Five things you should know about the English folk hero Guy Fawkes before donning a mask to join the Occupy Wall Street movement or celebrate Guy Fawkes Day.Well, the #Occupy folks seem to have the bombing and destruction part down.
* As part of the Gunpowder Plot, Guy Fawkes tried to blow up the House of Parliament in 1605 as a religious protest. He was caught in the cellar, tortured and hanged.
* The Fifth of November aka Guy Fawkes Day celebrations in Britain feature bonfires, fireworks and the burning the effigy of Guy Fawkes because Britons did not appreciate a conspirator trying to take down the king and parliament.
* The masks with the upturned mustache and dagger goatee were made famous by the 2006 film V for Vendetta, which was based on a faceless comic book character who plots to overthrow a totalitarian society. The image created by graphic novel artist David Lloyd for Alan Moore's story has become a symbol for anti-government and to protest any tyranny.
* Pay attention to how Republican presidential hopeful Ron Paul marks Guy Fawkes Day. During his 2007 campaign for the White House, the Texas congressman used the line from a British rhyme: "Remember, remember, the fifth of November" to rally support.
* The word "guy" is traced to Guy Fawkes. During celebrations, children would beg for "a penny for the guy" to be torched. Guy became a term for a "person of grotesque appearance" which eventually became a general reference for a man, such as bloke and chap.
Saturday, November 05, 2011
From the Houston Chronicle: