“He was a bold man that first ate an oyster.”
Discussion ranged around oysters and their favourable, chimerical qualities, not the least of which was their reproductive lifecycle, in which “an oyster is either male or female; but in some cases, both male and female sex organs are present. Interestingly, they can change sex during their lifetime from one to the other and possibly back again.” At some point in the discussion L threw out Jonathan Swift’s very admirable aphorism, as quoted above. The formulation seemed expandable. We thought we could pay homage to all the bold and anonymous gourmands in history who experimented with similar acts of unforeseen courage. The following game was devised, in which the nouns and action verb in Swift’s saying were individually replaced, one player at a time, with the substitutions hidden until the very end. The results, we think, enumerate the unsung heroes of the world, inordinately superior to the list of careerists commonly rolled out for Nobel prizes and the like.
He was a bold curriculumist / who first loved / a German dictionary.
She was a bold trapeze artist / who first shot blanks at / a fire-hydrant.
She was a bold ladyboy / who first blew / a beetle.
Hearsay / was a bold turkey / who first repaired / a bee’s nest.
They were a bold bunch of socks / that first knitted / a gramophone recording of Wagner.
They the ones with no motive were bold cacti / who first punched / a Cold-War era steamship.
She was a bold spinster / who first cooked up / an alien collective of squirrels.
It was a bold book / that first quilted / a Platypus.
They were bold cobblers / that first sent into the Sun / a caterpillar.
(Played by L, JA, PP on July 18th 2017. Drawing by L.)