Oh my....let me see....I need to go to the shops and pick up eggs. Then I need to get my hair done. The to the pharmacy to get some refills. Oh! And it's bingo night! I so love bingo night....
Hahaha! Isn't that a funny picture? Did you know you can find funny pictures like that all over this inter-netty-webby-thing?
It's just amazing! I wonder how long it took them to train that squirrel to use a walker....And those slippers! Aren't they just adorable? Now, the pearls are obviously fake. I mean, where is a rodent going to get the money to buy pearls?
Sadly, each and every one of us knows someone that, if the preceding paragraph exited their word hole, we wouldn't be the least bit surprised. It is most likely an older relative, but not as old as we'd often hope.
Because people are idiots.
They may be book-smart, have several degrees and a whole string of letters after their name. But being well educated and intelligent doesn't mean you aren't an idiot. In fact, I know people with IQ's that would be measured as below average who aren't idiots.
There are two main types of 'smarts'. Book smarts and 'street' smarts. Street smarts are defined as knowledge gained someplace other than school. They can include things like knowing how to light a fire without matches, or how to grow plants using coffee grounds and worms. Or not to pee on an electric fence.
Some street smarts you learn from others by them teaching you or by watching, and some you learn from experience. Such as, it's not a good idea to walk up to an obviously irate, very large, very muscular man who just lit a cigarette and squirt it out with a bottle of water while saying, 'You shouldn't smoke....it's bad for you!". No one needs to teach you to not do that, right? But, some people do it anyway.
Take the man who brought in his laptop for repair today. His hard drive was giving him S.M.A.R.T. status warnings, so he backed up all his data and brought the machine in for repair before the drive completely failed. Smart man. When the unit was checked in, we asked him if he had a password. He said no. Later, when the tech booted it up to verify the issue, his Windows came to the log in screen and asked for a password. Our tech called the man and asked what his password was, and again, the man said he didn't have one. The tech said, well, I booted your machine, and it's asking me for one so I can get into Windows. The man said, "Oh....you mean my login code!"
So, yeah. People are idiots.
But, that's not the subject of the oddity.
Today, as you probably guessed from the picture, my subject is Cinderella.
No one knows who came up with the story for Cinderella. It's a story that has been passed down for centuries, and a version can be found in many cultures.
The story was first published in.....You know, I've already told you guys this part. I did a post about fairy tales about a year ago where I breifly described the history of the most popular tales. I do hate repeating myself, and I don't want you to think I'm recycling an old subject.
I'm not. But a short recap is needed to help put todays subject into context. (and to pad my word count....)
So, as I was saying, Cinderella was first published in 1697 by Charles Perrault. He changed the story to make it more fitting for the rich upper classes who could afford books. He added the fairy godmother, the mice and the pumpkin. He removed other things that were too violent for his taste. (the brothers Grimm added them back. Things like the step sisters cutting off their toes to fit in the slippers, or how the king executed them and the step-mother by making them wear red-hot iron boots and dance themselves to death)
One thing he changed was a word. There are some who think he had mis-heard the word since it wasn't in use any more, and it was an innocent mistake. Others say the word was in common use until the late 19th century, and he made the change intentionally. (wait until I tell you what Freud though about it...)
That word was Vair. He used the word Verre, instead.
So what's so odd about that? Well, those of you who speak French may have already recognized the second word.
In the story Charles published, the 'La petite Pantoufle de Vair' became 'La petite Pantoufle de Verre'.
Vair comes from the latin varius, and gives us our word, variegated. And it was used to describe the fur of the Eurasian Red Squirrel. (yes, I know I still haven't explained the difference between vair and verre. It's called suspense....deal with it..)
The winter coat for this particular squirrel is blue-grey on the back and white on the belly. It was a popular fur for the linings of cloaks and....slippers.
So, Cinderella originally wore Squirrel fur slippers until Perrault changed them to glass slippers. (Verre is French for glass..)
Why would he do that? What was wrong with squirrel slippers? Maybe he just thought that glass slippers were.....sexier? Whatever. Disney had it wrong, in any case. Who would put heels on glass shoes? Who would wear glass shoes?
But there you go. That's your oddity for today. I'm going to go have dinner now.
What do you mean I can't? Oh puh-leeze! Just because I mentioned Freud, you actually expect me to follow through and explain what I meant?
In his book 'Three Contributions To The Theory Of Sex', he claimed slippers were used in stories as a symbol for female genitalia. So, consider the symbolism of multiple feet being put into a slipper until the 'perfect fit' was found...Didn't know Cinderella was an erotic story, did you?