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Written by Julia Wolf
A ballet dancer’s life
Watching how Tsukiko bends and stretches, Mme. Padva can’t help but admiring how graceful the contortionist is. As Tsukiko “ pulls a leg up impossibly far over her head ”, Tara asks Mme. Padva whether she could do such things when she was a dancer. The former ballerina answered her that if she could she “ would have had a much busier social calendar ”. The irony of her phrase indicates that many people used to come to a ballet to admire beautiful bodies of dancers and even to find a mistress.
Women of many talents
The Burgess sisters enjoy attention and communication. They “ offer advice on subjects ranging from relationships and finance to travel and shoes ”. The irony of it is that the Burgess sisters could hardly be competent enough to do that. They can’t concentrate on one thing, so they do a little bit of everything. They used to be actresses, dancers and even librarians, but didn’t achieve professional success in any of aforementioned spheres.
A circus girl
When Celia addresses Mme. Padva as “ Madame ”, the whole gathering seems to be torn between shock and amusement. Mme. Padva or just Tante Padva jokes that Celia is “ so proper for a circus girl ”. The irony is of her phrase is based on a common stereotype that circus girls lack manners and don’t know how to behave properly in the top notch of society .
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