Monday, 7 November 2016

In The Phoenix House

" the respectable dimness of the Phoenix House..." (Rise Of The Terran Empire, p. 502), Arinnian and Tabitha consume:

a catflower cocktail;
piscoid and tomato chowder;
beef and shua pie;
clustergrain leaf salad;
coffee spiced with witchroot;
a bottle of vintage dago.

Human beings and Ythrians increasingly eat mixed cuisines.

Tabitha suggests a drink in the Nest, the only public house in Centauri designed for ornithoids, expecting this to be to Arinnian's taste. Instead, he feels that taverns are wrong for Ythrians.

"'Yet you don't mind when humans imitate Ythrians. Uh-uh. Can't have it on both wings, son.'" (p. 504)

Tabitha uses an Ythrian phrase to make her point. Earlier, she had said:

"'...a man or woman who tries to be an Ythrian is a rattlewing.'" (p. 502)

Another Ythrian phrase! - but a valid remark.


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

And the Phoenix House reminded me of the Old Phoenix Inn! Perhaps Poul Anderson hoped readers who had read the Old Phoenix to remember that?

And we on Terra and most human colonized worlds in and out of the Empire would have said: "Uh-uh. Can't have it both ways, son." And, "...a man or woman who tries to be an Ythrian is a fool" is how most of us would have put it.


David Birr said...

Paul and Sean:
She's being a bit unfair. He's NOT trying to have it both ways. He's trying to repudiate his humanity and regard Ythrians as wholly superior — he's as bigoted as any Klansman, but against his own species. Trying to be something he's physically incapable of being....

He rather decidedly rubs me the wrong way.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, DAVID!

yes, your comment explains better puts why Christopher Holm's denigrating of the human race in this part of the book was irritating me so much.