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Monday, February 18, 2008

south american sea lion fidget maurice chevalier

For nearly two years, I wondered who in the world was Maurice Chevalier. I had seen the Marx Bros. attempt to be him so they could get on a boat in Monkey Business, but I had no idea how to spell "Chevalier." There was something funny with the sound of his name: it sounded perfect for a crooner from the Twenties/Thirties. Sappy songs, clean-cut image, the whole nine yards. I constantly quoted Chico's line from that scene ("I am Mooooreese Shavaaaaaalee-ayyyy!") and even called a fellow Marx Bros. fan that name.

Well, as easy as it could have been to look up the Monkey Business page on Wikipedia, I didn't. Maybe I did once, but didn't see the name listed on there. I don't know. Anyway, I wondered if I'd ever get an answer. Luckily, my answer came over the weekend as Stevie posted the subject line from a spam e-mail she received: "south american sea lion fidget maurice chevalier." Jackpot!

Chevalier sounded Italian (a language I do not know very well), but it's French (another language I do not know very well). So, I wouldn't have guessed the "valier" spelling. I would have guessed "Chevallia" or "Chevaligia." Putting those guesses in a Google search would have not resulted in helpful results.

Maybe those spam e-mails about Viagra and mortgage loans do have some sort of purpose in life.

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