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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Lesser-Known Christmas Tales, Part Two

[My thanks to Laoch of Chicago for, "Did you ever notice that just by changing the order of the letters that Santa becomes Satan?" Also thanks to Willie in Sonoma for a hilarious phone discussion on Faust this evening.]


It began when Dr. Faustus, student of all knowledge, went to the department store to see Santa. The mezzanine sign was composed of distracting colors and idle hands. He got confused and veered right,  became separated from his mother and headed down the wrong stairs of Marlowe's Emporium!  He hopped up on Satan's knee and told him what he wanted for Christmas.

"I want 'us' off my name. Faustus Faustus --the other doctors tease me-- 'Faustus with the leastest', big laughs, big stupid laughs! It makes me tired."

"Ok," said jolly Satan. "Anything else?"

"Yeah, I don't wanna be no old doctor no more. Just Faust. No stinkin' responsibilities. No stinkin' old. Just Faust, young Faust!"

"Would you mind being a tenor?"

"No, fine with me!"

"Ah, then let's skip up 200 years. You want Gounod."

"Yeah, yeah, lots of gonads!"

"Sort of, it's an opera. Behold: the lovely Marguerite; Siebel who wins all hearts with his 'Flower Song' and whose life you make intolerable; Valentine, who outsings you to the bitter end; the family you hector into desolation!"

"Sounds great to me!"

"Only if they don't do the ballet in act 4. That's where you and I get disgraced."

"What else you got?"

"Well, we could skip sideways and try Goethe."

"How d'you spell that?"

"G-o-e-t-h-e"

"That's 'ghost' while holding your tongue-tip out. Other doctors tricked me into saying 'my father works in a shipyard' doing that. No goeth for me!"

"That's Goethe, pronounced 'Gay-tee'. You get to hook up with Helen Of Troy --a great beauty of the Mycenaean Age."

"When was that?"

"Oh, four or five thousand years ago."

"Mommy! Mommy!" Cried Doctor Faustus. "Santa wants to give me to some really old lady!" He leaped up and ran off in search of his mother. Satan picked up the intercom handset.

"Hello Santa? Satan. I think you got a problem-kid on the way. I'll have my helpers lend your helpers some pitchforks and, if that doesn't work, just mention Helen Of Troy.



24 comments:

  1. Love their close working relationship.

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    1. I believe they were alphabetically consecutive on roll call all through their school days and developed mutual familiarity then.

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  2. Not only do you have a very strange mind, but a very highly educated and well-read one. An entertaining combination, to be sure.

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    1. Thanks! It is a strange mind but I'm beginning to get used to it.

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  3. Funny! And thanks again, Geo, for leaving a comment on my blog!

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  4. I can never seem to come up with a comment good enough to compete with your wonderful wit. But you did inspire me to go to YouTube and watch the impressive finale to Gounod's "Faust". (Mirella Freini as Marguerite).

    By the way, Satan knows I've been a good boy.

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    1. Sometimes the excellent dance scene is left out if a production is short of ballerinas and danseurs, but it always ends with Faust and Satan looking like chumps. It's enough that Santa knows we're good boys.

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  5. Replies
    1. Thanks Laoch! And thanks again for the Santa-Satan connection.

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  6. Thanks, Geo., for continuing with this trope! Why not now take Noel and its reverse, Leon, as in Trotsky?

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    1. "Тро́цкий", a great title for a moral tale. He did not deserve what happened to him in Mexico. Neither Faust nor Satan were as mean as Stalin. Perhaps a musical, eh? Mariachi balalaika ballet?

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  7. Good fun. I liked the bit about asking how to spell Goethe.

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    1. Thanks Squid. Language is a kick indeed.

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  8. Just goes to show ya, spelling DOES count.

    Loved it, as always. You're quite the wit, dude. (See, now if I misspelled "dude", and left the "e" off, it'd be a whole 'nother connotation.)

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    1. Indeed, as dud I admit to greater uncertainty than I do as dude. Dudes are confident!

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  9. Oh my dog...errr, I meant oh my god, that was funny.

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    1. Mirror-image words with many parallels!

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  10. Dear Geo,
    I loved the story! I just saw a hilarious German film, with a title that maybe your young kid above might also hsave used - IF you Americans weren't so decent. "göthe" was mispelled in the film's title. Do you want an apple from Paris,(no need to change a letter here to create confusion, ask dear Agatha C.) Waiting for part three!

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    1. Oh! "Pommes d'or du jardin des Hespérides" from The Labors of Hercule (Poirot). Close? I love Agatha.

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  11. Haha very clever Geo. If there was a movie called Satan Santa I would watch it, I imagine it would be quite entertaining :P

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    1. Thanks Lizzy. I can't imagine what such a movie would be about but I'd sure watch it too!

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  12. I had a classmate in high school whose first name was Faust. He preferred to go by his middle name, David, for some strange reason.

    I never realized the Santa-Satan thing before. Sneaky...This story is so funny...I can easily see it being made into something bigger. Santa/Satan takes care of ALL the kids, good AND bad, LOL!

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    1. Well, Helen of Troy was stolen from her husband by Paris, who was also called Alexander(previous post), and that started the Trojan War --so Faust was right to go running to his mommy and your classmate was wise to call himself David, another story in another mythic structure, rather than get mixed up with them apples. And now I'm thoroughly confused! I think they should All have department store workshops.

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