A Romantic Thought

I attended a small high school in a small town when I was boy. It was a good school, because it had a core of dedicated and intelligent teachers who were so… so grown up! When it came to the quality of education I was afforded, I have never felt I had any but the best. Where my small school did fall short was the breadth of the curriculum. Among other things, we were not introduced to Latin, which, when I was young, was still considered an important part of a classic education at many schools. Really! In fact, we had no language studies at all. I regret that; I think I would have been good at it. What does this have to do with anything? Well, to most of us a “manger” is a place for animals to eat, as well as the centerpiece for Nativity scenes. It is also the verb “to eat” in the Romantic language French. I’m sure this has something to do with Latin roots, but I wouldn’t know. I didn’t take Latin.

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16 responses to “A Romantic Thought”

  1. Is Ludwig trying to keep the birds from eating, or is he waiting for potential prey/toys to show up?

    I guess, since you wrote it, you’d know.

  2. I was wearing one of my “A&J” t-shirts in Dunkirk, NY, this past weekend, where you appear in the Dunkirk Observer, and got a lot of questions about where I got the shirt – it might be time for you and a few of the syndicate’s other artists to do more site promotion, maybe get the syndicate to beat the bushes a little for you. In any event, I talked up the website, and you certainly have strong appeal in that part of upstate NY.

  3. Slightly less off topic, a “manger” is also the small area at the bow of a boat, closed off by a board to keep water coming through the hawseholes from flooding the deck.

  4. This refers to a well known saying, “A dog in the manger” from a story, probably one of Aesop’s fables. The dog was so selfish that he lay in the manger, which cows and horses eat hay from. The dog didn’t want hay himself — dogs don’t eat hay — but the cows couldn’t eat the hay while he was in the manger. By extension it can be applied to people.

    Jimmy, now that you are grown up, you can read about these things for yourself, rather than moan that you weren’t taught them in school. You seem like a well-read person.

  5. Struggled through 3+ yrs. of it; was not my forte. Knew that -e had no accent ague, and was pronounced like English fort. A BSU math colleague continually got that wrong. If you want to say “for-tay”, go to Italian musical notation. Did know manger = to eat. “Mange merde” is in the imperative, and is hostile.


  6. I have regretted not taking Latin in high school. I avoided it because everyone was scared of the only Latin teacher at school. She was an old maid, very strict, and a legend. In retrospect, she was probably just passionate about teaching and educating young minds. I did take French though but don’t remember much…never had the chance to use it. Spanish would have been the better choice, but French sounded so romantic!

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