Bon Appétit Mini-Hunt — CLUES EXPLAINED
#1
AMUSE-BOUCHE
  • Translation: "Ladies and gentlemen, may I please have your ears? / A mini-hunt begins tomorrow—this time it's off the hook!"
  • The first letters of each line in this clue—"M" and "D" are meant to suggest the two-letter abbreviation for the state of Maryland; the prize was hidden just south of Maryland Avenue on Furness Parkway Trail.
  • «c'est décroché» ("it's off the hook") is meant to suggest the «poisson d'avril» theme of the hunt, and the many fish clues throughout (As opposed to "April Fool's Day," much of the French-speaking world celebrates "April fish"); the prize was hidden in an envelope decorated with a red herring and the words «Ceci n'est pas un poisson rouge» ("This is not a goldfish/red fish")—an homage to René Magritte's La Trahison des images (referenced in the «PLAT PRINCIPAL»).

APÉRITIF
  • Translation: "Hello treasure hunters; it's time get started! / The Twin Cities keep a secret; it must be unraveled. / Look for an ancient remnant with the mind's eye, / To find the April Fool's Day fish and claim the prize: / Free registration for the next TC Treasure Hunt— / And fifty bucks at any Blue Plate Co. restaurant!"
  • «un vestige ancien» ("an ancient remnant") is meant to suggest an old, discarded piece of carpet that covered the prize at the side of Furness Trail; it could also be taken to suggest Furness Parkway (itself a remainder of the Twin Cities' streetcar days) or the reclaimed pedestrian bridge to the south of the treasure's hiding place.
  • «l'œil de l'esprit» ("the mind's eye") is meant to suggest hunters visualize finding the treasure, which was obscured from view; it could also be taken to suggest "Pig's Eye" (Saint Paul's original moniker), or even as a reference to surrealism (of which Magritte was a proponent).
  • «le poisson d'avril» ("the April Fool's Day fish") is a reference to a French April Fool's Day tradition wherein a prankster attempts to attach a paper fish to their victim's back without being noticed, and is meant to suggest the "red herring" illustration on the prize envelope.

HORS D'ŒUVRES
  • Translation: "Go near the river?—No, never do that! / We could drown the fish by placing it there. / So don't go to a park where the water has flooded; / Just the same, you'll have to find a way to fish! / When the time comes, what you need / You'll understand; remember to follow the path!"
  • «noyer le poisson» ("drown the fish") is a French idiom akin to "duck the issue," and is meant to reinforce the «poisson d'avril» theme of the hunt.
  • «vous devrez trouver une mode de pêcher» ("you'll have to find a way to fish") is meant as a reference to the fish illustration on the prize envelope, and to reinforce the «poisson d'avril» theme of the hunt.
  • «Quand le temps viendra, ce don't vous avez besoin / Tu comprendras» ("When the time comes, what you need you'll understand") is meant to suggest that a hunter near the hiding place might catch some visual cues ("UASC," "No Motorized Vehicles," "OVEN," etc.) confirming their proximity to—and pointing at—the prize.
  • «n'oubliez pas de suivre le chemin!» ("remember to follow the path!") is meant to suggest following the unmarked Furness Trail to an area unbounded by Furness Parkway, south of Maryland Avenue.

ENTRÉE
  • Translation: "A student in letters from farmers' unions, / She was very passionate about a great composer. / She saw a need and filled it for her part / In her role as champion and patron of the arts."
  • «Une étudiante en lettres des syndicats d'agriculteurs» ("A student in letters from farmers' unions") is meant to suggest Marion Furness (the Parkway's namesake); her name anagrams to "farmers' unions." In 1882, she founded Minnesota's first performing arts organization, named for a «grand compositeur» ("great composer"): Saint Paul's Schubert Club.
  • «grand compositeur» could also be taken to suggest Haydn, and Hayden Heights.

PLAT PRINCIPAL
  • Translation: "An image of treachery, modified for the times / Did you think we'd give it away on a silver platter? / Don't be sad if off the track; you can still warm up, / Because the goldfish took refuge where it was bad to swim / He was caught, and now it's him you're hunting as MacGuffin. / Each herring, his day—cooked by oven—it was sadly his."
  • The first letter in each of the first four lines of this clue—"U," "A," "S," and "C"—are meant to suggest the UASC word mark emblazoned on two green trailers parked at the shipping facility to the southeast of the hiding place.
  • «Une image de trahison, modifiée pour le temps» ("An image of treachery, modified for the times") is meant to suggest René Magritte's surrealist painting La Trahison des images (The Treachery of Images); the prize envelope, which was designed to parody the painting, was adorned with an illustration of a red herring and the words «Ceci n'est pas un poisson rouge» ("This is not a goldfish/red fish") printed beneath it. The envelope was mounted on a «plateau d'argent» ("silver platter").
  • «Sois pas triste si hors de la piste; tu peux encore te réchauffer» ("Don't be sad if off the track; you can still warm up") is meant to suggest a furnace—and Furness Parkway Trail.
  • «cuisait par four» (cooked by oven) is meant to suggest that the prize was hidden near a large cement block tagged with the word "OVEN," on the side of Furness Trail south of Maryland Avenue.

DESSERT
  • Translation: "Where to look, do you want to know?—We left few traces. / Go to the northeast, where the treasure remains, still in its place. / Investigate to the north of a pedestrian bridge and to the south of an old line— / Don't motorize, it's not authorized—look for a sign. / To win, keep warm; you'll have to find the dish. / If you're cold, why not turn up the thermostat?"
  • The first letter in each of the first four lines of this clue—"O," "V," "E," and "N"—are meant to suggest the "OVEN" graffiti tagged on a large cement block adjacent to the hiding place.
  • «au nord-est» (to the northeast) is meant to suggest searching in Hayden Heights; Saint Paul's most north-easterly neighborhood.
  • «au nord d'un pont-piéton et au sud d'une vieille ligne» ("to the north of a pedestrian bridge and to the south of an old line") is meant to indicate a specific portion of Furness Trail, between the reclaimed steel truss that connects the trail to Hazel Street at its southern end and Maryland Avenue (Maryland is known as the "Old Line" state).
  • «Ne pas motoriser, c'est pas autorisé—recherchez une signe» ("Don't motorize, it's not authorized—look for a sign") is meant to suggest a "No Motorized Vehicles" sign found to the north of the hiding place at Maryland Avenue (as well as those further up Furness Trail).
  • «garde au chaud» ("keep warm") and «Si tu as froid, pourquoi ne pas monter le thermostat?» ("If you're cold, why not turn up the thermostat?") are meant to suggest a furnace—and Furness Parkway Trail.
  • «trouver le plat» ("find the dish") is meant to suggest the silver platter with which the prize envelope was hidden.

CAFÉ (Unpublished)
  • Translation: "Holy cow, you lost the cache?—In a pig's eye! / For this clue—number six—we'll give you the zone. / The false Magritte is in the leaves, beneath a remnant of carpet / At the bottom of the furnace, and between the waters, find it if you can! / Follow the route of the hazelnut south of Mary's land, / Just to the right of the "OVEN" box you will find a friend."
  • «Dans un œil de cochon!» ("In a pig's eye!") is meant to confirm Saint Paul, which was formerly known as Pig's Eye.
  • «Au fond du fourneau» ("At the bottom of the furnace") is meant to suggest searching the southern tip of Furness Parkway Trail.
  • «entre les eaux» ("between the waters") is meant to suggest the flooded areas on either side of Furness Trail at the hiding place.
  • «Suive la route de la noisette au sud de la terre de Marie» ("Follow the route of the hazelnut south of Mary's land") is meant to suggest searching Furness Trail along the (would-be) path of Hazel Avenue south of Maryland Avenue.
  • «Juste à droite du "OVEN" boite» ("Just to the right of the 'OVEN' box") is meant to suggest searching to the right of the large cement "OVEN" block, beneath a carpet remnant, where «tu trouveras un ami» ("you will find a friend")—the red herring on the prize envelope.
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