Friday, 16 October 2015

Martial 1.41: You think you're smart, Caecilius...


You think you’re smart, Caecilius. Trust me: you’re not. So what are you? A troll. A bridge-and-tunnel hawker who barters yellow sulphur matches for broken glassware — that’s what you are. The bloke who sells soggy chickpeas to the tourists — that’s what you are.

That’s you — the jumped-up snake-charmer,
That’s you — the vile spawn of the salt-vendors,
That’s you — the bawling cook who touts charred sausages round the cheap tavernas,
That’s you — a pasquinader, and second-rate at that, 
That’s you — a Cadiz whoremonger,
That’s you — the big mouth of a clapped-out poof.

So stop thinking you’re something, Caecilius: no-one else does. Reckon your jokes outperform Gabba, even Tettius Caballus? It’s not just anyone who gets to have style. The man whose ‘jokes’ are stupid smut doesn’t have sass; he’s just an ass.

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