NABOKV-L post 0005880, Sat, 31 Mar 2001 10:35:17 -0800

There's "Glory" in your smile. Toothpaste in VN

From: Grigori Utgof <> well as the German toothpaste brand in "Korol', dama, valet":
"Chisti zuby nashei pastoi, ulybat'sia budesh' chasto" (Nabokov V.
Korol', dama, valet // Nabokov V. Sobr. soch. russkogo perioda. V 5-i
SPb.: Simpozium, 2000. T. 3. S. 260).

EDITOR's Translation: The Russian advertising rhyme (presumably a
translation from German) is, roughly "If you use our toothpaste, you
will smile often"

On Thu, 29 Mar 2001, D. Barton Johnson wrote:

> ------------------
> Beginning at the next to last line of page 7 of the Vintage
> paperback edition of Nabokov's _Glory_ starts 2 sentences
> (mostly carried over to page 8) that read, "We could not
> improve the [tooth]paste, so we improved the tube. Indeed
> the aperture formed a transverse slit, so that the paste,
> as it squeezed out, slid out onto the brush ... like a
> ribbon."
> At first impression this would seem more like one of the ads
> in _Lolita_, which have been commented on by Appel in his
> _Nabokov's Dark Cinema_ rather than the quite Russian
> _Glory_ (see the entry in Appel's index on ads as literary
> material, under the heading popular culture).
> The difficulty with rereading Nabokov, as I was doing here,
> is that one finds obvious things that one has missed before.
> I immediately recalled the last line of e e cummings' poem
> "POEM, OR BEAUTY HURTS MR VINAL" (caps by Mr cummings!)
> which satirizes American ads and slogans:
> "comes out like a ribbon lies flat on the brush"
> published by 1926. I find no mention of this Mr cummings in
> Boyd or elsewhere handy. Comments permitted, thanks.
> John
> ---------------------------
> EDITOR's COMMENT. We all know the Nabokovs home soap was "Pears" but
> what was their English toothpaste brand? A challenge for all web search
> wizards!