AP: I do have something to tell you about Nabokov's usage of the term "ha-ha" there insofar as it is, as was noted by Alexey, a thinly veiled allusion to Jane Austen's Mansfield Park.
Alexey who noted this is not me, for I never mentioned Jane Austen and her novel. I spoke of Ilf and Petrov's "The Golden Calf." Btw., "calf" brings to mind Taurus (VN was Taurus; Aqua married Demon Veen and Andrey Vinelander died on April 23, VN's birthday) and "golden" reminds one of Bras d'Or (1.1), "ormolu horrors" (1.3), Ada, or Ardor. Besides, Aqua's, Marina's and Van's phrase k chertyam sobach'im (1.3, 1.24,  2.10) also occurs in "The Golden Calf:" one of the inhabitants of voron'ya slobodka ("the Crow's Nest"), former Prince Gigienishvili, suggests that the belongings of the airman (and polar explorer) Sevryugov should be thrown away, k chertyam sobach'im ("to the devil").
Alexey Sklyarenko
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