Burning Down The Goat

Gavle, Sweden got their goat, as they have for over four decades. Then, on Saturday, someone got the goat, so to speak. Yes, once again, Gavle’s giant straw goat was flambéed.

A giant straw goat erected each Christmas in eastern Sweden was set on fire on Saturday in a violent tradition of vandalism during the festive season that has spanned four decades.

Each year the people of Gavle build a 43-foot-tall straw goat, a traditional Scandinavian symbol of Christmas. But since the yuletide tradition began in the central Swedish city of Gavle in 1966, it has also drawn vandals, who have torched the animal 23 times since it was first set up to mark the holiday season. While the 2007 goat made it through the Christmas period intact, in other years it has been smashed, run over by a car and had its legs cut off.

The vandals have not yet managed to top the 2005 goat torching, though. That’s when Santa Claus and the Gingerbread man set the goat on fire with flaming arrows. No, really. I don’t know why the city fathers didn’t use the massive doses of fire retardant this year as they did in 2006 when I first posted about the goat toasties.

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3 Responses to Burning Down The Goat

  1. martian says:

    Why is it that some people seem to think it’s the height of fun to destroy other peoples’ property and try to wreck their holidays? When I was a teen, I had a job and earned enough extra money that at Christmas time I went out and bought some exterior Christmas lights with my own money and decorated our front porch for the holiday. I only did it that one year because vandals would sneak up and steal the bulbs, throw snow and ice balls at them to try and break the bulbs, etc. I now live in a neighborhood where people are much better behaved and I usually have at least 1000 lights on the exterior of my home for the holidays.

  2. tarpon says:

    The vandals are out all over the place. The sport around our town ia taking a machete to the blowup Christmas decorations.

  3. Bleepless says:

    Tell them that it contributes to global warming and they’ll have it protected by the army.

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