After sneezing alone in a room, does anyone else quietly say “A-tissue“, by way of pedantic clarification for a non-existent audience? Hmm, OK then—probably just me…
It now also serves as a homage to Winnie the Pooh, hapless bête-brune of the current CCP (bless). From “Eeyore loses a tail”:
“The thing to do is as follows. First, Issue a Reward. Then—”
“Just a moment,” said Pooh, holding up his paw. “What do we do to this—what were you saying? You sneezed just as you were going to tell me.”
“I didn’t sneeze.”
“Yes, you did, Owl.”
“What I said was. ‘First Issue a Reward’.”
“You’re doing it again!” said Pooh, sadly.
With all due respect to A.A. Milne (“the true voice of England in the 1930s”, as Alan Bennett notes), the exchange would work better if Owl had said “The question at issue…” But hey.
In Polish Winnie the Pooh is Kubus Puchatek, in Norwegian Ole Brumm—names to conjure with. In Italian he is Uini Puh, though I like the 1936 version Ninni Puf; Piglet is Pimpi, and Eeyore Ih-Oh (for more, see here).
Winnie the Pooh was one of the first to be subjected to the “Tao of…” franchise (and one thinks—doesn’t one—of the 4th-century Baopuzi 抱朴子 Master Who Embraces Simplicity). And for incurable classicists, there’s Winnie Ille Pu:
“Res exsequenda id est: praemium promittimus.”
“Paulisper subsiste,” dixit Pu ungulam sublevans. “Quid faciamus? Quid dixisti? Loquendo enim sternuisti.”
“Habe me, Pu, excusatum, minime sternui. Nequimus inscüs nobis sternuere.”
“Optime audivi: prr–prr!”
“Dixi: praemium promittimus.”
On a musical note, for a classic recording, click here.
I have a Chinese friend whose online handle is Aqu—although for sneezing in various languages, see here.
Some other pleasantly fatuous comments that I can still never resist:
- when someone trips up, I just have to say “Enjoy your trip?”
- on putting down my suitcase, “I rest my case”
- and for my obligatory comment every time I pass the roadworks sign, see here.