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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Novels in three lines

 by John MacBeath Watkins

This is what happens when you let an anarchist write stories for a newspaper. In 1906, Felix Feneon wrote the following police beat report for a Paris newspaper:

A dishwasher from Nancy, Vital Frerotte, who had just come back from Lourdes cured forever of tuberculosis, died Sunday by mistake.

 "Novels in Three Lines"

And this report is worthy of Charles Fort:


Frogs, sucked up from Belgian ponds by the storm, rained down upon the streets of the red-light district of Dunkirk.

More typical of the police beat:

The sinister prowler seen by the mechanic Gicquel near Herblay train station has been identified: Jules Menard, snail collector. 

 And a reminder of what life was like before such things as Social Security:


The corpse of a sixtyish Dorlay hung from a tree in Arcueil, with a sign reading, "Too old to work." 
They took their politics seriously in 1906:

"If my candidate loses, I will kill myself," M. Bellavoine, of Fresquienne, Seine-Inferieure, had declared. He Killed himself.

More here.And here.

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