Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Mummy Dearest

I've been remiss in my postings as I'm hosting some very good friends. We spent the weekend doing lots of touristy things--seeing sights, eating at restaurants, shopping. I've also taken them to other parts of the cities that only locals know. The Alamo was fun, as were the many hours spent exploring the cities. Okay, truthfully, not all of it was fun. I'm not a big shopping person, but I know my friend luvs to shop. So I took them up to a huge outlet shopping mall, where her husband and I suffered while she eagerly ran from store to store, spending 8 hours trying stuff on and buying various items! Thank goodness for pretzels and other fast food places, because I was starving on that forced shopping march. They bought so much crap that we had to mail them to their home--too much stuff to fit in their luggage!

But the thing that really bothered me about our excursions were the museum visits. Now, I like museums. Okay, who am I kidding, I luv museums! All that art work, those fantastic exhibits, wildlife recreations, and dinosaur bones! So much stuff to see and learn at these awesome places! But no matter how grand a museum is or how impressive their collections are, I always get bothered when I see a certain exhibit. I don't like seeing mummies in any museum. And I'm not just talking about Egyptian mummies; I'm talking about all types of mummies--including bog bodies, Native Americans, and even European remains.

It's not that I'm afraid of them. But I just think it's kind of rude and disrespectful to display these bodies. Clearly, someone went through all the trouble and care to carefully prepare and preserve these bodies. The rituals and artifacts are evidence that these bodies were meant to find peace in the next life. And even those bodies who weren't ceremonially prepped after death still deserve dignity and respect as human remains.

How would we feel if our loved ones, or even we, were dug up and placed on exhibition? Isn't that a violation of our very spirit, a staggering attack on the very nature of humanity? Who decided that it was okay to display these people, especially after their loved ones took great care to prepare the bodies for the afterlife? It's bad enough they dug up a dead person on put them in a museum, but then have their coffin and belongings put on display? That's just sad and rude. It's no wonder mummies go on murderous rampages when they wake up and start walking!

While my friends spent time 'ooh'ing and 'ahh'ing over the mummies, I moved on to the nearby exhibits and waited for them to finish. I didn't want to ruin their experience. Besides, there are so many other great things that museums display that I can enjoy.

17 comments:

  1. How do you feel about Zombies?

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  2. I'd never considered that before. Not that I've seen a mummy in the flesh. So to speak...

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  3. I am with you on both the shopping(Which I hate , why do girls take so long ???) and the mummies

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  4. MJ, I've no problem shooting zombies...those mofos want to eat my brain!

    IDV, it's something that bothers me sometimes at museums. It's one thing to have a traveling exhibition from a country; it's another when the items on display were pilfered and pillaged from those countries and put on display in foreign lands.

    Beast, hear, hear. I don't mind going shopping for things I need or buying things for others, but I don't know how some people can just spend hours and hours doing it for fun!

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  5. Never really thought of mummies like that, but you're right! We wouldn't normally donate the bodies of our deceased family members to a museum so people can ooh and ahh. Course that's what some funerals are all about, when people take turns approaching the coffin and saying stuff like, "She looks so good!" or "He looks so peaceful!"

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  6. Tara, that's true; it's one thing to donate your body to science, but it's totally another to dig up someone else and put them on display. I'm always glad to see fotos of the deceased displayed at a funeral...the fotos give another perspective of a life that has transitioned. And sometimes, even with all that makeup, the deceased never quite looks like their picture.

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  7. I went to see mummies at the British Museum because I was curious. I wasn't all that fussed about them. When you put it that way you are right.

    That being said one of the oldest bog bodies in Dennark is at my hometowns museum. First off it is disgusting and why anyone want to see it is beyond me. However they found out that this particular bog body was a nobody who was killed for no particular reason and then chucked in the bog (so to speak heh). I'm sure he wouldn't have minded too much.

    How can you not like shopping?

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  8. CP, that sucks for the bog body! Well, I guess I don't really mind shopping for stuff that I need or getting someone something nice.

    What I don't like is being dragged along while someone tries on endless stuff and looks at crap that doesn't interest me at all! And I hate having to lie and say, "Yes, it does look good on you", when I really want to say, "Oh, my god! Are you out of your freakin mind! You look like a ginormous turnip!" But there's no stopping someone when they really want something!

    I suppose that wouldn't be a bad thing if that's the look they were going for; I've learned the hard way some people don't appreciate honesty--well, my tastes at least. I'm a very simple, no fuss kind of guy when it comes to fashion.

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  9. I am fine with it, afterall if Roy Rogers can stuff Trigger and Bullet..not sure what he did with Dale...anyway that pretty much sets the benchmark.

    I would love to see those plasticised corpses..they all donated their bodies..that would be cool.

    I suppose if you believe that there is a supernatural element to death it might be a little weird...
    but wouldn't the soul have left?
    So they 'got's no soul' Daddy-O!

    Anyway, those Mummies are just a bunch of amino acids collecting dust..
    just like the other exhibits.

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  10. Donnnnnn: they had that exhibition Bodies here in Copenhagen earlier this year. I thought it would be disgusting so I almost went to see it. In the end thought
    They closed it before I got the chance to see it. But thats ok, it's a little creepy.

    I know, sometimes the truth is not appreciated and you never know exactly when you should say lose the burka you look like an over sized bowling pin.

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  11. Donnnn, I don't mind donated bodies put on display; I just think it's rude to intentionally pillage someone's tomb, then put their corpse and belongings on display for the paying audience! Even worse are poor people like Lenin, who asked to be buried next to his mother; only to have his comrades dip his body in wax and put him on display like a precious moments figurine!

    I say, return the dead to their resting places. I'd feel just as bad if someone wanted to dig up bodies from the Tomb of Unknowns and put them up in a museum. Now donated bodies, I don't mind lookin at; the same goes for animals, esp. since some of 'em try to eat us!

    CP, sometimes for the sake of friendship, you've got to lie and play along til your friends come to their senses...or you end up having to give 'em some tough love and find a nice way of saying: 'No, you don't have a muffin top! You've got a full on nuclear mushroom cloud going with those ridiculously tight hotpants! Take 'em off! They're hazardous to your health and my eyes!'

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  12. I guess I'm still learning. I told a mate a while back that he should not wear white.

    He hasn't called me back.

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  13. CP, a true friend would realize that you were only trying to help him out by being honest. Some people need to be told they look ridiculous; better hearing it from a friend than from a laughing public.

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  14. Somehow he was more accepting when I told him to stop wearing white tube socks in black dress shoes.

    I should call him. Maybe later.

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  15. CP, that's very good advice. The worst has to be people who wear ankle socks with dress shoes!

    Good luck with your call!

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  16. I had never thought that way about mummies but I think you make a very valid point.

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  17. Snooze, it's just my personal discomfort with the thing. I'm sure other people feel uncomfortable seeing dead animals on display in museums. I just don't like seeing people who were put to rest be dug up and put up for entertainment.

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