Sunday, July 13, 2008

Let them eat . . . Tastykake?

Last night I met up with folks for the 14th annual Eastern State Penitentiary Bastille Day Festival. This event takes place every year in the Fairmount section of Philly in front of the old prison.

Bastille Day, the French national holiday, commemorates the storming of the Bastille (a prison in Paris), which took place on July 14, 1789 and marked the beginning of the French Revolution.

In Philly, folks dress up as peasants (and royalty) and reenact the storming of the Bastille and revolt against Marie Antoinette, who is portrayed by a local restaurant owner in the neighborhood.

After singing the French National Anthem (so kind of them to hand out the cue sheets which I still couldn't read since I don't know French) . . .

. . . and a brief back and forth between the queen and the crowd, the crowd demands bread and in response, the queen says, "Let them eat . . . . Tastykake!" The crowd was then pelted with over 2,000 Butterscotch Krimpets. I wish I had my camera on me (instead of my lame camera phone) for a shot of the tastykakes falling from the sky.

I admit, I know nothing about the French revolution except for Les Miserables. I learned more about the French Revolution last night than I ever had before. There is some character in a Tale of Two Cities named Madame Defarge who knits the names of people and seals their fate? I don't know, I only got through 40 pages of that book. Anyway, Madame Defarge is part of the festivities since the book took place during the revolution. Lisa really wanted to get a picture of her w/ us knitting. Turns out we all had our Piddleloop bags on us and were able to break out our projects for the picture. (thanks for the picture Lisa)

A great time was had by all. Can't believe I've been just down the road for five years and hadn't done this.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

I don't know, looks like Madame D dropped a stitch :)

Still reeling from the sugar high, what about you?