Wednesday, May 4, 2011

THE GRAND CHARLES: PRESIDENTIAL CORKSCREW by P.B. Lecron

The ineffable Charles de Gaulle.
My nifty but clunky rabbit-form corkscrew gave up the ghost yesterday, a casualty of too many stubborn resin corks in inexpensive bottles of wine. Its breaking just before dinner created quite a stir in the kitchen drawer as we fished for another corkscrew. That was when we learned from the token French person present that the old classic chrome lever model we were looking for--and one that nearly every Frenchman's grandfather has or had--is fondly called le Grand Charles.


Why? With each turn of the the corkscrew its two levers rise symmetrically like two arms spreading up and out in the typical Charles de Gaulle victory gesture.



Pushing the upright levers downward lifts the cork out. Oh no, another one of those...

Vocabulary
rendre l'├óme:  to render one's soul to his maker; in the case of an inanimate object, to quit working; to give up the ghost
un tire-bouchon:  a corkscrew
un bouchon:  a cork
un levier:  a lever

Text & photos with the exception of Charles de Gaulle ©2011 P.B. Lecron

3 comments:

  1. Haha so charming!

    Wish I could say the same with my last Charles de Gaulle airport experience... haha

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  2. http://rosamarrero.blogspot.com/2011/05/untitled-video-by-hoy.html

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