Monday, October 8, 2007

Happy "Columbus" Day

Was there ever a fictional character more terrifying than Christopher Columbus? Rumor has it that this invented explorer crossed oceans to arrive in the Americas just in time for Indigenous People’s Day and immediately hatched his evil domination plan by shaking the hands of the Native Americans and infecting them with all sorts of Italian pirate diseases, like scurvy and pancetta. Today, we celebrate him with parades and clowns, and people dress up like Captain Hook from Peter Pan, because after Columbus spread disease in the “new world”, his hands fell off and it was this legend that gave two brothers named Johnson and Johnson the idea for antibacterial hand soap. Nowadays, kids celebrate the fact that they have hands by tracing them in school to make turkeys, which they offer up to Columbus so that his ghost doesn’t visit them in the night.
Wait…I’ve just been told that Columbus was a real Italian person. But how could he have sailed three different ships around the world in 80 days? Hmmm. Then it does make more sense that there have been protests across the country this week as the nation tries to celebrate a holiday that leaves many of its citizens feeling less than patriotic.

1 comment:

ellie said...

Man, I had a nasty case of pancetta last spring. Luckily, my prescription sangiovese cleared it right up.

As the only honorary Canadian reader of the blog (that I know of) I feel called upon to point out that yesterday was also Canadian Thanksgiving. It is eerily like American Thanksgiving but earlier and on a Monday. It was pioneered by a very grateful explorer named Martin Frobisher, apparently, and they started celebrating Thanksgiving in Canada 43 years before those slacker pilgrims even landed at Plymouth Rock.

And, while I'm not on the subject, hockey season has started. It's a good time to be an honorary Canadian.
(Note to readers in US: When I say "hockey" above I am referring to what Americans often call "ice hockey" but if I were to say that I might lose my honorary status)