February 10, 2013

Helau, Alaaf, or Ahoi! …



... carne vale is sure to follow.



Großer Karneval (Grand Carnival) by Karl Hofer, 1928, Pinakothek der Moderne



Start sobbing now? 

Absolutely not!



In Germany faced with the less-than-inspiring prospect of a few wintry months, the German people console themselves with the bacchanalian revelries associated with Fasching, which in lands north of Bavaria, is called Karneval.  It starts on 11.11.11. (November 11, 11 minutes after 11 p.m.) and grants the speakers of the Fasching Guilds Narrenfreiheit (Jester's privilege the ability and right to speak and mock freely without being punished.) 


The entire affair peaks on Rosenmontag and Faschingsdienstag (the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday).  Traditionally, it’s the time to indulge your hedonistic tendencies before the onset of Lent, and some Germans take their annual holidays in order to do precisely that.  Many city pedestrian zones are overrun with normally sober citizens now glad in outrageous fancy dress for a gargantuan party. 




Ladies prowl with scissors snipping of men’s ties, doctors in hospitals have been known to make their ward visits on roller skates, and sober businessmen appear in red Bozo wigs and out sized plastic noses. And Fasching parades are plentiful.







So dust off you costume, grease your skates, and drop your inhibitions…






…for, there is a time for every purpose under heaven ... A time to laugh, a time to weep ... A time to dance, a time to mourn ...and a time to choose your Lenten penance.



But, comes Easter Sunday…

6 comments:

Charles said...

"They presently, like prentices upon Shrove-Tuesday, take the game into their own hands and do what they list"; …
"SevenDeadly Sins of London", 1606

frenchtoast said...

The day cometh in which we take no note of time, and forget that we are living in a practical age which relegates romance to printed pages and merriment to the stage. Yet what is more romantic than Carnival — the too brief hours of light, music, and fantastic merriment which seem to belong to no age and yet to all?

Anja said...

Always at these kinds of masquerades,
Workers take their special pleasures.
They wail, "We must watch our parades!
This is something we've all treasured!"
Tomorrow we'll return to the usual grind,
When Mardi Gras is,
sadly,
over,
Food and drink will be hard to find
And we'll do our best to recover. ~Anon

Alistair said...

Auch uns, in Ehren sei's gesagt,
Hat einst der Karneval behagt,
Besonders und zu allermeist
In einer Stadt, die München heißt.
Wie reizend fand man dazumal
Ein menschenwarmes Festlokal,
Wie fleißig wurde über Nacht
Das Glas gefüllt und leer gemacht,
Und gingen wir im Schnee nach Haus,
War grad die frühe Messe aus,
Dann können gleich die frömmsten Frau'n
Sich negativ an uns erbau'n…
-Wilhelm Busch

Syl v O said...

Alaaf, Alaaf, Helau, Helau
so sage ichs von Frau zu Frau.
Wer bleibt da schon zu Haus im Bau
bunt geschminkt, mit grellen Hüten
vollgepackt die großen Tüten.
Doch leider nur für kurze Zeit
denn Aschermittwoch ist nicht weit!

'lil bro said...

Weiberfastnacht

Männer, ich möchte euch nur sagen,
heute geht´s euch an den Kragen,
die Weiber kommen mit der Schere,
wollen Schlipse nicht Karriere.

Krawatten sind ihr großes Ziel,
erzeugen großes Glücksgefühl,
vielleicht sogar ein wenig Macht,
die ihren Übermut entfacht.

Gegönnt sei ihnen das Vergnügen,
heute soll der Mann nicht rügen,
was sich das Weib einst ausgedacht,
wird gefeiert heut, als Fassenacht.

von Horst Rehmann