Saturday, December 27, 2008

Slightly West of West 44th Ave, NYC

Dorothy Parker. Robert Benchley. George S. Kaufman.

According to the ever- omniscient Wikipedia, these bon vivants, along with a few choice others, were the members of an elite, "celebrated group of writers, critics, actors and wits.

Gathering initially as part of a practical joke, members of 'The Vicious Circle' gathered for lunch each day at the Algonquin Hotel from 1919 until roughly 1929."

Ah, the Baroness loves her the clever folk.

Many's a day when I have whiled away the time wishing that I could be a fly on the wall of The Rose Room during that heyday.

Or, perhaps, I could be their waitress - although I'm sure the tip would be appalling.

Writers, ya know.

The truth is, (and one that I am dubious to share, as I'm sure you will flock here in droves once you know of it), I need not fritter away my time on such wishes.

I have my own Vicious Circle - right here - at the von B kitchen table. Well, the "Circle" may be more of an oval, and the topics may not always fall into the "Vicious" category, but make no mistake - the high level of intellect and verbal repartee when the Baron, Duke 1, Duke 2 and I are together would rival any Algonquin lunchtime chin wag.

Some examples of our evocative and compelling topics of conversation:

. A frenzied debate over who was the Head Power Ranger, and, if we were the 4 Power Rangers, which form we should take to best drive down our slush and ice-covered side street

. The petition by Duke 1 of his belief that people who say "Merry Christmas" to everyone (regardless of their potential religious affiliation) are merely intending to infuse the spirit of the season, rather than being evangelical Christians who assume everyone celebrate this particular holiday

. An observation, after seeing "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button", that the deathbed Daisy, played by Cate Blanchett, bears a striking resemblance to Emperor Palpatine of Star Wars fame.

. Yet another dog anecdote, told by the Baron, of how our horny little cur was caught pre-flagrante delicto, "preparing" his dog bed for some afternoon delight, by nudging his nose underneath to flip it in half (think taco here, people, and connect the dots)

"How did you know that he was getting ready to hump his bed?", asked Duke 1, foolishly stepping onto the landmine.

"Well, I usually nudge my nose under your Mom to flip her over".

Hilarity (and a fair share of digust) ensued.

. The bantering back and forth betwixt Dukes 1 and 2 over what is the correct term - GILF or GMILF, again after seeing an aged (yet somehow sexy)(?) Cate Blanchett, who again looks like a Star Wars-esque dried apple head doll. Replete with liver spots.

. The innuendo-laden instructions, read aloud for all to enjoy, that came with Duke 1's new harmonica. Lots of "place tongue over 3 holes", "blow gently", and "That's What She Said" comebacks. Whoooooooo!

. The eternal debate: Is Samuel L. Jackson the greatest over-actor of all time? Results of this round - 3 for, 1 against.

A certain Gertrude Atherton once described the Algonquin Round Table as a group "where the cleverest of them - and those who were so excitedly sure of their cleverness that for the moment they convinced others as well as themselves - forgathered daily. There was a great deal of scintillating talk in this group of the significant books and tendencies of the day...They appraised, debated, rejected, finally placed the seal of their august approval upon a favored few."

The von B Round-ish table - august?


I think not.

We're more of a July.


{i}Post said...

Our table is not as July-ish as yours, as my kids are younger. Perhaps we are more along the lines of March...still young in our debates. ;0) Love you as always!

stacy said...

i agree with duke 1 about what it means to say 'merry christmas' to everyone.

it is - in no way, shape, or form an offensive thing to say.

i am not the least offended when someone wishes me a 'happy hanukkah' - just the opposite in fact. i feel grateful for their blessing.

Gifted Typist said...

The Gonk. I happened to walk by when in NYC a few days ago. When I noticed the sign, I almost kissed the ground.

Anonymous said...

As much as I have so seen these in action,
It's really just as funny to hear about your table banter.
Far more intelligent than the banter of our table, because ours usually talks about mom and her no underwear/faring/bad cooking.

But still
I wish I could be funny like you guys.
BTW, Red power ranger was the leader.

thetravelingb wonders said...

Here is the a question for you table as I have yet to get an answer. "why is prostitution illegal yet filiming porn is not?" Are they both not paid to have sex?

Maybe one of your readers can answer it for me. I love a good debate and I not talking about whether the toilet paper goes over or under.

I know the Dukes and the Dukes would have an opinion on this.

as always.

thetraveling b/aka the countess of yy

Cormac Brown said...

"An observation, after seeing "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button", that the deathbed Daisy, played by Cate Blanchett, bears a striking resemblance to Emperor Palpatine of Star Wars fame."

Oh, great, try and kill my Kate-love, thanks a bunch.

According to what I've seen on blogs, "GILF" is the most common usage.

As I got about two paragraphs into this, I was going to ask what conversation Zeus was going to contribute, but on second thought...

Baroness von B said...

Countess iPost: I think our family will forever be stuck in July - we just can't help the lowbrow humour - it's a genetic defect! Enjoy your family's innocence - you are all so lovely...

Countess Stacy: I'm beginning to come around, although I don't understand why I'm so hung up on the whole "Happy Holidays" PC thing. I guess it's kind of like people who are ex-smokers are the most vehement critics, so maybe are
we Jewish converts...I love your spin on things - it really does shed a lovely light on the actual intent of the blessing rather than the words alone - thank you so much for that! You are a blessing yourself, missy!

Countess of the Keyboard: "The Gonk", you say? The fact you:
a) know it as The Gonk, and
b) were in its vicinity
make me even more awestruck by you!

So jealous.

Countess Schmee: You've really got to start going easier on the Moms. She is getting trampled! And really, how different can one extended family's conversation be from anothers, given the fact we're all from the same whackadoodle gene pool?

Countess YY: These excellent questions are far too lofty for our group, although I will fly them up the freak-pole and see what happens (that's what she said - whoooo!)

Count Cormac: Your Cate-love can stay intact - most of the movie she looks beyond exquisite.

And just so you know, the whole GILF thing arose (that what she said - whooo!)over how smokin' she still looked as a senior - high praise from 2 very picky teenagers...

As for the dog - gah. I'm doing research this afternoon on what a safe level of saltpeter is for canines.

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