Monday, December 04, 2006

Saint Nicholas Eve and Zwarte Piet

If you were brought up Christian in the U.S., there's a chance that you've already broken out the stockings and secured them to the fireplace since St. Nick's Day is December 6. Not everyone I know did this even at a Catholic school, but if you're not familiar, it's pretty much Santa's official feast day and you get treats in your stocking then. Sort of a Christmas appetizer, if you will.

If you're Dutch, there's a chance you've broken out your shoes and, uh, blackface makeup. Tradition in the Netherlands and Flanders has it that Santa didn't deliver the gifts down the chimney; his black slave, Zwarte Piet (Black Pete), did. If your ass hasn't clenched yet, read for yourself. Rightfully a controversial issue every year there, the Wikipedia article is slap to the forehead amusing because the attempted "remedying" of Black Pete digs itself into a deeper and deeper hole. Slave or servant, sooty or clean face aside, the picture is enough for me.

Categories: Links/Miscellaneous, Politics

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