Chant with me, baby

First, some silly banter on Facebook that led to reminiscing about the roasted-eggplant chocolate-cream elephant-god chant

Baba ganoush ganache Ganesh! Baba ganoush ganache!

Which then plugged into the 4/3 Zippy strip I’ve been saving for an auspicious moment, in which Zippy and Zebrina order coffee together, sharing the onomatomanic chant:

double cup … sipper lid

And that then moved me to create a new Page on this blog, on my postings about chants, cheers, mantras, and onomatomania: the pleasures of repetition and the rhythmic organization of speech.

The chocauberginephantine mantra. Provided with a photo of one of my FB friends, AP, in the act of preparing chocolate ganache while displaying a big smile and a gift apron from his partner, the rest of us, naturally, bantered. There were compliments on AP’s good looks and on the design of his apron, and then this devolution of mine into word play and obscure allusion:

AZ: Ah, Ganache, the sacred food of intellectuals.

To which another of our number responded:

AO > AZ: Godly. Up there with Ambrosia (food) and Chateau d’Yquem (nectar)

Ever willing to reach for some raunch, I added a reference to AP’s studliness:

AZ > AO: Ah, but Ganache has a trunk.

And RC capped this absurd moment by recalling the roasted-eggplant chocolate-cream elephant-god chant, from a long-ago social occasion.

The chant has a slight variant of a very common metrical form: a couplet of iambic (WS) tetrameter, with a short second line (with a rest, R, in place of the final foot), as here:

From angels bending near the earth (WS WS WS WS)
To touch their harps of gold (WS WS WS R)
— “It Came Upon the Midnight Clear”

The chant has the first foot of each line reversed, with SW Baba in each:

Baba ganoush ganache Ganesh (SW WS WS WS)
Baba ganoush ganache (SW WS WS R)

The dipspread baba ganoush. From Wikipedia:

(#1) From the Tori Avey site: “classic baba ghanoush” from 6/22/11

Baba ghanoush, also spelled baba ganoush or baba ghanouj, is a Levantine [eastern Mediterranean] appetizer consisting of finely chopped roasted eggplant, olive oil, lemon juice, various seasonings, and tahini. … The eggplant is traditionally baked or broiled over an open flame before peeling, so that the pulp is soft and has a smoky taste. It is a typical meze (‘starter’) of the regional cuisine, often served as a side to a main meal and as a dip for pita bread.

The fillicing ganache. From Wikipedia:

(#2) Chocolate ganache being poured into a bowl (Wikipedia photo)

Ganache …is a glaze, icing, sauce, or filling for pastries, made from chocolate and cream.

Ganache is normally made by heating equal parts by weight of cream and chopped chocolate, warming the cream first, then pouring it over the chocolate. The mixture is then typically left to rest for a short period (between 3 and 10 minutes generally, dependent on volume) before it is stirred or blended until smooth, with liqueurs or extracts added if desired. The resting period allows the hot cream to increase the temperature of the bowl and its contents. If one were to blend immediately this would introduce air reducing the temperature and preventing the chocolate from melting consistently. Butter is generally added to give the ganache a shiny appearance and smooth texture. Adding corn syrup also gives it a shiny color and is used to sweeten the ganache without the crystallization side effect that comes from other sugars. Depending on the kind of chocolate used, for what purpose the ganache is intended, and the temperature at which it will be served, the ratio of chocolate to cream is varied to obtain the desired consistency. Typically, two parts chocolate to one part cream are used for filling cakes or as a base for making chocolate truffles, while one to one is commonly used as a glaze. … Heavy whipping cream is generally preferred, to make a creamier, thicker ganache. This pairs well with dark chocolate between 60 and 82%.

… Ganache or crème ganache was originally a kind of chocolate truffle introduced by the Paris playwright-turned-confectioner Paul Siraudin, and first documented in 1869. Siraudin named the sweet after a popular Vaudeville comedy debuted in that year by his contemporary Victorien Sardou called Les Ganaches (“The Chumps”).

The elephant-god Ganesh(a). From my 9/22/13 posting “Two stories”:

(#3) Image from James H. Bae’s minibook Ganesh: Removing the Obstacles (2009)

[in one of the stories,] a 25-foot, gemstone-encrusted statue of the elephant-headed god Ganesh, who is believed to have the power to remove obstacles.

From Wikipedia:

Ganesha…, also spelled Ganesa, also known as Ganapati and Vinayaka is a widely worshipped deity in the Hindu pantheon. His image is found throughout India and Nepal. Hindu sects worship him regardless of affiliations. Devotion to Ganesha is widely diffused and extends to Jains, Buddhists, and beyond India.

Although he is known by many attributes, Ganesha’s elephant head makes him easy to identify. Ganesha is widely revered as the remover of obstacles, the patron of arts and sciences and the deva of intellect and wisdom. As the god of beginnings, he is honoured at the start of rituals and ceremonies. Ganesha is also invoked as patron of letters and learning during writing sessions.

… The name Ganesha is a Sanskrit compound, joining the words gana (Sanskrit … gaṇa), meaning a group, multitude, or categorical system and isha (Sanskri … īśa), meaning lord or master.

… An annual festival honours Ganesha for ten days, starting on Ganesha Chaturthi, which typically falls in late August or early September. The festival begins with people bringing in clay idols of Ganesha, symbolising Ganesha’s visit. The festival culminates on the day of Ananta Chaturdashi, when idols (murtis) of Ganesha are immersed in the most convenient body of water.

Ganesh(a) is an excellent (and amiable) god for academics. Remarkably, the sexual potential of the elephant’s trunk seems not to have been exploited in popular imagery.

Zippy and Zebrina get coffee. The 4/3 Zippy strip:


Double cup sipper lid is a single line of trochaic tetrameter, with R instead of W in its 2nd and 4th feet:


One Response to “Chant with me, baby”

  1. deety Says:

    Zum golly golly golly
    Boutros Boutros-Ghali!

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