Archive for April, 2008


Wild, Wild West

April 30, 2008

Sorry, my friend, I do not even know of the Fine Young Cannibals song you mention. In fact, I am really only aware of one of their songs: Wild, Wild West. (But really, what a song: “Livin’ in the 80’s… something, something 90s…something something Wild, Wild West.” You know how it is, the classic songs always stick in your head.)

As far as your asterisking…perhaps you should stop being a jack-asterisk and just accept defeat. (Maybe you’ll win Madame Bovary–not that it’s a competition.)

With my schedule a bit more open, now that I have stopped making my nightly sojourns to Shandy Hall, I’ve been catching up on some movie watching and non-Shandy reading, and let me tell you between Starting Out in the Evening, The Savages, and (deep breath) A Summer of Hummingbirds: Love, Art, and Scandal in the Intersecting Worlds of Emily Dickinson, Mark Twain, Harriet Beecher Stowe, & Martin Johnson Heade I’ve hit the jackpot on quality.

But I am sure all will pale in comparison to Madame B.

Well, until we start reading again or until I actually have something interesting to say, I am, as always…

Your twin,


Suspicious Minds

April 29, 2008

Did you mention the Fine Young Cannibals because their mid-80s hit “Suspicious Minds” fit so nicely with my last post?

Although you got all the questions right (Also acceptable for number 3 would have been “Boy I could go for some Totino’s Pizza Rolls right now”) don’t think you’re off the hook (This post is off the hook…does “off the hook” mean two different things?).  For all I know you just finally finished last night.

I guess we’ll never know…it’s unfortunate that your “victory” had to be questioned, but I’ve seen the way you play made up words in Scrabble so I’m still suspicious.   (Keep singing FYC, keep singing!).

Well let’s move past this ugliness, this strand of conversation is becoming a fugly mess (Thank you rhyming dictionary!  Sorry for what I said yesterday).  I’ll grant you a victory…but I’m asterick-izing it.

So congratulations on your victory* in beating me to the end of Tristram Shandy.


*Suspicious victory


A Few Words in Response

April 29, 2008

It’s really sad that our lively discussion had to end on such a nasty note. Doubting my veracity, quizzes, and perhaps most disconcerting of all you second-guessing the purchase of a rhyming dictionary. Sad, Jon, really sad.

You know what’s not sad: You pumpin’ up the jam of this little blog with a very well-placed C & C Music Factory reference. What’s next, Fine Young Cannibals?

Now as to my somewhat prolonged silence, I’ve been spending some time contemplating my extended visit to Shandyland. You know me, I enjoy some good contemplation. In the end there will be things that I miss (sausage-making comedy) and things that I don’t (treatises on noses, buttonholes, whiskers..the list could go on and on and on).

Now to answer your questions:

1. After Chapter XXV
2. Slop, being the dedicated professional that he is he has only one mistress: Lady Medicine (A trick question!)
3. As you read the final words of the book I have no doubt the following thought ran through you mind: “Wow, Justin is awesome. I wish I could be more like him.” (I just assume that thought is running on a continuous loop in your mind.)

Finally you second guessing the purchase of a rhyming dictionary? Now, if you had not bought that we would have had to discontinue our entirely rhyming conversations ages ago.

Yes, Twin Brother, this blog has taken a very ugly turn.



Things that make me go “Hmmm.”

April 28, 2008

First off doesn’t this post title just make the thumping bass of C & C Music Factory jump to the forefront of your musical memory?

Second…I’ll admit that I’m surprised not to have heard any closing thoughts from you re: Tristram Shandy yet.  If there’s one thing a Jeffryes twin loves it the sound and site of his own thoughts.

Curious, I thought.  And then I began to ponder more.

Mayhaps, Justin hasn’t written anything because he has nothing to say (if that is the case I’ll notify the Guinness officials).  And maybe he has nothing to say because he hasn’t actually finished the book!

It’s the only explanation I can fathom for your unusual silence…you posted that you had finished the book on Saturday night to beat me in finishing when you’re still in fact languishing somewhere around the midpoint of Book V.  Well played…but I’m on to you now.

So I’ve concocted some questions to see if you have truly finished the book…Are you ready for the Shandy Shakedown Showdown?

Question 1:  Where do chapters 18 and 19 unexpectedly appear in the Book IX?

Question 2:  What is the name of Slop’s wife introduced in Chapter 5 of Book IX?

Question 3:  What was I thinking as I read the final sentence of Tristram’s book?

So good luck, good sir.  Your good reputation rests on getting these answers correct. (That sentence had three instances of good in it…I need a thesaurus.–When I was buying reference books why oh why did I choose the rhyming dictionary over the thesuarus!?  Hindsight, 20/20 and all that.)

I’ll expect your answers soon.




April 27, 2008

That’s right…I’ve been hornswaggled (or boonedoggled or add you own ridiculous sounding word meaning hoodwinked).

I thought for sure that I was going to finish first…with our phone conversation last night and your telling me that you were going to stop after Book VIII. But no! That was a trick to give me a false sense of security so you could pull from behind and take victory from my hands! So instead I spent the evening watching Transformers (spoiler: There is not more than meets the eye) and trying to figure out if Optimus Prime was supposed to be a metaphor for God….I’ve typed to much! I forgot that the Autobots can monitor the World Wide Web: Best Movie EVER!

Well played…but I’m on to you from now on.

For the record I finished this morning about 10:13 (it may have been 10:12–it took me a second to get my phone out of my pocket to check.)

And all I have to say about the ending of the book is pfft. Pfft.

But I’ll admit that I’ll kind of miss Tristram and Trim and Toby and Slop…but not enough to ever read this book again.

Well since we’re both finished we’re ready for our next reading selection and I put a lot of thought into our second book. And I’ve decided on Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert. We’re moving across the Channel (or through the Chunnel) and up around a hundred years (?) to a story that might actually have a plot.

So get ready for bourgeois ennui, torrid carriage rides, and Emma’s ever-changing eye color. I think a tentative start date for discussion of the beginning of May will allow us enough time to finish up all Shandy-related business.

And in closing I’ll end with my favorite quotation from Tristram Shandy it comes from the infamous sausage filling sequence:

“There is nothing so awkward as courting a woman, an’ please your honour, whilst she is making sausages…”

Well said.

And I remain

Your twin in reading (and, you know, DNA),



Done and Done!

April 27, 2008

That’s right twin brother, tonight I turned the last page in TLAOOTSG.

I know it’s not a competition or a race to see who can finish the book first, but…


I’ll have some actual thoughts re: the episode with the steamy knee masssage, further thoughts on Tristram’s flight from an anthropomorphized Death (still…whatnow?), and many, many other comments on sundry topics.

That’s it for now,




April 26, 2008

Well, the Shandy Shindig (which I have decided, for the sake of minimizing typing, to refer to from here on out as the Shan-dig) is off to a rollicking start. Corporal Trim and Toby brought the pretzels and soda. Mama and Papa Shandy brought the board games. Obidiah “brought charades.” (Oh that, Obidiah) Dr. Slop brought some hotwings And Tristram…well, Tristram brought Tristram.

I think Tristram is going to be the first one voted of the island.

Did I forget to mention the Shan-dig has a Survivor theme? Survivor: Shandy Hall.

At long, long last I made it through Volume VI. I was making such good progress that I kept on reading and I am about 1/2 way through Tristram’s journey abroad. I may have missed the Shandy Express you’re riding on, but I was able to catch the Shandy Acela–so I may just catch-up yet.

Now, a point of clarification: Did Tristram go on his cross Channel trip to escape Death? I mean I like a far-fetched plot twist as much as the next guy, but fleeing Death?

Really, Tristram? Really?

I am your quite confused twin,