Sunday, November 6, 2011
Last night I celebrated my first legitimate 5th of November, or Guy Fawkes night, or Bonfire Night. I also finally understand what the night is about, besides knowing the opening to the rhyme, “Remember, remember the 5th of November, Gunpowder, treason and plot.”
And, thanks to Wikipedia, it’s time to have a little history lesson:
In 1605, Guy Fawkes was arrested guarding a big ol’ pile of explosives. Known as the Gunpowder Plot, Guy Fawkes and his Catholic buddies were trying to assassinate King James I, a Protestant. When Fawkes was caught, everyone celebrated with bonfires. And the still celebrate with bonfires today. And fireworks.
We chose to celebrate the Gunpowder Plot’s demise with Porto at the famous Gordon’s Wine Bar. According to their website, Gordon’s is the oldest wine bar in London (est. 1890). You feel like you’re drinking in an air raid shelter, but the whole effect with the candles and ancient newspaper clippings of the royal family is very cozy and charming. My photographic skills left much to be desired, but perhaps they’ll give some idea of the ambiance.
Thanks, Guy Fawkes for giving me the opportunity to experience another wonder of London. Since this celebration was so successful, I’ve decided we in the States should adapt the idea of the holiday. Here’s a couple failed assassination attempts on U.S. Presidents to get us started:
- 30 Jan 1835: Andrew Jackson
- 13 Oct 1912: Teddy Roosevelt
- 15 Feb 1933: FDR
- 1 Nov 1950: Harry Truman
- 12 Sept 1994: Bill Clinton
I have even take this opportunity to compose my very own poem about Theodore Roosevelt:
“Quiet, I’ve been shot!”
The Bull Moose Party Plot.
As strong as an ox
(a Bull Moose to be true),
Ol’ Teddy could not be brought down by you.
If it’s all the same,
let the bullet remain,
And we’ll tell that base Schrank, “Adieu!”