Beelzebub's Tales to His Grandson




29 The Fruits of Former Civilizations and the Blossoms of the Contemporary


“As examples of the very many particularly maleficent inventions of those German beings, let us take just those five what are called ‘chemical substances,’ now existing there under the names of (1) satkaine, (2) aniline, (3) cocaine, (4) atropine and (5) alisarine, which chemical substances are used there at the present time by the beings of all the continents and islands as our dear Mullah Nassr Eddin says: ‘Even-without-any-economizing.’


“‘Alisarine,’ the fifth and last of the enumerated inventions, is also widespread everywhere.


“The confectioners and other professionals there who prepare the said tasty articles for the first food of the rest of your favorites use this same German ‘sure-fire’ composition, alisarine, of course unconsciously, for that purpose which has there already finally become the ideal for the whole of the contemporary civilization, which purpose is expressed in the language of our honored Mullah Nassr Eddin in the following words: As-long-as-everything-looks-fine-and-dandy-to-me-what-does-it-matter-if-the-grass-doesn’t-grow.’


42 Beelzebub in America


“Only after a while, when you have finally managed to take in various details of the appearance of these displays and somehow start reflecting again, can you clearly constate how much greater is the variety of color and shape of the jars in these American displays of fruit preserves than in the mentioned displays of the continent of Europe; and this is evidently due to the fact that, in the common psyche of the beings of this new group, the combination resulting from the intermixture of former independent races happens to correspond more completely to a better perception and a thorough cognition of the sense and beneficence of the achievements of the Reason both of the beings of the contemporary community of Germany in respect of the chemical substances they have invented, called there ‘aniline’ and ‘alisarine,’ as well as of the beings of the community France in respect of ‘perfumery.’