Only one item this week. I saw more weird stuff than this, but this one stands alone. In fact, it just might give me cause to stop running this feature. I was literally rendered speechless by this. I know, other cultures and all that, but…huh?!
What am I talking about? Well, via PZ Myers, I’ve now learned that in Catalonia, an old Christmas tradition involves statuettes of famous people defecating. You get one of these statues and you hide it in your neighbor’s Nativity scene for them to find, because it symbolizes fertilization and prosperity for the coming year.
I can’t decide what I think about this. I’m leaning toward thinking it’s possibly the funniest tradition I’ve ever heard of. The sheer irreverence of it, and apparently they’ve been doing this for two hundred plus years. Wow.
As I understand it, the deficating charactor is traditionally placed in the Nativity scene off to the side, behind a bush, with his back to the main action. The joke is that there is always someone who misses something important because he had something stupid and mundane to do– and this particular hapless bastard is missing the birth of Christ because he snuck off to take a crap. It is frequently cited as an example of the Catalan sense of humor, and it is pretty funny. There is a name for the character, but I can’t put my hands on the book where I read about it just now. I’ve always kind of wanted one.
How come other countries have all the fun traditions?
Here’s a piece of a post that impressed me a lot recently…
“New Orleans is a canary in a coal mine for our nation. Its song is trying to fade.” Check out Black Owl and let me know what ya think. He speaks much of spiritual matters, but also politics, comics, and a few other ventures.