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#4447916 - 11/10/18 03:20 PM What was "Zigomar"?  
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If you ever fly French in WOFF, you may have seen a loading screen photo of a Nieuport with the name “Zigomar” on the fuselage. The plane was flown by Paul Albert Pierre Tarascon (8 December 1882 – 11 June 1977). He lost a foot in an accident while learning to fly, volunteered for duty when the Great War began, was credited with 11 confirmed kills, and became known as “l'as la jambe de bois” (the ace with the wooden leg). He survived the war, fought with the French Resistance in WWII, and died in 1977.

He named his planes “Zigomar,” followed by a number as the war progressed and he flew newer mounts. But what was “Zigomar”? Ever wonder?

Zigomar was a character in a series of novels by the French author Leon Sazie. Film Director Victorin Jasset (1862-1913), who created the Nick Carter series, made several of Sazie’s books into (silent) films. The character Zigomar was an international master criminal, who, in the movie, is chased across Europe by a master detective, Paulin Broquet. The movie was a big hit in 1911, and Jasset followed it with several sequels. Somewhat unusual for the time, Jasset liked to shoot on site, and not in a studio. In the film viewers got to see a few of Europe’s famous locations. Maybe it’s me, but the whole thing—a master criminal being chased by a great detective across Europe sounds a lot like “Murder on the Orient Express”! But I’ll leave that determination to others.

One can assume that Tarascon was a fan of either the book, or the movie, or both, hence the name on his plane. In the books, and there were several, Sazie could not allow Zigomar to be captured, or there would be no possibility for another in the series. Perhaps that was Tarascon’s thinking in choosing the name—always chased but never captured (or shot down). Who can say.

Attached Files zigomar.jpgZiggy4.jpg

Nowi
#4447920 - 11/10/18 04:02 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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Nowi, the term is also French slang for the male sex organ, so there's that too. winkngrin

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#4447924 - 11/10/18 04:21 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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Really?


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#4447925 - 11/10/18 04:24 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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Yes, really. Another tidbit about Tarascon's livery is that his original rooster emblem, as seen in your posted screenshot, was later adopted as the insignia of Esc. 62.

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#4447931 - 11/10/18 05:28 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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#4447944 - 11/10/18 06:00 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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#4447949 - 11/10/18 06:10 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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Tarascon also trained Charles Nungessor!


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#4447957 - 11/10/18 07:52 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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It's interesting that while Tarascon learned to fly in 1911 he did not actually receive his FAI certificate until December of 1914. This may have been due to him losing his foot in the accident while at flight school, as you mentioned earlier Nowi. I can see how such a thing may have put him off flying, but when war broke out he felt it his duty to volunteer his services as a pilot.

Attached Files Paul_Tarascon_FAI_1841.jpg
#4447992 - 11/10/18 11:26 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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If Bader could fly with two artificial legs, I guess one foot missing wasn’t all that difficult. But, of course, he didn’t have to fight at all. And then he did it again with the Resistance. I wonder if there are any French interviews out there?


Nowi
#4450676 - 11/27/18 12:03 AM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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Paul Tarascon was most famous french ace guynemer's instructor.

French air force still honour Guynemer on his death day, every year, on every air base. Well Tarascon was kicking his butt smile

He mentions their relation at 27:10 in this archive:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=AaqMEHxhVvk

Zigomar is not the usual slang for penis, I never read or heard it used, despite what wiki says.

The most usual meaning for zigomar is "guy", and I always read it associated with "strange".

"un drôle de zigomar", a strange guy.

#4450753 - 11/27/18 04:37 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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rollnloop, I would not begin to debate you Sir about the slang use of the word, seeing as how French is your native tongue. And I was not actually aware Wiki noted the usage. My comment came from a personal experience while overseas in the 1970s with the US Air Force when, at one point, I was working with members of the French Air Force during a joint training operation. One of our flight sergeants, in front of our French cohorts, chewed out one of our airman for some minor infraction, (don't even recall what it was at the moment). One of the French airmen used your phrase after our sergeant walked away and we asked what it meant. The fellow was not very fluent in English, but he did his best to try and explain to us his meaning. As none of us were very fluent in French, what we were getting from his explanation was that "zigomar" meant "dick", as in someone who was just plain nasty or mean. Our French friend was not familiar with our term so one of our party went on to say, "You know, prick, knob." The fellow still looked puzzled, so our man lowered his hand down by his crotch and made an appropriate gesture with his finger and stated, "You know - penis!" The French airman suddenly laughed and shook his head, but must have decided he'd had it with the stilted communication and that we were close enough, and agreed with, "oui - yes - penis - dick". From that point on we were using "zigomar" in that context. My apologies for my part as yet another American butchering your most beautiful language.

#4450801 - 11/27/18 08:49 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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Well, it's a stretch but still right in the end, so you're not exactly butchering. I was just noting that the word is far from being widely used nowadays and that you may meet misunderstanding using it to mean dick, while we have so many other slang variations, (zizi, braquemard, bite, teub, popaul, chibre, vit, biroute , only to name the most familiars).

You can find a wider list typing "penis thesaurus francais" in google , to impress your french guests cheers kneeldown

Last edited by rollnloop.; 11/27/18 09:53 PM.
#4450810 - 11/27/18 10:20 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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I guess we can only wonder why Tarascon chose the name. I guess I prefer “I’m Zigomar, the man you cannot catch,” to “I’m Zigomar, the prick.”

Maybe somewhere out there is the transcript of an interview with the guy. He lives until 1977.

I did find this, although its hardly authoritative.

"The plane wears the markings of the Nieuport 24bis flown by French ace Paul Tarascon. After a plane crash in 1911, Tarascon's foot was amputated. But at the outbreak of war, he volunteered to fly and was known as l'as la jambe de bois (the ace with a wooden leg).

The name of Tarascon's plane, Zigomar, comes from a group of movie serials popular before the war."

http://www.museumofflight.org/aircraft/nieuport-bis-24-reproduction

Last edited by Nowi; 11/27/18 10:23 PM.

Nowi
#4450827 - 11/28/18 12:13 AM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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"to impress your french guests" - That one made me laugh out loud.

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#4450856 - 11/28/18 08:04 AM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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Originally Posted by Nowi
I guess we can only wonder why Tarascon chose the name. I guess I prefer “I’m Zigomar, the man you cannot catch,” to “I’m Zigomar, the prick.”


Well, we are talking about warfare and young men at war, not elderly folks playing whist. I can see your reasoning as the former has much more style and seems more 'French' in terms of elan and esprit but don;t discount the latter as a challenge and an insult that is aimed at enraging his enemies.


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#4450878 - 11/28/18 01:16 PM Re: What was "Zigomar"? [Re: Nowi]  
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Kina reminds me of Udet's cocky "Du doch nicht!" Ernst, I got bad news for you: If an enemy pilot can read what's written on your tail, he's probably about to put some bullets in you.


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