Friday, February 24, 2012

Steadfast friends: the tonneau killer and the pince-monseigneur

The Trappou is only one of many interesting characters in our new house.

To the right, for example,
is our pince-monseigneur.
He weighs about thirty-five pounds
and if you are feeling blue or are tired of sitting and typing words at a desk, you can just mosey on over and pick him up and snip yourself a piece of iron or so.

Pince-monseigneur means "pinch-my-master" and was originally used to designate a cat's claw of the type burglars used to force locks, but our pincher is very well-behaved and far too busy clipping metal for reinforced concrete structures and helping frazzled translators let off steam to engage in any kind of criminal activity.

To your left as you walk in our front door is a rough-and-tumble character known on the street as "Tonneau Killer."

Julien picked him up at the dump, and while at first glance he seems like a ferocious and desperate receptacle, he is actually a very humble, very generous, very self-deprecating rain barrel.

The Tonneau family has a long and storied past: there are the illustrious wine containers, the shelters for merchants and public writers, the horse-drawn conveyances, and some distant cousins in professional swimming (the little flip you do to change directions when you get to the end of a lap is a Tonneau) but they have fallen on hard times, so we try to be discreet with Tonneau Killer (TK or Tony for short) about his past.

In addition to acting as our doorman, TK keeps an eye on our rockpile, helps Julien wash his tools, and trades fashion advice with the Trappou. And if ever the pince-monseigneur gets any ideas, TK will be on hand to talk him out of it.

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