Sunday, May 18, 2014

220 Quiz Answer


Madame Defarge is a fictional character in the book A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens.
(Also for Three Word Wednesday and ABC Wednesday: "S" is for "special")

There’s been quite a lot in the news lately about executions.

What has set it off, of course, is the famous botched attempt to do away with someone legally in Oklahoma on April 29. 

For many years there have been those who are in favor of the death penalty and those who are against.  My guess is that even those solidly for executions might be against the procedure if they knew it was to be a lethal injection attempted by non-skilled types using questionable drugs, obtained questionably, like the three-drug cocktail they tried using in Oklahoma. 

As soon as those involved realized what a massive botch it was becoming, what a strain it was for everyone, they tried to stop the execution.  Evidently no one had thought much about how you can stop killing someone once you’ve started. 

But I didn’t really want to talk about lethal injections, ruined or not, today.  I got to thinking about the folks for whom executions are a kind of entertainment.  They are execution junkies.  They want to be on the scene as the deed is done.

They try to be on the list of the spectators, mostly media types, who carefully watch the procedure, recording all that’s happening. 

I became especially interested in a woman who became known for this proclivity, showing up at executions so often she achieved a sort of fame.

Now you’d think that anyone who had such a passion to witness legal killings would be a special person.  She was special.

In fact, to come right out with it, she was odd.

You see, what was strange about her was this: she was a hobbyist.  She knitted.  No matter where she was she would always have with her yarns and needles; especially if she was lucky enough to attend an execution.

In spite of any problems the executioners might have with the executionee, she would go on knitting away, avidly taking in all the action, creating another pair of socks for some more or less lucky relative.

Oh, and one other thing about her.  She wasn’t just special, she was totally a work of fiction.

I’ll bet my best pair of hand-knitted sox that quite a number of you remember reading about her.

What the Dickens was her name?

24 comments:

Roger Owen Green said...

I knew that Dickens had written against capital punishment, especially the public spectacle. Madame Lafarge

Altonian said...

It will be the best of times if you agree this is Madame Defarge; the worst of times if you tell me I'm wrong.

Berowne said...

We've got a couple of "winners" to start off with: Roger Owen Green and Altonian.

Jinksy said...

Madame Defarge, naturellement.LOL

Kathe W. said...

my goodness me- I knew the answer before the end of your post....
Madame Defarge! Tending to her knitting of names.

Berowne said...

Jinksy and Kathe W have both coughed up the right answer.

naturgesetz said...

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. Madame Defarge was there.

Berowne said...

Naturgesetz, comme toujours, submitted the correct answer.

rel said...

Madame Thérèse Defarge?

Berowne said...

Another right answer, this time from rel.

Truedessa said...

I'll have to get back with you on this one??? Pondering

kaykuala said...

Madame Defarge it is Berowne!

Hank

Kutamun said...

Our very own First Female Prime Minister Julia Gillard made a bizarre press call a couple of years ago, at the height of clandestine attempts to topple her, she sat in front of all the cameras knitting , and said her favourite rock band was DeBarge ......strange

Berowne said...

A few more with the correct answer: Kutamun and kaykuala.

Kate said...

I taught the Tale of Two Cities for years, but cannot accurately recall her name: Madame Defarge?? Anyway you know who I mean. She is very diabolical and loves to knit as she watches the guillotine do their work.

Reader Wil said...

It reminds me of a Tale of Two Cities, where knitting women were watching the executions of French aristocrats.
Wil, ABCW Team

Hildred said...

Madame LaFarge?

Berowne said...

Kate, Reader Wil and Hildred have joined our happy group with the right answer.

Leslie: said...

Madame Defarge from Dickens' "A Tale of Two Cities" about the French Revolution.

Gattina said...

I am against death penalty !! In so many cases it turned out to have been a mistake. It's much harder to spent a whole life in prison !
Gattina
ABC Wednesday Team

Berowne said...

The latest with the correct answer: Leslie.

Sheilagh Lee said...

no idea

oldegg said...

Madame Defarge from Dickens "Tale of Two Cities"

Berowne said...

The latest with the right answer: oldegg.

 
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