Tuesday, August 19, 2008

changing, inverted commas, tea service

Posted by PicasaThese climbing French beans will eventually be purple from stem to tip. In their early stages of development, you can see the purple begininng to take over.

People sometimes say "in inverted commas" when they want don't want to identify themselves with a word, which they use reluctantly and for which they can find no alternative. Nowadays, you sometimes see, especially on television, a gesture to convey the same separation of meaning, which consists of two fingers of each hand held up beside the speaker's head. Others make the distinction by tone of voice alone. This is something that Proust understands in the context of the forms of snobbery, which he desrcibes so accurately:
'"Oh, but Cambremer is quite a good name - old too," protested the General.
"I see no objection to it being old," the Princess answered dryly," but whatever else it is it's not euphonious," she went on, isolating the word euphonious as though between inverted commas, a little affectation to which the Guermantes set were addicted'.

The Dragon Eye Oolong tea, which we have had in the house for the last few weeks, ran out this morning. The stall, which supplies it in the Pantiles market, was not there last Saturday, and we were unable to replenish stocks. As Heidi and I, despite a shyness for some of the more exotic teas, both now admit to an addiction for its ginger, peach and apricot flavours, I thought I would ring the supplier to see if they would send some by post. No need for postage! This afternoon a carton of the tea arrives delivered by hand.

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