Yesterday we spent all day at the venerable British Museum. One of the many warehouses where Briton keeps the stuff it found while poking about the globe. I well aware that there are controversies surrounding a fair amount of this stuff (like, why is it sitting in Briton instead of museums located in the countries where it originated), and I am aware that many people have very strong, conflicting, and no doubt valid opinions about it. I also have opinions, but as I’m just visiting these here parts, the only one I’ll record is; Thank goodness I can show all this amazing stuff to The Experiments in one nicely organized place without having to go to several dozen different countries. Even more amazing, it was free (though not being total swine, we donated the requested £5 a head).
Being children, the Experiments were of course thrilled to be dragged through endless corridors filled with broken pottery, dry old dead guys and statues of assorted deities who seemed unconcerned that their John Thomas’ (still in England) had been chiseled off.
However there were a few things that connected. The Temple of the Naiads (Possibly the most striking display). The Hall of Clock & Watches (which are all running!). The Temple of Sargon, with it’s imposing gate statues and ranks upon ranks of carved warrior friezes. The fact that you could buy chocolate copies of the Rosetta Stone in the gift shop. (That last was a bit of a “gimmee” to be honest. By my estimate, you could completely outfit yourself from head to foot in various iterations of the Rosetta Stone, and construct yourself a decent shelter from the rest of the products available.) In fact I could make the argument that a museum’s gift shop is a handy little catalog of ‘what’s cool’ in that particular museum. A fact that the Experiments noted. Kaja had been keen to see ‘The Dying Gaul’, but we were unsure as to whether Briton’s copy thereof was in the British Museum (It’s not. It’s in London’s Courtauld Gallery), but Experiment # 1 offhandedly remarked that he was pretty sure it wasn’t here, “Or else it would be all over the Gift Shop.” Well spotted, that boy.
We also spotted (and were spotted by) a surprisingly large number of LonCon members who were sucking up culture and intellectual stimulation after a long weekend of drinking and listening to Girl Genius Radio Plays. We plan on attending an authentic ‘Bear Baiting and Cat Inna Bag’ event tomorrow. I shall be curious to see if I recognize anyone there as well.