it is what it is, Monty Python division

Arnold M. Zwicky zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU
Sat Feb 25 16:55:19 UTC 2006

On Feb 25, 2006, at 8:07 AM, RonButters at AOL.COM wrote, about the MP
Anne Elk sketch:

> Is this a parody of literary theory, or just academics in general?

i've always thought that it was neither, that Anne Elk was just a
loony.  in fact, she is so described in the stage direction that ends
this sketch (and the show).  she is given no academic (or any other)

she has a second theory, that fire brigade choirs seldom sing songs
about Marcel Proust.  by this point, a fire brigade has in fact come
on stage, and when Anne Elk finally states her theory, "With only a
half-beat pause the fire brigade start singing the Proust song."

(the fire brigade figured earlier in the show.  in fact, this show,
31, is "The All-England Summarize Proust Competition".  one of the
finalists in the competition is the Bolton Choral Society, who try
summarizing Proust in a madrigal.  this is the Proust song alluded to
above.  the competitors are all ordinary people, and the judges are
all famous cricketers, plus Yehudi Menuhin.  i think it's fair to say
that this is a parody of tv game shows -- MP did a number of these --
and not of academia, though MP did some of those too.)


The American Dialect Society -

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