This comes from one half of my two-person best friend team, Rebekah. She’s reading A Passage to India, and found this delightful viola joke replacement – a viola quote!
This isn’t a viola joke, but it’s viola-relevant. And it comes from a good source – EM Forster.
“They had tried to reproduce their own attitude to life upon the stage, and to dress up as the middle-class English people they actually were. Next year they would do Quality Street or The Yeomen of the Guard. Save for this annual incursion, they left literature alone. The men had no time for it, the women did nothing that they could not share with the men. Their ignorance of the Arts was notable, and they lost no opportunity of proclaiming it to one another; it was the Public School attitude; flourishing more vigorously than it can yet hope to do in England. If Indians were shop, the Arts were bad form, and Ronny had repressed his mother when she enquired (must be a British thing) after his viola; a viola was almost a demerit, and certainly not the sort of instrument one mentioned in public.”
Viola jokery, we see, is not bound by culture.