty that he dragged him to shore. “
Clarence comes back to life, sans friends but with Sir Percival looking on. I approve of this Maria Edgeworth. Indeed I do.