FIND in
<--prev V15 next-->

From: "Robert Borski" <rborski@coredcs.com>
Subject: (urth) Dial A Throne
Date: Mon, 6 Jul 1998 21:35:02 

William Ansley, with NaCl on his tongue, has recently written:

"(By the way, could you please favor us with
all the dirt on how you "almost certainly" work out that "the name of
'not-so-young man' in the 'bathroom' [is] 'John Clute.'"?)
But if that's the case, then why is the bowling ball described as being on
the throne. (If a chair of massy gold isn't a throne, I'd like to know what

The *bowl*ing ball is a misapprehended toilet *bowl*--note, each also has
the requisite three holes.

The "arms of the chair" slapped by the "bowling ball" is the toilet seat
rim (usually horseshoe
shaped) being dropped. And of course the throne is a "throne"--a very
common euphemism for toilet here in the US (although usually it's referred
to as a porcelain throne).

"John" also means "bathroom" as in "I have to go to the john." Clute
follows the same linguisitc morphing patterns as clue-cue-coot-cutie-cootie
et al. Hence "John" "Clute."

Just as a curious sidenote, it was in the writings of John Clute that I
first discovered Number Five's name could be worked out to be Gene Wolfe.
Perhaps having been queried about this by John (all entirely speculative, I
grant you), Gene Wolfe decided to show him how "easily" it could be done
with JC's name. Dunno.

As for what "dialing" is or isn't, you're free to accept whatever. But the
simple truth of the matter is that this IS what tuning in a TV channel was
called during the heyday of my childhood, 50 years ago. We also may not
have had Channels above 11 in the beginning; hence the reference to no
TV/maze at 12; but I'm not absolutely sure. (There were no telecasts that
ran beyond midnight at any rate.) One of my contemporaries found an old
black-and-white tv in his basement that was purchased in 1964 and it only
went to 13. Earlier versions--circa 1950--may have only gone to 10 or 11. I
have no immediate sources to check, but if I find out anything (I used to
know a physics professor who collected antique tvs, but he died several
years ago), I'll be happy to share. Maybe someone else could help?

So now too St. Paul is the patron saint of salt, William?

Robert Borski 


*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

<--prev V15 next-->