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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Marie Antoinette Eats Cake, parts 669 - 672

669. The argument between Buboni and the Duck always took different forms, but I think it boiled down to this, the Duck loved life and the world, so he had to believe in a wonderful God who creates and enjoys it all, because the Duck was a happy soul. And Buboni was a bitter old man angry with God, and looking to pick a fight with him. I thought it best to change the subject so I said, "Tell me Duck what has all of this got to do with Marie Antoinette."

670. "Marie Antoinette, my God what a subject," said the Duck, "But before we get to that, let me say this to you Buboni. Ten years of a life may have no meaning, even twenty, but eventually comes a day  that is worth a lifetime. So it was with Coromo and the Decameron, so it was with Richard when he cast his hand in plaster, so it was for you when you left your job in England and fled to France, and so for me... once... But now, about Marie Antoinette.

671. As I hope you know, Marie Antoinette was the daughter of Maria Teresa, Empress of Austria, and one of 15 children.  Hers was a typical royal upbringing. Her tutors schooled her in several languages, drawing and painting, and especially music from an early age. Little Marie was very precocious and did well in all of these subjects except for music. It is not that she had no musical ability, but she was an average child when it came to learning to play an instrument.

673. Music was important to the Empress and she saw to it that Marie had the best teachers, but as one of the music masters informed her, "A ten year old  cannot be expected to play Bach fugues."  The Empress would not listen to negative pronouncements about her daughter and replied, "They say Mozart is ten and is not only playing Bach fugues, but composing them as well you 'katunz'. (Katunz was a German word used by peasants to describe a blockhead.)

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