YBQ in WSJ / "bottle in front of me" (UNCLASSIFIED)

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Tue Oct 7 20:36:29 UTC 2008

The version attributed to Tom Waits (1977), "Champagne for my real
friends, real pain for my sham friends," was familiar to me as a
toast a decade earlier.  I have no idea whence it came, but I
wouldn't be surprised to learn it had another couple of decades on it.


At 2:55 PM -0400 10/7/08, Mark Mandel wrote:
>That's much like this bit from "The Charladies' Ball":
>At the Charladies' Ball people said one and all,
>"You're the belle of the ball, Mrs. Mulligan."
>We had one-steps and two-steps and the divil knows what new steps.
>We swore that we never would be dull again, by dad.
>We had wine, porter and Jameson.
>We had cocktails and cocoa and all.
>We had champagne that night but we'd real pains next morning,  <====
>The night that we danced at the Charladies' Ball.
>Comment at http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=6502#37804 says:
>Dominic Behan recorded the following part of the song on an EP record
>in about 1962.
>This is sung by Frank Harte on his album "Daybreak and a Candle End",
>and the lyrics are in his book "Songs of Dublin"(1978 Gilbert Dalton,
>pub). He says "A song made famous by Jimmy O'Dea and written by Harry
>O'Donovan. The song was written for performing on the stage but it has
>so much that is Dublin in it that it has been accepted by the
>Wikipedia has a slightly different version at
>On Tue, Oct 7, 2008 at 12:55 PM, Mullins, Bill AMRDEC
><Bill.Mullins at us.army.mil> wrote:
>>  A slight antedating of the Tom Waits version.   Apparently Waits
>>used the quote on "Fernwood 2 Night" on 8/1/1977:
>>  http://www.tomwaitslibrary.com/interviews/77-aug1-fernwood2night.html
>  > Note that he also said "Champagne for my real friends, real pain
>for my sham friends," a line with a similar structure. (although no
>statement that he originated the line.)
>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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