Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Anti-2009 Protest

The French are well known for protesting and striking at every whim, every day of the calendar. But who would have thought of this?
"One boisterous French group is planning a protest rally on the evening of Dec 31," writes Time, "demanding that the world refuse to shed 2008 to make way for a troublesome-looking New Year."

"'We’re saying no to the tyranny of time, no to the merciless onslaught of the calendar, and yes to staying put in 2008,' says a militant member of the Fonacon group, which is organizing its fourth annual anti-New Year protest [...] 'Last year we warned a mocking world that 2008 would be horrible compared to 2007, and we were right. This time everyone acknowledges 2009 will be terrible, so now is the moment to unite together and refuse this new, rotten year!'"

"As seriously bleak as 2009 is expected to be, a call to mount barricades and bar the New Year’s arrival sounds like a gag even in strike-happy France. That’s because Fonacon’s protest is decidedly tongue in cheek [...] 'We're making a mockery of two particularly French traits: a penchant for protesting whatever navel special-interest groups happen to be gazing into, and the glorification of the chic, well-heeled soirée as an art form.'"
Indeed, the petits blagueurs behind this initiative "are rooted in a bedrock of self-deprecation, echoing France's tradition of iconoclastic comics getting the French to laugh at their more ridiculous characteristics." Even the Fonacon name is a pun. So enjoy the farce, navel-gazing fellow frogs, and happy 2009!
photo Reuters - New Year's Eve on the Champs Elysées in Paris