Superman never made any money for saving the world from Solomon Grundy

Monday, July 24, 2017


So, way back in the primordial days of blogging, my now-friend and once-editor Richard Bensam was known to me only as RAB, the fellow who ran an interesting site:

The content was great fun, a mix of comics, pop culture, politics, movies, and quotidian tidbits. Now you can find some writings on Richard's Google+ account, and link farms on his newer blog, Avedon's Sideshow, but like most of us primeval bloggers, he has moved onto other things. (That's the actual most-recent post in the screenshot.)

As much as I loved that early content, that's not what I wanted to talk about today. I want to talk about the title: Estoreal. As it says on the tin, it's a made-up word that seems like it ought to mean something. Really, I checked the first time I saw it, just to make sure, because it feels so much like a genuine, bona fide word. It rolls off the tongue so easily and so familiarly that one is almost tempted to try to bluff one's way though and pretend to know the meaning. It is so captivating a word that it took me a while to realize that as a title it might be a modest meta-commentary on the blog entries themselves. A perfect blog title if I ever read one.

I was put in mind of Estoreal recently, when, on a quick trip across the border to the beachfront tourist town of White Rock, British Columbia, I came across this sign:

Besoreal! Oh, what a delightful counterpoint! Synonym? Antonym? Cousin? Who knows, but it tickles the ear just as satisfyingly. What a wonderful serendipity.

Not to bring us too much down to Earth, but, inspired by this reawakening of memory, I did play with these in Google Translate. If you cut the words in two just before the "real" and call them Spanish, esto real is rendered as this is real, but beso real returns royal kiss.

If the words have to mean something, those are pretty good choices (and Estoreal is still a great blog title). Me, I'll just hold onto them as half-heard scraps of some language that I think I know, but really don't.


Richard said...

Avedon's Sideshow isn't me -- that's my old friend Avedon Carol. I handled the initial blog setup and layout for her and never rescinded my co-ownership in case she needed me to adjust something further down the line. Since that may yet be the case, I'm still listed there but have never provided any content other than occasionally turning up in the comments sections. (Since her political views and mine are nearly identical, I don't usually have much to add.)

Richard said...

Funny thing about the title Estoreal...the fact is, when I decided I was going to take the plunge and start a proper blog, I was stumped for a title and did what I always do whenever I'm stuck for an idea: I went for an evening walk in lower Manhattan. At some point during the walk, the word "estoreal" just popped into my head out of nowhere. I don't know that I ever saw or heard it anywhere before, perhaps misreading or mishearing a snatch of Nuyorican; it just showed up unbidden and I knew immediately that was it. The word has no other meaning to me than the vague hint of suggestiveness that you describe in such flattering terms....but I gotta admit, I still like it as much as you do. Thank you for the kind words, man!

Walaka of Earth 2 said...

I'm glad you're pleased!

Thanks for the clarification - I made a quick edit.