Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Keep Your Eye On The Sparrow

When the organizers of "Domino Day" in Amsterdam set about breaking their own record for falling dominoes, they overlooked something -- an open window. A sparrow flew in and knocked over 23,000 dominoes. The damage could have been worse since workers were in the process of setting up 4.3 million dominoes for Friday night's record attempt. Fortunately for the domino people, they had prepared for a mishap by deliberately leaving 750 gaps in the chain. Unfortunately for the sparrow, an exterminator killed the bird with an air rifle.

(insert your own joke about smoking legalized marijuana and watching dominoes fall for several hours -- or about how legalized prostitution should give the Dutch better ways to spend a Friday night)

Judging from these photos (click on each photo to see the next), it's a pretty elaborate, artistic show. No, these are not your father's black dominoes with white dots. It looks like they have a literary theme, at least this year, with Don Quixote, Pinocchio, the Hunchback of Notre Dame and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea represented, among others. (hat tip to Ross for leading me in English to the German (corrected) site)

By the way, this spectacle is put on by Endemol, the same company that has foisted the reality TV programs Big Brother and Fear Factor on American audiences. I guess I'd rather sit through three hours of dominoes falling than three minutes of someone eating a sausage made of live leaches.


Gerar Dus said...

The site is German not Dutch ;). The show is completely pointless, by the way. Some blogs and radiohosts are already offering money to people who manage to destroy the domino setup before the actual show. We will take revenge for the poor bird! Also the animal protection organizations are planning to take the broadcasting company to court.

Best wishes from Holland.

David Johnsen said...

Thanks for the correction. I've changed it in the original. I had visited so many Dutch sites that I didn't notice the one I used was German. And of course, Google can translate German to English (no such luck with Dutch), although it doesn't translate the pages after the first click of the photo.

It sounds harsh to shoot a cornered bird when all it wanted was to get out of the place. Unfortunately for those who want to sabotage the dominoes, they probably won't be leaving any windows open anymore!

Gerar Dus said...

For Dutch->English translations, use good old

We will see if something happens with the dominoes before Friday ;).