Skip to main content

In Which I Am Angrier With Victor Hugo Than I Originally Intended to Be

It's Friday. The week of 4th of July is over, and with it any chance of my workplace being closed until Labor Day. Alas and alack.

So! Let's close this week with an awesome quote by a man I have ambivalent feelings about: Victor Hugo. Because of my major, and a reading plan I formulated in high school, the works of his I've had to read are Les Miserables, L'Homme qui rit, and paaaaart of Notre Dame de Paris (i.e. Hunchback of Notre Dame). I put aside the latter because I occasionally hate Hugo, but I intend on finishing"someday." Yeah. Then.

Before I redeem him slightly by posting this lovely sentence, let me talk a bit about him and why he sucks.

Bypassing, for the moment, his 'Bird's Eye View of Paris' chapter in Notre Dame, which was SERIOUSLY the most unnecessary bit of reading I've ever had to do, except maybe for translational theory, in the book L'Homme qui frickin' rit, he's like "Oh! a chapter on the British House of Lords. How about I tell you the history of it and the architectural style of the building and where everyone sits and what everything's made out of. That'll help, right?"

I just want to hit that man. Just whap him in the face.

As for 'Paris a vol d'oiseau,' it inspired such rage in me that I hesitate to think back to that afternoon spent on my parents' front porch couch reading it. The whole thing talks about the skyline of Paris. Being a half-French-lit-major, I had to read it in French. So here we had a 150 year old book talking about French architecture using outdated 19th French architectural terms, i.e. a chapter that would've been deathly boring in English caused me to have homicidal thoughts when in French. 'I hate it,' is a pathetic way to put it when considering the vastness of my hate.

But. When not going off on his misguided attempts at painting a picture with words, he occasionally throws in a nice sentence. In L'Homme qui rit, the main character, Gwynplaine, is deformed (like a lot of his main characters). And at one point, speaking of him, Hugo makes the statement:

 L'âme est pleine d'étoiles tombantes.

In English, "The soul is full of falling stars." It's my favorite sentence in French, and for that, as well as a few other choice phrases, I forgive Victor Hugo for being an ass.


Popular posts from this blog

Harry Potter 2013 Readalong Signup Post of Amazingness and Jollity

Okay, people. Here it is. Where you sign up to read the entire Harry Potter series (or to reminisce fondly), starting January 2013, assuming we all survive the Mayan apocalypse. I don't think I'm even going to get to Tina and Bette's reunion on The L Word until after Christmas, so here's hopin'. You guys know how this works. Sign up if you want to. If you're new to the blog, know that we are mostly not going to take this seriously. And when we do take it seriously, it's going to be all Monty Python quotes when we disagree on something like the other person's opinion on Draco Malfoy. So be prepared for your parents being likened to hamsters. If you want to write lengthy, heartfelt essays, that is SWELL. But this is maybe not the readalong for you. It's gonna be more posts with this sort of thing: We're starting Sorceror's/Philosopher's Stone January 4th. Posts will be on Fridays. The first post will be some sort of hilar

Minithon: The Mini Readathon, January 11th, 2020

The minithon is upon us once more! Minithons are for the lazy. Minithons are for the uncommitted. Minithons are for us. The minithon lasts 6 hours (10 AM to 4 PM CST), therefore making it a mini readathon, as opposed to the lovely Dewey's 24 Hour Readathon and 24in48, both of which you should participate in, but both of which are a longer commitment than this, the Busy Watching Netflix person's readathon. By 'read for six hours' what's really meant in the minithon is "read a little bit and eat a lot of snacks and post pictures of your books and your snacks, but mostly your snacks." We like to keep it a mini theme here, which mainly means justifying your books and your snacks to fit that theme. Does your book have children in it? Mini people! Does it have a dog! Mini wolf! Does it have pencils? Mini versions of graphite mines! or however you get graphite, I don't really know. I just picture toiling miners. The point is, justify it or don't

How to Build a Girl Introductory Post, which is full of wonderful things you probably want to read

Acclaimed (in England mostly) lady Caitlin Moran has a novel coming out. A NOVEL. Where before she has primarily stuck to essays. Curious as we obviously were about this, I and a group of bloggers are having a READALONG of said novel, probably rife with spoilers (maybe they don't really matter for this book, though, so you should totally still read my posts). This is all hosted/cared for/lovingly nursed to health by Emily at As the Crowe Flies (and Reads) because she has a lovely fancy job at an actual bookshop ( Odyssey Books , where you can in fact pre-order this book and then feel delightful about yourself for helping an independent store). Emily and I have negotiated the wonders of Sri Lankan cuisine and wandered the Javits Center together. Would that I could drink with her more often than I have. I feel like we could get to this point, Emily INTRODUCTION-wise (I might've tipped back a little something this evening, thus the constant asides), I am Alice. I enjoy