Sue Burke (mount_oregano) wrote,
Sue Burke
mount_oregano

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Innocent fun with paper dolls

Today, December 28, is Innocents Day in Spain and some other Spanish-speaking countries. It's the union of the pagan Crazy Day for practical jokes with the Day of the Holy Innocents, which was the slaughter of children by King Herod to try to get Baby Jesus. The Three Magi had laughed at Herod for his ignorance, the legend goes -- although legends seem to appear where they are needed.

Common jokes include substituting salt for sugar in the sugar bowl, gluing a coin to the sidewalk, resetting someone's clock, painting their face while they sleep, or placing fake dog doo in a refrigerator. Strikingly realistic dog doo is always a big seller at the Madrid Christmas Market in the Main Square.

But, since the Middle Ages, the best practical joke is to stick a doll on someone's back, formerly made of rags, these days of paper. It's called a monigote and signifies that the wearer is an easily manipulated fool. Last year someone put a doll on a major government spokesman while he was making a speech. One of the free local newspapers comes with a paper doll in today's edition.

So watch your back.
Tags: spanish
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