Friday, September 28, 2007

Giraffes on Horseback Salads

I was reading this evening, and came across a news story online that outlined some of the strangest requests received by hotel concierges.

By far the strangest request ever received was by the concierge at Le Meurice, a famous, very exclusive, hotel in Paris. Salvador Dali, famed surreal artist, was a regular guest at Le Meurice; in fact, he stayed at the hotel, on average, about one month each year. His regular companions? His two tamed ocelots!

Dali made a number of odd requests of the Meurice hotel staff: for the staff to go out to the garden and capture flies for him; he requested the concierge find him a horse; and most bizarre-he requested a flock of sheep be brought to his room, so that he could shoot them with his pistol (loaded with blanks, of course).

I read that, and, I have to admit, my curiosity was piqued. So I dug around a bit on the net, researched Dali a bit, and found that he was not only a painter; he also wrote!

I was, understandably, excited! Apparently, in the 1930's, Dali met the Marx brothers, befriended them, and wrote a script for a Marx Brothers movie. MGM Studios (the Marx Brothers had an exclusive contract with MGM) declined
to make the movie, citing it as being "too surreal"; hard to believe coming from Dali!

So, I poked around a bit more, and found excerpts from the script. Go, read it; and I'll leave you with a few of the more notable excerpts here.

Can you, honestly, blame MGM?

From "Giraffes on Horseback Salads", by Salvador Dali:

While love tears at Jimmy's heart, Groucho tries to crack a nut on the bald head of the dwarf in front of him... Although the guests show surprise, they try for a time to continue their meal, which is, however, brought to an end by showers of rain. In a panic, the guests rush in all directions, while from the hall a torrent of waters washes in, bringing with it all sorts of debris, including a drowned ox. A shepherd makes a desperate effort to collect his flock of sheep, which climb up on the sofas and the bed in an effort to avoid being carried away by the water... Meanwhile, the Marx Brothers announce that a great fĂȘte is going to take place. For this, large preparations have to be made. Four acres of desert are cleared of cacti and of all vegatation and flattened out like a tennis court... There is a competition for the person who can ride a bicycle the slowest with a stone balanced on his head. All the participants have to grow beards. .. Before the spectacle begins, the vegetation around the fields is set alight. This prevents the spectators in the stands from seeing anything at all.

1 comment:

SheGazelle said...

Mr. Dali's writing is about as interesting to me as his works that I've observed at various art auctions- which is not at all.
But you have made me wonder if some of my favorite artists have other creative interests such as writing...