mercredi, mai 17, 2006

Nice Try

Over Easter vacation, Handsome and I went on a road trip through Brittany.

Our first stop was the Paimpont Forest, where it is claimed the magician Merlin, of King Arthur fame, is buried. Handsome had warned me it was a little anti-climactic as far as monuments go. Indicated only by a tiny hand-written sign, and an illegible semi-official marker, it is - at best - underwhelming.

At first, I was almost willing to make the leap. These sort of things you want to believe, for whatever reason. You read the marker, you see the other tourists, you try to wrap your head around why on earth the Anglo-Saxon magician soothsayer of Arthurian legend would be buried in Brittany.

You take a closer look at the marker, and then you notice the quotation marks: "Merlin's Tomb."

And then it hits you. Arthurian legend.

Well, hey, you gotta work with what you've got, right? So, you have some large Druid-like stones laying around. You're in a forest, on the axis coming from Paris, and forests make you think of King Arthur and Robin Hood and whatnot. You need some extra dough. You take three rocks, stack them up, spread the word, and bingo! Instant tourist attraction.

I leave it to you to decide if they did a convincing job.

I know what you're thinking. Merlin was Jewish? Those little pieces of paper are so Wailing Wall.

But really, guys, nice try.

Baaa Waaaa!

I was listening to the radio the other morning and nearly choked on my coffee when I heard the headlines.

A mountainous region in France has voted to re-introduce bears into the wild. This, like, well, everything involving change, sparked a protest. The announcer gave details of the crowd, mostly composed of local farmers. Without a hint of irony he added, "a few hundred sheep were also in attendance."

Farm animals on strike.

Only in France, kids, only in France.