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Swan Song

A friend of mine fell in love with a woman from across the pond, so he packed up and moved a few thousand miles. Since then he’s been publishing an amusing blog about being an American in the UK. Here’s his latest offering:

“Our town has a pleasingly diminutive shopping mall in its center. This mall is named Swan Walk Mall to commemorate The Swan Pub that was destroyed to make way for it, just as the pub, one must assume, was named for the swans it displaced. In 1990 a fetching bronze sculpture was placed in the central atrium, depicting three swans gliding in for a landing on a smooth plane of water, with tiny fountains squirting against the webbed feet and tail of the lead swan to give the illusion of movement.

It is a soothing and appropriate addition to the mall and for sixteen years people have been admiring it, milling around it or even standing next to it without once being killed, maimed or even happy-slapped by these placid figures. But lack of danger isn’t enough to fool the Health and Safety Enforcers; they have deemed the statue unsafe and it must go.

As a final act of lunacy, they have walled the statue off to keep the public away from the danger until they find a secure place to dump it.”

Read the rest here.

Update:  The swans have been removed, but in a rare display of sanity the powers that be have decided to allow them back as part of ongoing renovations.

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1 Comment(s)

  1. I read through that blog post and saw the pictures. I’m not sure what to make of it, partly because I can’t quite tell what’s holding the statues up. It seems that the camera angle didn’t capture what was supporting them.

    So the question I have is: Were the supports for these statues deteriorating? Perhaps a professional examination revealed dangerous wear and tear that wasn’t visible to the untrained eye.

    If so, I would definitely support walling off the statue. We wouldn’t want one of those swans toppling over and hurting a child.

    But as I understand it nobody’s given a reasonable explanation along those lines. The authorities could have handled it better by getting their facts straight and being open and honest about what was going on.

    Parrot | Oct 2, 2007 | Reply

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