A Conversation for Terry Pratchett's Discworld

This has been bugging me for ages

Post 1

Langly

Can anyone explain the following exchange from Wyrd Sisters please? I've tried the annotated Pratchett files with no luck...

Fool: "Is there a tavern open around here?"
Tomjon: "See all those tavern signs?"
Fool: "Yes. Gosh. There's hundreds."
Tomjon: "Right. See the one at the end, with the blue and white sign?"
Fool: "Yes. I think so."
Tomjon: "Well, as far as I know, that's the only one around here that's ever closed."


I just know it's going to be a glaringly obvious reference, but i'm afraid it's going right over my head smiley - biggrin

smiley - rainbow Lx


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 2

Zerobunny

me thinks its just reffering to the fact the fools a fool? (but dont have the book to hand to read the surrounding text)
seems to me the fool can see hundreds of open taverns and asked a foolish question, living up to his titlesmiley - smiley


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 3

andyc510

If I remember rightly the fool follows it with "We'll go there then" or something similar? It always seemed to me that the one that closes is going to be the most 'respectable' (an extremely relative term in Ankh-Morpork), where they do kick out the drunks occasionally and presumably have some control over the patrons. smiley - cheers


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 4

Thewyrdsister (13-01+9+21=42), Thursdayite!

Are you thinking about "the one with the blue and white sign", or don't you understand the joke in the passage?

I find it quite obvious that the Fool has lived all of his life in lancre : Not that many taverns, and he comes to Ankh Morpork : a huge city, and asks if there might be somewhere that's open...and only one of the taverns ever closes... The difference of countryside and city...

But I don't know if there's a reference in the mentioning of the blue and white sign...

smiley - magic


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 5

Langly

smiley - smiley Hello. Yes, it's the reference to the blue and white sign that's puzzling me, I can't help feeling there's a gag in there somewhere.

smiley - rainbow Lx


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 6

docsharp

Golly I'll have to read some of the books then, that sketch seemed blindingly obvious to me, perhaps it shouldn't have.

A blue and white sign is a bit less obvious than a cross.

Think about it, the blue and white sign points to a tavern that is more exclusive. Pratchet could have made it a bit more obvious if he'd have stated that the Tavern indicated by the blue and white sign was only fully open on Sundays.

But then I guess he didn't want his book burned in the States.


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 7

Irving Washington

I'm not sure there's any meaning to the fact that the sign is blue and white, the joke is that there's only one tavern in town that closes.


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 8

docsharp

As I said perhaps it shouldn't have appeared blindingly obvious, cause it appeared like a hilariously deep dig at the church. As in they are the only ones that are closed minded at times, via ritual.

It is very funny in here at timessmiley - laugh

Perhaps it's just an in joke that's best not airedsmiley - erm


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 9

Irving Washington

I wasn't aware of any connection between Christianity and the colors blue and white. Blue and white makes me think Judaism.


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 10

docsharp

Well that's an even deeper meaning then, cause Judaism can certainly be closed minded about certain things. I think the joke bit was that it could be said about any faction that on certain things they are closed minded some of the time. Some of the time they can be very open minded and free thinking though.

Generally you go to a Tavern to drink, in a certain sense to drink something in, means to percieve something. There are places to find stuff out all over this world, there are just some places to find stuff out that are closed sometimes.smiley - cool (are we in Ank Morpork?)

It just got a bit less funny as I am not a Jew. I dunno sometimes it just seems OK to laugh at yourself?


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 11

docsharp

Incidentally funny to think what Ankh symbolises, sure you know!


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 12

Irving Washington

I'm not sure why there needs to be any deeper meaning to that joke in the context of that conversation. Unless there's something else in the book (which I either haven't gotten around to reading, or have forgotten about) that makes that reading make sense, a tavern is a tavern. Only one closes.


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 13

docsharp

Not many people are sure why complex numbers exist either. their existance helps solve real problems though. Deeper meanings to me help confirm something that you wouldn't be interested in probably. Sometimes they bring things to life more, sometimes they do the oposite, read shallowly, if it makes people happy it must be good, mustn't it, otherwise I guess you could get a headache.smiley - smiley


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 14

Irving Washington

I love deeper meanings. Many of the Discworld jokes have deeper meanings. I'm not saying there's no deeper meaning here, either, just that I don't see anything that leads me to it. If there's something I'm missing, let me know.

If you tell me that, for instance, "The Walrus and the Carpenter" from Alice in Wonderland is about Eastern v. Western Religion, or England and France dividing up the world's resources, or whatever, I'll see where you're coming from because the poem obviously has power relationships in it. On the other hand, that doesn't mean that everything written in every book or story has an alternate interpretation. I'm pretty sure that, for instance, while Monty' Python's "Life of Brian" is chock-full-o deeper meanings, "the Fish Slapping Dance" from Flying Circus is just a silly joke and meant to be taken as such.

As far as things that make people happy being good? Crystal Meth makes some people happy, and I'm pretty sure that's not good.


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 15

docsharp

No offence intended ohnest,

It's just that I am beginning to realise that certain things have different deeper meanings to different people. This one just glared at me and sounded funny that's all. I'm sure that there was no intention to be antisemetic when writing, it's just a case of Beauty is in the eye of the beholder or for whom the bell tolls kind of thing. You sound a heck of a lot better read than I am.

But is interpretation of things a function of the concious or sub concious mind, or a bit of both and are subliminal messages being bounced around conciously or subconciously.

Of course I don't believe that everything that makes you happy is good, that's just silly, but some people just seem to get stuff and others don't, it isn't necessarily a problem more something we have to live with and hopefully accomodate. I guess that's life.

Peoples views on God are getting me down at the moment and deeper meanings are mentioned in the Bible as one of the resurected Jesus' "criticisms" of the human race at that time.


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 16

Irving Washington

I spent exactly 2 semesters of my life as a theatre major at University. I learned approximately one useful thing, and that was from my script analysis professor. There is no right or wrong interpretation of a script (or poem, film, book, etc). Author's intent does not matter nearly as much as whether you can back up your interpretation. So as long as there's a reason that you attach meaning to the blue and white sign, then it's not wrong to do so. I was mostly wondering whether there was something I was missing about the colors blue and white that made the tavern=church association make more sense.


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 17

docsharp

I didn't see the significance of the blue and white until you pointed it out. The reason I made the connection was from the fact that it was sometimes closed as some places are, i.e. the church of the day were closed to the idea that the messiah had arrived, just I suspect as most churches would be closed if he turned up today or tomorrow.
The name Ankh Morpork makes more sense now when you point out Blue and white are Jewish.
Ankh-Egyptian symbol for something to do with eternal Life.
Morpork-Jews dont eat pork, or put another way pig meat, i.e. food that comes from a pig.....i.e. they don't digest any food (for thought) that comes from anyone that's pig headed.

Why I make these connections...I don't know...just helps to see some sense in what appears to be madness I guess. Although making these interpretations makes me appear mad at times.


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 18

Irving Washington

So, any time anything is closed, you think of religion?


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 19

docsharp

No, just this time, cause it fits with another subject that I was reading about. It also sort of ties in with the other conversation I've seen about Hogswatch and Christmas. Don't say that you don't think we should think about Christianity at Christmas, that's normal...isn't it?smiley - erm
I know that Hogswatch is not even on Christmas day and I think that raises another very good point!

The whole of the Disk world idea seems to be based on some of the ideas people have about, God/Gods and creation in general. Big bang theory I had a great laugh at that one!


This has been bugging me for ages

Post 20

Irving Washington

I thought we were meant to think about presents on Christmas smiley - winkeye


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