Le Blog de Jean-Paul Sartre
October 18, 2012 5:04 AM   Subscribe

An angry crow mocked me this morning. I couldn’t finish my croissant, and fled the café in despair.
— and other excerpts from Le Blog de Jean-Paul Sartre
posted by the mad poster! (53 comments total) 29 users marked this as a favorite

 
The page design filled me with nausea.
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:11 AM on October 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


print version. If it mattered.
posted by the mad poster! at 5:15 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


At least it's not on Tumblr.
posted by tommasz at 5:16 AM on October 18, 2012


That was really great.
posted by oddman at 5:17 AM on October 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


How I wish he did not have his Citroën up on blocks in the front yard!

how i wish that parodists of French existential crises knew that there are no front yards in paris

there are, instead, cours intérieures

my cats like to play in mine

this futile beanplating shall be yet more bits on the evanescent digital path of my fleeting existence

je ne suis pas un classeur de femmes
posted by fraula at 5:19 AM on October 18, 2012 [8 favorites]


I'm always up for Sartre parodies but this seemed a bit undergraduate for Eustace Tilley.

Maybe I'm living in the past.
posted by Egg Shen at 5:20 AM on October 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


I was hoping Camus would make an appearance. I was not disappointed.
posted by shakespeherian at 5:21 AM on October 18, 2012


It's weird that this is always the stereotype of existentialists, when existentialist thought has helped me be brave all my life. I mean, it's not as cheery as telling me that if I'm good I'll be rewarded for it, but strength doesn't come only from a hope of reward.
posted by winna at 5:27 AM on October 18, 2012 [23 favorites]


Thursday, 16 July, 1959: 7:45 P.M.
When S. returned this afternoon I asked her where she had been, and she said she had been in the street.
“Perhaps,” I said, “that explains why you look ‘rue’-ful.”
Her blank stare only reinforced for me the futility of existence.

the next 87 times i make a pun i'm going to want to follow it up by saying "rueful" and giggling and no one will know what i mean. which is generally what happens anyways.
posted by sio42 at 5:28 AM on October 18, 2012 [4 favorites]


"That was really great."

How trite and ordinary.
posted by Blasdelb at 5:31 AM on October 18, 2012


The cookbook is still the greatest thing ever.
posted by elizardbits at 5:39 AM on October 18, 2012 [17 favorites]


And I would totally watch Johnny Sart: PD Squad.
posted by shakespeherian at 5:46 AM on October 18, 2012


The cookbook is still the greatest thing ever.

Oh my goodness thank you for this gift. Weeping at my desk here.
posted by ominous_paws at 5:49 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


The pastry roller existed, I can tell you that.
posted by valkyryn at 5:49 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Enjoyed this immensely, as well as the cookbook.

Am somewhat apprehensive that my enjoyment may be viewed negatively by some here at Metafilter. My apprehensiveness is lessened, however, by the knowledge that those people are fatuous ninnies.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:56 AM on October 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


I took a Sartre class once. We read "Being and Nothingness", which is a very interesting book, although it has some problems. One of these is Sartre' s propensity for raising an issue that he knows is a problem for his argument, promising to address it later, and then never doing so. I remember the professor asked us "Would you cash a check for Sartre?". I had to say, no, I would not.
posted by thelonius at 6:24 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


The bit about Johnny Sart: PD Squad has some basis in reality as Sartre did have his name removed from the credits of a prestigious American movie. Hollywood didn't like 8-hour scripts, for some reason.
posted by elgilito at 6:35 AM on October 18, 2012


I started Being and Nothingness a while back and never finished, and lately thought about picking it up again, but that singular quote sticks in my mind...

"Nothingness lies coiled at the heart of being, like a worm"

What a fucking amazingly awesome quote, n'est ce pas?
posted by symbioid at 6:37 AM on October 18, 2012


I love that he wrote Critique of Dialectical Reason cranked to the eyeballs on speed.
posted by Egg Shen at 6:42 AM on October 18, 2012


"Nothingness lies coiled at the heart of being, like a worm"

Thing is, worms really don't coil all that much. Snakes coil, but worms? Not so much.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:43 AM on October 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


The fruit, it hung so low. I grasped it, pulled it greedily, but in prising it from the bough I was filled with shame. I turned my eyes upward to see, pendant from the upper limbs, beautiful apples that swayed with the wind. I looked to the fruit in my hands and saw that it was pocked, and bruised, and soft. I cast it aside and it rolled away.

Debased, I was lesser. I could not stir myself to ascend the tree in pursuit of the more tempting specimens that were out of my reach. I sat in the tree's shade, feeling the cool, damp earth and the blades of sparse grass.

I decided to write second-rate piecework for Shouts and Murmurs, perhaps selecting a trope that was tired ten years ago.

From the soil emerged a worm, my equal.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 6:43 AM on October 18, 2012 [4 favorites]


"I had too much food for lunch and now I'm tired"
posted by growabrain at 6:55 AM on October 18, 2012


Klaus Kinski if he had not have been famous.
posted by Artw at 7:23 AM on October 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


I love that he wrote Critique of Dialectical Reason cranked to the eyeballs on speed.

Philosophy has to be pretty high up there on the list of disciplines arranged by per capita drug consumption in decreasing order. The last conference that my girlfriend presented at gave each attendee six drink tickets for the evening.
posted by invitapriore at 7:46 AM on October 18, 2012


I can relate. crows are assholes
posted by ook at 7:48 AM on October 18, 2012


I can relate. crows are assholes

Hmph. I like to think of myself as a Harbinger of Death, TYVM.
posted by peacrow at 7:53 AM on October 18, 2012


I like crows, but boy do they bear a grudge. Seagulls on the other hand...
posted by Artw at 7:55 AM on October 18, 2012


... are smelly obnoxious jerks?
posted by elizardbits at 8:02 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thursday, 16 July, 1959: 7:45 P.M.
When S. returned this afternoon I asked her where she had been, and she said she had been in the street.
“Perhaps,” I said, “that explains why you look ‘rue’-ful.”
Her blank stare only reinforced for me the futility of existence.

the next 87 times i make a pun i'm going to want to follow it up by saying "rueful" and giggling and no one will know what i mean. which is generally what happens


I thought that was a cute bilingual pun until in the next day's entry he went on to explain it. That was like watching a comedian laugh at his own jokes. No.

It could have been worse, I suppose. Sartre issuing tweets.
posted by fuse theorem at 8:10 AM on October 18, 2012


I like to think of myself as a Harbinger of Death

like I said
posted by ook at 8:20 AM on October 18, 2012


This morning over breakfast S. asked me why I looked so glum.
“Because,” I said, “everything that exists is born for no reason, carries on living through weakness, and dies by accident.”
“Jesus,” S. said. “Aren’t you ever off the clock?”


I laughed so suddenly and hard at that point that I actually had a choking fit.
posted by Decani at 8:43 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


I hear all of this in the voice of Henri the existential cat.
posted by Azara at 8:46 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


yeah I was expecting to skim it in a jaded way but was surprised by how laugh-out-loud hilarious it was to me. Then the UPS thing and finally the No Exit movie tagline. I knew I had to share it with you guys at that point. That cookbook link is great too.

This seems like something more up McSweeney's alley but it just goes to show that the contributors at ol' Eustace's stomping grounds can still do these things as good as anyone
posted by the mad poster! at 9:03 AM on October 18, 2012


Because I'm vaguely nervous about an upcoming exam that expects you to have read broadly in various philosophical traditions, all I could muster was a blank glazed stare.

Until the ending twist! That was entertaining. Thanks, the mad poster!
posted by undue influence at 9:33 AM on October 18, 2012


I thought that was a cute bilingual pun until in the next day's entry he went on to explain it. That was like watching a comedian laugh at his own jokes. No.

Um that was the point, it was Sartre being bad at comedy.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:35 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Eh, it's somewhat amusing. Myself, I prefer the real life utterances of the inimitable Werner Herzog.

Well they are very frightening for me because their stupidity is so flat. You look into the eyes of a chicken and you lose yourself in a completely flat, frightening stupidity. They are like a great metaphor for me... I kind of love chicken, but they frighten me more than any other animal.

As a bonus, further own the WQ page, are some choice (actual) quotes from Klaus Kinski about the man.

His speech is clumsy, with a toadlike indolence, long winded, pedantic, choppy. The words tumble from his mouth in sentence fragments, which he holds back as much as possible, as if they were earning interest. It takes forever and a day for him to push out a clump of hardened brain snot. Then he writhes in painful ecstasy, as if he had sugar on his rotten teeth. A very slow blab machine. An obsolete model with a non-working switch — it can't be turned off unless you cut off the electric power altogether. So I'd have to smash him in the kisser. No, I'd have to knock him unconscious. But even if he were unconscious he'd keep talking. Even if his vocal cords were sliced through, he'd keep talking like a ventriloquist. Even if his throat were cut and his head were chopped off, speech balloons would still dangle from his mouth like gases emitted by internal decay.
posted by Skot at 9:38 AM on October 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


John Paul Sartre for Dodge Dartre.
posted by jessamyn at 9:57 AM on October 18, 2012 [4 favorites]


I thought that was a cute bilingual pun until in the next day's entry he went on to explain it. That was like watching a comedian laugh at his own jokes. No.

Um that was the point, it was Sartre being bad at comedy.

Um, no, I think that point had already been made. The added explanation was apparently for people who don't know that "rue" has different meanings in English and French. It was like a laugh track added to a sitcom.
posted by fuse theorem at 11:25 AM on October 18, 2012


I read the Cookbook bit years ago, and it left me weeping with laughter.
posted by uberchet at 12:04 PM on October 18, 2012


Werner and Klaus, what a pair...
posted by Artw at 12:06 PM on October 18, 2012


It could have been worse, I suppose. Sartre issuing tweets.

That was Wittgenstein.
posted by srboisvert at 12:37 PM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Johnny B Sart

Bwah ha!

posted by mmrtnt at 12:37 PM on October 18, 2012


I thought that was a cute bilingual pun until in the next day's entry he went on to explain it. That was like watching a comedian laugh at his own jokes. No.

Um that was the point, it was Sartre being bad at comedy.

Um, no, I think that point had already been made. The added explanation was apparently for people who don't know that "rue" has different meanings in English and French. It was like a laugh track added to a sitcom.
posted by fuse theorem at 7:25 PM on October 18


Um, no, shakespeherian has it right. Painstakingly and unnecessarily explaining a punchline is a standard sign of a humourless person so it was funny to have Sartre doing that. You really think it was just to explain the meaning of the word "rue"? And yet there was no similar need felt to explain "tête de mouton"?
posted by Decani at 3:09 PM on October 18, 2012


so it was funny to have Sartre doing that

Perhaps it was supposed to be funny.
posted by fuse theorem at 4:14 PM on October 18, 2012


Ah, yes. Nothing quite so endearing of human nature as seeing people argue over whether or not something is funny.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:32 PM on October 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


I don't think you get to go from 'How stupid to leadenly explain the joke for the benefit of those who don't know French words' to 'This device isn't as funny as it set out to be' and have it still be the same argument.
posted by shakespeherian at 5:41 PM on October 18, 2012


I had a wonderful croissant in Paris once.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:44 PM on October 18, 2012


I don't think you get to go from 'How stupid to leadenly explain the joke for the benefit of those who don't know French words' to 'This device isn't as funny as it set out to be' and have it still be the same argument.

I don't think you get to set the parameters of my opinion.

The part that wasn't funny--to me--was what I considered to be unnecessary explanation of the double meanings of "rue". Since perhaps it wasn't clear, I was specifically referring to that part of the piece. I don't agree with the statement that "it was funny to have Sartre doing that." In my view the point had already been made that Sartre was dour and humorless and his going on about how and why the rue pun was funny was not needed. Why would a blogging Sartre be expected to be good at comedy? I don't think he was supposed to be funny (or trying to be); I saw the notion of Sartre futilely trying to express his angst via a blog as the joke.

YMMV.
posted by fuse theorem at 9:57 PM on October 18, 2012


In my view the point had already been made that Sartre was dour and humorless

Physician, heal thyself!
posted by ominous_paws at 11:15 PM on October 18, 2012


Sartre was dour and humorless
but be thankful your brain is still tumorless
cause a brain tumor's bad
it'd make you quite sad
that's the rumor, at least, we're not rumorless
posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:17 AM on October 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


but be thankful your brain is still tumorless

Oh FFS. I can't say that I didn't think one part of the piece wasn't funny without having a brain tumor invoked upon me? Okay, I'm sorry. That bit about the rue? Hilarious. How could I not have seen it? Gee, maybe I have a brain tumor. I guess I must now defer to everyone's superior opinions.

This seems like something more up McSweeney's alley

Yes, it does. I don't read the The New Yorker except Andy Borowitz's column onlne.
posted by fuse theorem at 11:45 AM on October 19, 2012


Yes indeed, I'll tell you what, that croissant in Paris was good, man, I mean GOOD.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:56 PM on October 19, 2012


"The fruit, it hung so low."

My son said, "Why are you crying?" That's how hard I was laughing.
posted by sneebler at 11:54 AM on October 20, 2012


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