Monday, March 8, 2010

Le petit parisien

Yup! That's me! Actually, no - that's the title for our newspaper: "Le petit parisien." If it were me, it would be "La petite parisienne." Must make sure everything agrees now. Today was a great day, if only because it was a Monday! I sure do love that l'ENS class. Today, we were talking about the history of poetry. Of course, mostly about French poetry, but also in relation to the rest of Europe and the rest of the world. The class started when Mlle Macé told M. Murat that he could only talk for an hour, because she needed a half an hour for her section and then the Italian poet who is going to lecture for part of the next three classes was going to introduce himself. So, M. Murat started talking about poetry and how, early on, poetry and prose weren't separate and eventually, they evolved in different ways. He talked about a lot of other things and specifics, but I want to get back to Cyrano, so I won't write them all here. After an hour of him talking, he noticed that it was time to stop, apologized, and kept going. She was amused, until he had gone 15 minutes over the time she had allotted him, but didn't want to seem mean, so let him keep going. Eventually, after an extra half hour, he stopped and she finally got to talk, starting with the statement that she was going to have to fly through her section so the poet (Guido - like the character from "Nine") could introduce himself. She talked for half an hour, then said she should probably stop even though she was in the middle of telling us three main points and had only mentioned the first. The poet told her she could keep going. So, finally, with two minutes left of class, Guido finally got to introduce himself, but it was really Mlle Macé who introduced him. He barely got two words out. People at l'ENS are kind of long winded.

After the class I had to rush to get to my medical visit, since l'ENS is so far away from all the métro stops. I got there just in time, and the first thing they did was tell me to wait. I got there at 13:30 (European for 1:30pm) and I was there until 3:30. Two hours for them to weigh me, check my height, my eyesight, my lungs and my blood pressure. How about this: if I feel like I'm having trouble breathing or seeing then I'll go to them without them calling me. Anyway, the visit was a waste of time, but at least I'm legally here! Then, I had the newspaper meeting where we chose "Le petit parisien" for the name. And then, I taught English.

Okay, Act IV of Cyrano (I'll do Act V tomorrow): Cyrano and Christian are in the middle of the war. Cyrano is writing more than one letter a day to Roxane (from Christian, of course). De Guise arrives and tells them that they're going to be attacked - he doesn't like Cyrano. Then, Roxane shows up to see Christian. She tells him that his letters are so beautiful, that she would love him even if he were ugly - maybe even more so if he were ugly. At this, Christian realizes that it's really Cyrano that Roxane loves (duh!) and tells Cyrano that he has to tell Roxane that he wrote the letters. Christian says that he can't bear thinking he has a rival and wants Roxane to love only him, though he knows she loves only Cyrano. Then, right before Cyrano was about to reveal that he really wrote the letters, it is announced that Christian was dying. Of course, Cyrano couldn't tell Roxane under those circumstances, so he tells Christian in his last moments that he told Roxane everything and that it was Christian that she loved and Christian died. As they say in Wicked, it's "beautifully tragic."

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