To read last month’s full case quiz. Visit – The Walk of Fame Continues!
Dear Elaine and Shana Lewis,
the Constitutional Remedies for Basil and Sybil Fawlty are:
Lycopodium for Basil and Calacarea Carbonica for Sybil.
Dr. Anastasia Kimtsou.
You know, that made a lot of sense to me, and was what I believed also, and then I read Maria’s email:
Hi Elaine and Shana! May I say that I crack up every time you and Shana have a disagreement over, usually, James Taylor!
About the quiz: Oh boy!!! That is really a hard guess!
For the wife I have ABSOLUTELY no idea!
For the husband I also found it very difficult, but I could maybe vote for Lachesis.
Hmm…that is intriguing, really. Lachesis is the venom of the bushmaster snake.
Just because for the mocking, the ridiculous monkey gestures, the suspicion. Could it be Hyoscyamus too, maybe?
No, Hyoscyamus is literally insane. Basil is not insane, but he’s…what? That is the question! And just like with the Homer Simpson Quiz, we have to make a list of the elements of the case, then try to find rubrics (headings in The Repertory) for them, if possible.
Let’s think about Sybil. Sybil is…what?
And what about Basil…Basil is…
I’m sure there might be more, so, feel free to come up with your own ideas.
It is the most difficult quiz ever, I think!
I did not know that!
So, only with your precious help I could reach to a decent vote 😛
Have I been helpful?
Yes you have been very helpful!
I will stick with Lachesis for the husband and I will vote for Calc-carb (made from the oyster shell) for the wife, mostly because she has a giant hotel (“home”), like a big oyster shell, for a giant family of customers. She takes care of people. I can’t think for a better vote than that. But if I am wrong I will try again 🙂
No; in fact, very good, Maria! Sybil was a tough one, that is why I wrote an article about Calc-carb in this issue (July 2014) because I knew that without it, no one would be likely to guess Sybil’s remedy. Did you see the hint I gave from Philip Bailey’s book?
“The image of the matronly inn-keeper’s wife, extending hospitality to all, keen to gossip and not above bawdy fun….If they trust you, they are likely to be chatty and pally… Unlike Natrum, Calc usually feels worthy of love and happiness and is able to receive as well as give. Family life comes naturally.”
Now doesn’t that sound like Sybil?
But Basil! I was so sure Basil was Lycopodium! “Everyone’s going to know Basil,” I thought, “but they won’t know Sybil.” But then after seeing your vote for Lachesis, I started thinking… and thinking…and now I am SOLD on Lachesis!
I know why almost everyone voted for Lycopodium. It’s because of the famous Lycopodium rubric, “Mind: contemptuous, hard, for subordinates, and agreeable–pleasant–to superiors”, but guess what? Here’s something you probably didn’t know…. Lachesis is in that rubric too!!!! And here is the line Sybil shouts at Basil that I’m sure made everyone think the remedy was Lycopodium:
“I have had it up to here with you! You never get it right, do you!? You’re either crawling all over them, licking their boots; or spitting poison at them like some benzedrine puff adder!”
But it’s her last words we need to take heed of! Puff adder? Spitting poison at them? She’s describing a snake! Lachesis is a snake! And in truth, Mr. Johnson is probably Lachesis too; hence the two of them butting heads! You can see that Mr. Johnson is a non-repressed Lachesis, clearly a lady’s man, who has definitely charmed Sybil and gotten Basil’s back up! In fact, you could conceivably call this episode of Fawlty Towers, “The Lachesis Episode” because everything about it revolves around sex (and drinking too, I might add; you may recall Mr. Johnson ordering a bottle of champagne; and in case you didn’t know, Lachesis people are quite likely to have a drinking problem). Lachesis is in BOLD under “Sexuality, lasciviousness, lustful”, while Lycopodium is there only as a 1 (in plain type).
The episode begins with Mr. Johnson, shirt open as per the 1970’s, joking with Sybil at the front desk. Basil chimes in with numerous cutting remarks and unflattering mocking gestures, when suddenly, in walks the doctor! Immediately Basil changes his tune, “I’m sorry, we hadn’t been told, that you were a doctor! How do you do?” But later in the dining room, Basil finds out that the doctor is actually a psychiatrist! He becomes frantically paranoid! To Sybil he whispers, “Just keep your distance, OK?! You know what they’re all obsessed with, don’t you? Sex! You know what they say it’s all about, don’t you? Sex!”
From then on, paranoia reigns (Lachesis is a 4 under “Paranoid”, Lycopodium’s not even there!) and Basil orders everyone not to speak to the psychiatrist! He proceeds to misconstrue everything the psychiatrist says and answers inappropriately and then tries to walk back his answer when he realizes he’s said the wrong thing:
“Hello! You know, we we were at cross-purposes just now; there you were talking about sex, I thought you were talking about walks. Holidays!!! Holidays!!! Sex! Ha-ha! No, my wife and I have one about twice a year, I mean a holiday, holiday; whereas, as far as a good walk goes, well, we have a jolly-good walk around 2 or 3 times a week!”
Basil then turns his attention to his Lachesis rival, Mr. Johnson, who has sneaked a girl into his room, and determines that he will flush the two of them out if it’s the last thing he does! (You know the Lachesis snake will chase you down if you get in his territory and Basil is doing just that, pursuing Mr. Johnson relentlessly.) I think he was probably jealous that Mr. J had a girl in his room (and we know that Lachesis is a 4 under “Jealousy”, n’est-ce-pas?); plus, in the middle of all this, a blonde female guest from Australia checks into the hotel, and Basil can’t take his eyes off her and follows her to her room at the same time that he is hell-bent on exposing the fact that Mr. Johnson has a girl in his room!
So you can see that the theme of this episode is sex, an “animal” theme if ever there was one, not a “plant” theme or a “mineral” theme, I’m afraid; and it’s all coming together under Lachesis. What have we got here? Lasciviousness, jealousy, vindictiveness, sarcasm, alcohol, paranoia, suspicion and mocking…. with all arrows pointing at Lachesis! Way ta go, Maria! You solved the case!
Let’s thank everyone who voted:
Dr. Anastasia Kimtsou
Career Day Contest winner, Vamsi Sudha
and of course, Maria! Dr. B, what do we have for Maria?
For Maria we have, “Maria”, from “Westside Story”:
The most beautiful sound I ever heard…Maria, Maria, Maria, Maria…
Maria, I just met a girl named Maria, and suddenly that name, will never be the same to meeeeeeeeeeeee…..
Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.
Elaine takes online cases! Write to her at [email protected]
Visit her website: elaineLewis.hpathy.com