September 11, 2003

Party Trick

"Here. Get me a big knife" said Trish to the total stranger, our best friend Joe whose home we were visiting for the purpose of helping him move some large items before next week's cider pressing.

She held the bottle of champagne Joe offered us, using our tiny efforts of help as an excuse to celebrate.

"No, get me the biggest knife you have" she said; and Joe hunted down a veritable kitchen machete.

"We'll *&%%$##\@ the champagne open" she said enthusiastically, using what was obviously a slurry french word to describe what it was she intended to do to our bubbly beverage. "We'll have to go outside" she said, as we followed her out the side door quite dumbfounded by what it was she intended to do with that huge knife and the cold green bottle, now with it's foil and wire wrappings removed.

What happened next is a blur, as people often say after an accident. Things run together. Trish was standing there holding the bottle pointing toward a passing cirrus cloud, knife blade laid down along the slanting side of the bottle, butt of the knife toward the cork. In the fog of the moment there was a quick motion of the knife, cool amber bubbles gushed forth and obviously the bottle was now somehow open. The decapitated head lay on the driveway, intact cork surrounded by a collar of dark glass. The abruptly truncated neck of the bottle, headless, was perfectly round, perfectly smooth, as if an invisible weld had been miraculously released. We filled our glasses, Ann suspiciously, looking for broken glass slivers as a vigilent mother must always do.

Maybe this happens every day in the urbane existance of my city-dwelling world travelling blogger buddies. But here in the backwaters of the bigger world, the Sabre Champagne is a thing worth at least two columns in the Floyd Press. And you can be darn sure, Joe will always remember our friend Trish. And Trish, did I get the quotation marks "right" this time ? :-}

You can read about this phenomenon, in a quirky French to English translation. Eeees a hoot, no?

Posted by fred1st at September 11, 2003 07:58 AM | TrackBack

"Oh dear. Now the world will know," she said. And the French translation EES a hoot. It's awkward, but you get its drift.

Posted by: trish at September 11, 2003 08:55 AM

I've never heard of opening champagne this way (how much of it ever gets into your glass, I wonder?), but reading the translation was a hoot very much, oui monsieur! What, do you suppose, are "range children"?

Posted by: doc rock at September 11, 2003 10:52 AM

to doc rock: actually, I think I was amongst my generation's "free-range children." Only caged occasionally, I was allowed to forrage freely across our family farm. Very humane upbringing, but I still wouldn't eat me.
Trish, I must learn of your technique. Whenever I or my friends have tried, one would be RIGHT to look for slivers of glass...

Posted by: nathan at September 11, 2003 12:05 PM

Doc-Roc: Here's the French:
bien que la lame se soit pas tranchante, il est prudent de ne pas laisser porte des enfants

Which is: Even though the blade is not sharp, it is prudent not to leave the sword within the reach of children. (in children's range of motion, sort of, my guess is the program's direct translation.)

Nate: Follow the instructions on this site, especially the little pictures, and you too can amaze your friends and leave lasting impressions on complete strangers!

Posted by: trish at September 11, 2003 03:50 PM

Oh, and if you do it right, only a few drops escape the bottle. You have someone holding a glass right at your side. As soon as the top flies off, you swing the bottle over the glass. Voila! Important, and I think this is in the instructions, that the champagne is WELL RESTED. Don't bounce a bottle of champagne on the floorboards of your pickup to a party and expect this trick to work. You'll blow the entire top off, glass everywhere. Take it from one who knows.

Posted by: trish at September 11, 2003 03:53 PM

I will not be attempting this anytime in the near future, but thanks!

Posted by: :: jozjozjoz :: at September 11, 2003 04:36 PM

Au contraire, cherie--*I* will be working this stunt into my party repertoire, tout de suite! I am, after all, in possession of a brand new machete that doesn't cut anything, so imagine how thrilled I am, to actually have something to do with it.

Posted by: Doc Rock at September 11, 2003 06:30 PM

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