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Remember remember the fifth of November……

I remember, which is atypical for a Yankee. Thems in The States generally don’t know what Guy Fawkes Day is, let alone celebrate it. For Spo-fans ignorant of the holiday, on this day in 1605 a cabal of English Catholics decided to blow up King James and Parliament in order to return Catholicism to the land. It didn’t work. After someone tipped off a Parliament member not to go to work today, authorities searched the place and found a Mr. Guy Fawkes* in the basement with three dozen barrels of gunpowder. Mr. Fawkes was executed and the government proclaimed all should light bonfires on this day in celebration. Since then, Guy Fawkes Day, or Bonfire Night as it is sometimes called, still happens on 5 November – or so I presume.. I don’t know if still happens. Spo-fans on the other side of the pond please clarify if a) I have the history right and b) what goes on these days.

It seems unbelievable people could rent a room under Parliament for any reason let alone for storing barrels of gunpowder. Mr. Fawkes and chums were severely punished for their shenanigans. It makes me think on the miscreants on 6 January. I don’t see that day being turned into a similar holiday of bonfires and celebration of a failure to harm the government. Indeed, I am told to ‘forget about it’ and ‘move on’ rather and pretend it didn’t happen.

Urs Truly heard about ‘setting fire to some public building’ as a therapeutic exercise on BBC radio. Although this advice was done in a Monty Python comedy sketch, I took it to heart as a serious solution. The Board of Directors Here at Spo-Reflections makes me always go on record here to proclaim I have never done so and probably never will (worse luck!). This is a funny worry of theirs, as the dears regularly set fires and burn down buildings (government-types or otherwise). In contrast to Guy Fawkes et. al., there is no political motive to their incendiary shenanigans. They simply love a good fire and a marvelous party, which I think is what ‘Bonfire Night’ is all about. I see in photos Mr. Guy Fawkes is burned in effigy on this night, although he didn’t die that way.** I’ve also seen photos of townsfolk burning the villain de jour rather than Mr. Fawkes. I suppose the burning in effigy of current politicians isn’t done anymore as someone would take umbrage and whoever lit the fire would be arrested as a terrorist. Again, others with firsthand experience can tell me how “PC” is Bonfire Night. Maybe it is just bonfires and potatoes and bottles of John Smiths. Quaint but doesn’t sound as fun.

I won’t be lighting any fires this evening, other than under my backside to get cracking at putting the house in shape and the luggage together for the departure to Palm Springs tomorrow. We leave at ‘civilized times’ as my late Uncle Richard would say viz. not getting up at 4AM to get to the airport, that sort of thing. I will have some time Saturday morning to finish things, provided I didn’t blow up La Casa de Spo Friday evening as is mighty tempting-sounding to do.

This is not an accurate photo; Big Ben did not exist at the time of The Gunpowder Plot. Please don’t write in.

*He was renting the room under the name John Johnson. Worse. Alias. Ever.

**He was hanged and torn apart A.K.A. as ‘drawn and quartered’ I forget in which order. This would be a good Wednesday Ws would it not? Who should be hanged, drawn, and quartered.

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November 2021

Spo-Reflections 2006-2018