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DF Lewis
Tuesday, 16 December 2008

'Odalisque' by PF Jeffery (DFL's comments)

Chapter 16 – Rooms


There are some wonderful passages concerning the cutting of a sausage, including:


“Yes,” I said, “I’m sure she is – but has anyone got a knife to cut the sausage?”

“If there was any danger of a slice coming my way,” Fuquibelle said, “I think I could scare up a knife.”

“I reckon the sausage would go into ten,” I said, “we six – and you four.”

“You, Tuerqui, are an angel’s dancing boots.  I’ll get my knife.”



Basically this chapter is a memorably striking continuation of Tuerqui’s life at Madame Scurf’s establishment.  Much of the role-playing and other activities constructively reminded me of a literary version of the Unreality/Reality TV show ‘Big Brother’ -- plus the concept of ‘rooms’ as in ‘Big Brother’s’ Diary Room, Task Room etc. etc. and ‘Odalisque’s’ own  Groping Parlour, Robing Room etc, e.g:

As evening fell, back in the robing room, I realised that the girls were vying with one another to see who could paint her face most provocatively, and who could disarrange her garments in the most sluttish manner.  Joining the game enthusiastically – my effort was more successful than I’d expected.  The face that looked back at me from the mirror was a genuine mistresspiece of whoredom.  We chatted merrily on the way down to the groping parlour.



He seemed to be living the part.  To my surprise, I was living mine – rather than acting





repellant = repellent


Does the word ‘personable’ below convey any sense of ‘personage’?

My client was a clean and – in fairness – quite a personable man,




Word docs of the actual chapters are freely available to readers of this blog.


 On this site, if you want to leave comments all you need do is type 'nospam' in confirm box and your name.


The links to all Chapter comments by me are here:

Posted by: newdfl on 8/3/2008 6:56:01 AM , 1 comments

Submitted by Pet at 8/3/2008 9:27:36 AM

Thank you for that!

And thank you for viewing "repellant" as a typo. The sad truth, I think, is that it was a spelling mistake. It's corrected now, either way.

An interesting question about "personable" -- and one that I hadn't previously considered. What does the word mean to Tuerqui? In Tuerqui's world, "person" means "non-slave" giving rise to these pairings:


It is entirely possible that a third (similar) pair is:personable/slavishIt may be an adjective meaning "proper to a person (as opposed to a slave)". If so, the sense of this word, in context, may be:

My client was clean and – in fairness – a man quite free of slavishness,

Perhaps we might construe "personable" as meaning almost (but not quite) "of noble bearing". (A bearing appropriate for a person, although perhaps not quite appropriate for one of noble birth.)

On the other hand, "personable" could mean the same to Tuerqui as it does to us. In which case, the sense of this word, in context, is liklely to be:

My client was a clean man and – in fairness – of quite attractive appearance,

I think that this is probably the only occasion on which Tuerqui uses the word, so we can only guess.


Posted by weirdtongue at 10:22 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, 16 December 2008 10:23 AM EST
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