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Happy Saint Hugh's Day!

April 1, 2009

Today we celebrate the Feast of St. Hugh. Hugh was appointed the Bishop of Grenoble by the council at Avignon in 1080, which was impressive as he was not yet ordained as a priest. Apparently, his piety was so great that everyone just knew he was destined for great things.

What kinds of great things? Well, he had a dream in which he saw seven stars. This, of course, inspired him to form his own monastic society, which is naturally named the Carthusian Order. He founded the Carthusians (along with St. Bruno of Cologne, who perhaps taught him many things about how to be a bishop without being a priest) in a snowy, alpine village called Chartreuse. The Carthusians are famous for their lurid yellow-green robes and their ability to craft very fine fishing lures.

Hugh (also know as Hugh of Châteauneuf, which means "Nine Castle" en français) was the Bishop of Grenoble until his death in 1132, though he tried to quit and enter a monastary at Cluny two years after taking the seat of bishop. After his death, Hugh wasn't done. No, his body was burned by the Huguenots during the Wars of Religion. However, at this point, Hugh had already been canonized. Clearly, they didn't like sharing a name with poor Hugh.

Also, today is April Fool's or All Fool's Day. Since it's also Hugh's day, and he was French, I'll add that it's poisson d'avril en France. What is poisson d'avril?, you might ask. I'll tell you. Poisson d'avril means "fish of April" or "April's Fish" (get your mind out of the gutter now), and it is the day set aside for hanging small paper fish on the back of your friends. Oh, those plucky French, what won't they think of next?

As you may have been able to tell, I do have the ability to quickly and easily translate all of these French terms into English (or a reasonable facsimilie of English). That is because I studied French for four years in high school (I mentioned that a while ago, but it's always good to remind folks who might be new or whatever...plus it allows me to add the extra level of yet another parenthetical clause). And, what would high school be like if you could not torture some poor, unsuspecting fool on poisson d'avril? It would be even more painful than usual, let me tell you. Of course, the unsuspecting fool in this case was our French teacher, Ms. Knipp.

Madamoiselle Knipp was, perhaps, the one person in all of history I've met with a heart of solid, 18K gold, mostly because she put up with this stupid shit and didn't beat the hell out of us with her enormous yardstick, knicknamed Spanks. Anyway, the first time we learned of poisson d'avril, a couple of my friends (since I lived in a tiny village in the eastern part of the county and I didn't have a car nor parents who were willing to drive my ass around for such stupid endeavors) sat around most of the night of March 31st drawing thousands of tiny fish on little post-it notes. They arrived at school early, a few minutes after the janitors went around unlocking all the classroom doors, and snuck into Ms. Knipp's room, covering the walls with all of these little fish. A good time was had by all, and we were finding tiny paper fish for months after the prank, which would have been legendary by French standards.

The following year (when I was a junior), right before the third period, someone in the office paged Ms. Knipp to come to the office. Confused, she obliged, and as she went around the corner, my friends came running in with an electric skillet, oil, and, yes, fish. They fried up fish for everyone in the class, and when Ms. Knipp returned from her fool's errand, everyone yelled in unison "poisson d'avril!" Incidentally, I think that's when I got a fish bone caught in my throat and I ended up puking (I did make it to the restroom). It took me several years before I could eat fish again.

So, let us celebrate Hugh of Châteauneuf, his yellow-robed friends, and French fish everywhere today. Also, since it's St. Hugh day, let's celebrate guys named Hugh. [1]


Also, today is FitzChivalry Farseer's Beloved day. Yes, that's an obscure reference. No, I don't expect most of you to understand it (if you do, post it in the comments, you vile lurker). To celebrate, you should go out and bang a chick named Molly, and then whine about it incessantly.

[1] Two of the three of these men, my wife finds very, very sexy. The third is simply cute and on the list because he has a British accent. I hope everyone appreciates how hard I had to work on this picture.

23 comments:

Sass said...

If only his service to the king hadn't gotten in the way, he wouldn't have to whine about Molly.

Personally, I find one of those men to be quite sexy. In fact, I'd like to just grab him and...

never mind.

Alaina said...

Appreciated here.

Candy's daily Dandy said...

Thank you for the de-licious pic of Mr. Jackman....

Now what was it you were saying?

Fancy Schmancy said...

I never know if you're pulling my leg on any of your posts, today is no exception.

Soda and Candy said...

Mmm Hugh Jackman... Mmm French....

This is my favorite post by you.

Anna Russell said...

Your post was both witty and informative, but screw that because there's a picture of Wolverine at the bottom and now I've gone to my happy place.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ Sass: *speechless*

@ Alaina: You're no longer Incomprehensible? *gasp* I missed the memo!

@ Candy: After the epic fail of trying to provide you ladies with some cowboy sexiness, I decided that various Hughs would work. It seems I was right.

@ Soda & Candy: Yes, well, see, I'm not all nekkid chicks and chemistry. I'm a giver, too.

@ Fancy: heh.

@ Anna: You'll notice, that's not just Wolverine; that's shirtless Wolverine. Snikt.

Chaka said...

If you are showcasing eye candy for the ladies you left off Hugh Downs from 20/20. Ok, Maybe he's a little past his prime. You gotta hand it to Hugh Jackman. He can be a viscious action hero one day and dancing in musicals the next.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ Chaka: Exactly why I have a mancrush on him. No one can rock adamantium claws and gold lamé pants quite so well as he.

Frank said...

I took 4 years of German in high school, but all I did was sit in the back with my friends and look up lewd words. Even today I can compliment a girl on her chest, but still can't ask where the train station is.

red said...

I am very sad our trash talking was thwarted. However, in good fun, SDSU totally would have killed your namby-pamby Irishmen.

coolred38 said...

Fish? Just think if all that energy spent making little paper fish had been used instead for the good of mankind...one of you might have discovered how to get chocolate milk directly from the source by now....hmmm?

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ Frank: The only German I know is "Ich habbe grosse lust fur dich!" Oh, and some douchebag name Bernd.

@ red: Oh, you Aztecs may be mighty warriors and rulers of great empires, but my Irishmen could drink you under the table.

@ Coolred38: You vastly overestimate the powers of our 15-year-old minds. Although, one of that group is a professor at Princeton now. *shrug*

Girl Interrupted said...

By God, I love history!

And by God, I love Robin Hobbs books too!

But by GOD, I love a shirtless Hugh Jackman more than either of those!

That was pretty damned close to a perfect post IMO!

Leon Basin said...

I really like your blog! Thank you for sharing!:)

words...words...words... said...

I never knew how many Hughs I liked. Although not in the same way as much of your readership. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ Girl Interrupted: I'm here to serve. And, damn, it's so nice to see so many people heaping much love upon FitzyFitz and the Fool today. It makes me smile. Big time.

@ Leon: Thank you for stopping by. We have a lot in common; I'd like to write 12 books, too. Good luck!

@ Words^3: Don't forget Hugh Hefner. And (as Chemgeek pointed out...once) Hugh Jazz!

Sassy Britches said...

I heart all your Hughs, and in that order.

Thank you for only naked men today. I know what a huge (HA!!) sacrifice that was for you.

Will Shannon said...

Fuck HUGH!

(For all the Curb Your Enthusiasm fans in the crowd).

Nej said...

Not only do I learn something new every time I read your blog...I also get a new song firmly implanted for the rest of the day. Unfortunately, I'm backlogged on my blog reading....many posts to read, many songs finding themselves lodged in my head. :-)

First I read your blog and get the cowboy song stuck....now ("He had a dream in which he saw seven stars.")I have a little Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat running through my musical flypaper of a brain.

I agree with your wife, all three of them are on my list. Although Hugh Jackman's performance on the Oscars this year almost knocked him out of the running.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ SassyBritches: I'm a giver like that. I've got to keep all you fine, lovely ladies coming back for more, somehow, right?

@ Will: Very nice, sir, very nice.

@ Nej: See, this is why I don't watch shit like the Oscars. I don't want to see Wolverine doing anything other than going all sniktety-snikt and smoke a big bowl.

pistols at dawn said...

I feel like that only Hughs I know are fake names like Hugh G. Ass. Ha ha ha!

Oh, I'm an idiot.

Leopardess said...

Indeed, he whined on and on about Molly (and on and on and on)... Great series (all of them), but a bit heavy on the whining at times.