Soupe Aux Choux, La

Year:
1981
592 Views


Cabbage Soup

The village was a village of the Bourbonnais.

As this discrete Bourbonnais hadn't carved for itself a war name in history,|like Alsace or Lorraine,

it was mistaken, for instance, for Burgundy

just as, long ago, Piraeus (Greek port) was mistaken for a man,

and my aunt's pendants for my uncle's.

In short, the village was the worse for it.

To put it bluntly, back on white,

there was nothing left in the village, less than nothing.

Or, rather, yes...

There still survived, by hook or by crook,

in the hamlet of Les Gourdiflots,

two exotics, two fossils from the dawn of time,

two pathetic creatures.

The first of these Last of the Mohicans,

of these tanned, wine-soaked dried fruits,

of these curiosities from another time,

rejected by technology and even the combustion engine,

the first, then, of these two Druids of the wine goblet

was called Francis Chrasse,

nicknamed Le Bomb (the bulgy one)

for the hunch that endowed his features.

The second one was Claude Ratinier --

Le Glaude, as he was called in the neighborhood.|

Le Glaude with a G.

No, I dont want any, I dont want any...

It's only a fly...

If you're afraid it'll plug up your ass...

I don't care about the fly...

even flies would do me less harm than wine, with what I've got!

What have you got since yesterday?

Well? What?

I have diabetes

How did you find out?

In the paper

They talk about your diabetes in "The Mountain"?

No, my lad, they talk about it in general in an article

but there's some particular in that general...

So what?

What d'you mean, so what!!

My Aunt Augustine, who had diabetes in every corner,

they took out one of her eyes...

...she died.

My first cousin, Benot Clou, he was tiny, like this...

he was big, fat, broad, strong, like that...

well, he too got lucky with diabetes!

So they took out an eye...

...he died.

So, for me, 1+1, that makes... two.

Well, confidence for confidence...

I have two uncles who died back in 1914...

Really?

...that'll never happen to me! So drink!

Come on...Drink up! Drink up!

I mustn't drink anymore...

Never...never, I'm off to the doctor.

Well...that's not the end of it...

You can have one glassful, Mr. Ratinier...

Per meal?

Oh no! Per day!!

How much have you been drinking everyday?

I dont know...5 or 6 liters... like Le Bomb!

What? You're crazy!

I should never have read this paper...

Anyway, we knew it's just lies in the papers...

...bullshit from politicians just to upset people...

Well, with all that, old man, you've made me late...

The hour is the hour...

...and... it's the hour of the "perniflard"...

I'm going to pour myself a wee drop...

if the smell doesn't bother you, with your diet...

Hey, "Le Glaude"... my water, without boasting...

it's the best around here... for soup...and for the "perniflard"!

There is underneath a phreatic layer...

there's nothing like it in the whole region...

When I think you got rid of your well for tap water...

...I want to crawl out of my pants in reverse!

But you know perfectly well that my Francine wanted it on the sink...

Women, they need the latest modern comforts these days...

Ah...they even want equality, those females...

They'll be cute, their little boys...

...if they create them all by themselves...

with all kind of shots somewhere...

They'll be giving birth to seahorses...

like those found in puddles...

or to diabetics...

El Glaude...

El Glaude...

El Glaude...

My water...

it has a temperature of great precision...

for the "perniflard"...

within 1 degree...

If it's icy cold, it slices through your stomach...

but this one...it slides down your guts...

like the morning dew on the leaves...look!

Take a look...

Oh, that was good, my Glaude...

Look!

I say, my Bomb, it's still in our little corner,

far from evil-doers,

that we can best wait for death.

I, for one, will never end up in an old-age home

I'd rather drown in my own well

like any true well-digger should!

That's it, and I should club myself to death on the head with a shoe,

like all true shoemakers should! Nonsense!

It's unbearable... |

We need a change of air!

Oh maman...oh mon Gla...

I'm being poisoned!

What's going on inside!...Oh mon Gla!

Oh...this one I danced over and over with Francine!

Light as a butterfly was she, the poor little child...

when we danced on Saint-Hyppolite's day...

or on St. Peter's or our Lady's day...

everywhere...only parties and dancing!

Now, my Cicisse...no more waltzes...

only two knights, as stupid as the moon...

under the moon!

You're not going to start crying...

you...old chimpanzee...

But I miss her, my Francine...

What do you want...women only happen to the living...

Take a look!

They're really beautiful, the stars!

They say there are millions and millions and millions...

Just listen to this!

Just listen to this!

Come on, get in!

What brings you here?

Hey, Le Glaude...

Get up!

Come and see!

There's a flying saucer in your field!

What have you done?

What terrible thing have you done?

You've murdered him, you accursed assassin!

You've massacred my best friend!

He's asleep!

But why did you come here, to my home...

and not somewhere else?|

But if you don't tell me...

I'll never know where you've escaped from...

you old Denre (foodstuff)?

...they're really beautiful, the stars!

...they say there are millions and millions and millions

...just listen to this!...just listen to this!

It's me and Le Bomb!|

You've heard us fart from up there?

But what did you think...that we were calling you?

Really?

Well, if you can't fart under the stars anymore without a Martian falling on your head...

...they'll be arriving by the wagonfuls!

Sacr nom di Diou!

You've given me a terrible thirst with all your antics!

Well, old Denre, we're in France...bottoms up!...hop!

Come on!

You don't like wine?...Your loss!

Now excuse me, pal... if it's only when we burp or fart...

that you understand us, we won't be chatting much!

First of all, Le Bomb and I only fart outside...

...we have manners...

We've been to restaurants!

But wait a minute!...you're not thirsty...

You're dying of hunger and you're ashamed to ask! Let's go!

Look! This is cabbage soup!

The real thing!

Made with my own cabbage...

...a spring variety: the "hasty bacalan"!

My lad, let's dig in!

Now we wait a little, till it soaks up the broth...

Never a dull moment with you, La Denre!

When I fart, you land on us from God knows where...

and when I smoke, you crash on the floor!

Come on!

My cabbage soup, laddie, perfumes your innards...

...makes you feel good along every inch of your guts...

It sticks to the body...

...it even does nice things to the head!

Shall I tell you? It makes you a better person!

OK, buddy, you're all set for the road! Let's go!

Ah...you want to take some away?

That's very easy, come along!

See... with this you can go for miles without losing a drop!

Cabbage soup!

Cabbage soup, my laddie!

I'll step out with you...

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René Fallet

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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