Sunday, November 13, 2005

Garden Gnomes - Magnificent Obsessions

Somebody in Leavenworth has been stealing garden gnomes for months. For some difficult-to-fathom reason, garden gnomes attract the attention of odd people. For example, " provides Garden Gnome Liberation information and calls to action. We advocate an end to oppressive gardening and freedom for garden gnomes everywhere." In England, land of dotty people I would like if they hadn't oppressed my ancestors, there is a Gnome Reserve and Wildflower Garden that boasts 1000+ gnomes, and claims to captivate people for an average 1-2 hour visit. Indeed, some repressed obsessions of less-accepted natures find expression in gnomes, including "Bush Whitehouse Man-Whore Ready For Action" gnomes and the Scandalito "This is what I do to my Congressional Promises to be Ethical Gnome". More pathetically, there's even an apparently non-satirical series of individually stamped and hand-numbered George W. Bush gnomes (ironically, this Ohio-based company is taking votes on whether people are pro- or anti-Bush, and their Diebold machines have not registered any votes whatsoever - Ohio voter fraud is spread wide!).

In the charming movie, Amelie, the painfully-lovely star steals her father's garden gnome, and he receives postcards from all over the world, showing his gnome in exotic locales, sparking him to finally indulge his long-suppressed urge to travel.

Less charmingly, the website Die Screaming With Sharp Things in Your Head includes a collection of impaled garden gnomes.

Obviously, garden gnomes tap into a well of obsessiveness among many in our repressed world. That's probably a healthy thing, and, as such, I wish Officer Ron Fowle had simply ignored the private shangri-la he found at the end of a gravel path in Leavenworth. Instead, he followed it and found fifty or so garden gnomes, in an area decorated with garden chimneys, yard art, hammocks and benches. Someone's piece of heaven here on earth (yes, it was stolen, but aren't they all, at least on a metaphorical level?) has been dismantled. You can see the forlorn collection in the stolen property room.

And the world is a little sadder today because it is missing a hidden shrine of obsessiveness . . .


Blogger antimedia said...

The real question, Dan, is what are YOU doing poking around all those weird places. :-)

11/13/2005 1:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The gnomes will come back. They always come back.

11/14/2005 11:07 PM  
Blogger daffodil said...

imprisoned in a cold, dark property room...what's a poor gnome to do??? ;)

11/15/2005 8:17 AM  

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