Puddle Jumpers

Enjoying life, off the hamster wheel

Guy Fawkes, 2008

Guy Fawkes burning, 2008

Last weekend we found ourselves once again surrounded by a happy bunch of nuts, and burned an effigy of Guy Fawkes, the 17th Century British terrorist who was eventually, hung, drawn, quartered and burned at the stake for trying to blow up parliament. Yeeeuck! Hellova way ta go! Our friends Andy and Cathy have been “celebrating” Guy Fawkes night for a few years, and last year was our first exposure to it. It was so fun, we eagerly anticipated this year’s festivities all year long. I made the head again this year, and we upped the ante a little with a stick body Neil made out of wood. It even had feet!

Anyway, 500 years after Guy’s dastardly attempt to smuggle loads of gun powder into the British House of Commons, under his coat while carrying a torch or something, we’re standing in our friend’s back yard in deepest, darkest Maple Ridge, watching Andy toss gas at the bonfire, while the Guy sits perched on a little makeshift seat, wearing a huge cowboy hat that looks more like a sombrero, going up in flame. The Guy has been stuffed with newspaper and hay, and two fireworks have been shoved into his empty head. When they finally go off, one makes a really lame “pop” while the other shoots out of the Guy’s head and lands in the neighbour’s yard where, after a pause, explodes with a huge “BANG!” Then the drunken Brits, Andy and a buddy, drag out some HUGE fireworks and “bear sticks”, which are like firecrackers that sound like bombs exploding, and set those off from a bucket filled with sand.

It was all incredibly bizarre and very testosterone laden, but fun, too, in that red-neck, backwoods kind of way! The whole scene was surreal, with much laughter and antics all ’round. Meanwhile, everything burned but the Guy’s shoes, which took forever. Nike sure knows how to make them there shoes. One leg fell off with a shoe still attached and continued burning on the grass until someone pushed it back into the fire.

Brits have this reputation of being all stuffy and stiff upper lip and ‘what’, but seriously, they make the Vikings look like SISSIES by comparison. Burning huge bonfires is one thing, but burning effigies in bonfires is wholly another! It’s borderline psychopathic… and fun.

So, for your viewing pleasure, here are some photos I took of that night. And yes, there was a small child at the party. What can I say? Nuts are made, not born!

Fire Puddler

The Guy's comical head.
The Guy’s comical head, complete with wonky British teeth.

The Guy Stuff and Dance
The “Stuff and Dance”, standard moves…

Guy Stuff and Sew
The “Stuff and Sew”, the only way Guy will keep his clothes on, the cad!

Neil in Guy's weird red cowboy hat
Is it a cowboy hat? A Puritan hat? A sombrero? Whatever it is, it’s too small!

Convicted and condemned for all eternity
Guy Fawkes, convicted and condemned for all eternity

Flame on!
Flame on!

Ever defiant, even after 500 years!
Ever defiant, even after 500 years.

An eery picture of the Guy burning

I'll be back!
“I’ll be back!”

Engulfed in flames

Roaring bonfire

Shoe hanging on to... limb...
Shoe hanging on to… life?… and limb

Moon, clouds and sparks
Moon, clouds and sparks

Writing with sparklers
Writing with sparklers

Child, sparkler and dwindling bonfire
Child, sparkler and dwindling fire


The end of the Guy... until next year.
The end of the Guy… until next year…


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This entry was posted on November 26, 2008 by in Main and tagged , , .

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