Monday, December 14, 2009

The only fictional character to be honoured with a front page obituary in The New York Times

Miss CB and I spent the day together, it's been a busy month and it felt right to take a day off to unwind and reconnect. We ignored our respective to-do lists and settled on the sofa to watch an Agatha Christie mystery. We both love dear Dame Christie, and we both agree that David Suchet is the perfect Hercule Poirot (Peter Ustinov is a close second).

David Suchet's Poirot almost always wears a tiny vase as a lapel pin, with a miniature flower in it, usually white, but often red and even purple. Is it called a boutonniere? It's more than just a flower, it's a tiny water-holding VASE. Miss CB and I want one each, we have decided Poirot will now be our fashion icon.


But Monsieur Poirot is really much more than that. Poirot is really my first love. Stop it Eurolush, stop LAUGHING, that is NOT funny. Hmph.

Now, where was I? Ah. Yes. I first met Poirot when I was 10 years old and I came across an entire shelf of Agatha Christie books in my local library. I proceeded to read every single Christie starring Poirot, I tried Jane Marple but it just didn't feel right. Only Poirot would do.

I also liked to read Poirot's dialogue out loud, and I often did, so often in fact that my family took it for granted. "Oh, that noise from Eleanor's room? Why, no, she doesn't have a deep-voiced friend with a French accent, that's just Eleanor reading Poirot. To herself. Out loud. It's nothing."

Poirot actually helped me learn English, because a little Israeli girl with a thick Hebrew accent needs to practice reading English quite a bit. That can be pretty dull and often frustrating and difficult, and sometimes a little Belgian friend with a thick accent and a disdain for British pomposity is just what is needed. N'est-ce pas?

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ah, Poirot ...
paola

Mary said...

Mais oui, bien sur...

Julia said...

I love Poirot too. And have you run into the facsimile hardback editions of his books? They are really the most delicious reading around for those days when only Agatha Christie will do!

Badger said...

Tiny vase for a tiny bouquet = tussy mussy. Google "tussy mussy pin" and you'll see loads. They are sweet!

I LOVE Christie's Poirot books. Have I told the story about how I first came to discover them? My 7th grade Language Arts teacher (Language Arts = reading, writing, grammar, etc. - I don't know what you call it there), who was a very gruff older woman and yelled a lot at the rotten kids who gave her a hard time, noticed that I always brought a book to class so I could read when I'd finished my work. She asked me what sort of books I liked to read, and I told her mysteries (thinking Nancy Drew and that sort of thing). The next day she pulled me aside after class and presented me with a large paper grocery sack of Agatha Christie paperback novels, all gently used. I thanked her and said that I would return them the moment I'd finished them, but she told me I could keep them! I was gobsmacked. No one who wasn't a member of my family had ever done anything like that for me. I read every one of those books and I still have them all. I'll never get rid of them.

kmkat said...

I love Agatha Christie mysteries! We had tons of them when I was growing up; my mother was a mystery fan, although she tended to prefer Erle Stanley Gardner's Perry Mason to Poirot or Marple. David Suchet IS the perfect Poirot.

eurolush said...

Just left you the most humorous, witty, delightful comment...not to mention, eloquent, charming and extremely long-winded...only to have it ERASED by horrible internet evil forces. I am now shaking with rage.

Must begin another comment--a clean-break so to speak, so as not to filter aforementioned rage on to this delicious post.

eurolush said...

I am so NOT laughing. Poirot is a FOX. He is totally my type. As for the gussy, fussy "tussy-mussy," PERFECTION.

Now, let's discuss your 10 year old self reading Agatha Christie alone in your bedroom...while MY 10 year old self was reading Beverly Cleary's "Ramona and Beezus." That's just all kindsa messed-up right there.

And I might also mention that your young Israeli girl with a thick Hebrew accent was probably completely adorable? It HAD to be cuter than my early adolescent, awkwardly-dressed chubbiness. Wait. Did I just say "early adolescent" awkwardly-dressed chubbiness? Sorry. I meant "all of childhood, young- adulthood and also possibly current adulthood awkwardly-dressed chubbiness."