Monday, December 26, 2011

Second Day of Christmas:The Essential Nativity Extra

While we might be used to the main stars of the traditional Nativity setting, I have recently taken to adding another figure to my ever expanding Domestic Nativity.

A Caganer (Catalan pronunciation: [kəɣəˈne]) is a small statue found in Catalonia, in neighbouring areas with Catalan culture such as Andorra, and in other parts of Spain, Portugal and Italy. The figure is depicted in the act of defecation. Caganer is Catalanfor "shitter".

My Cajaner is our current Papa Benny I shall post a pic when he installed for January 1. 

The reasons for placing a man who is in the act of excreting solid waste from his posterior in a scene which is widely considered holy are as follows:
  1. Just tradition.
  2. Scatological humor.
  3. Finding the Caganer is a fun game, especially for children.
  4. The Caganer, by creating feces, is fertilizing the Earth. However, this is probably an a posteriori explanation, and nobody would say they put the Caganer on the Nativity scene for this reason.
  5. The Caganer represents the equality of all people e.g. regardless of status, race, gender everyone defecates.
The article for the above quote also makes reference to the Catalan greeting before eating;  "menja be caga fort" (Eat well, shit strong).

Caganer a gift for Christmas, figures, crafts  Check out World Leaders Cajaners here

For those expecting a little more  classic reference for the second day of Christmas I should acknowledge the feast of Stephen the Martyr. The juxtaposition of feasts of life and death running back to back is missed by most of the Christmas revelry.

In Australia the feast is lost in the Boxing Day Test Match and the annual Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race. In Brisbane however there is a local celebration as the Catholic Cathedral is dedicated to St Stephen. Unlike most Cathedral's this building is not called St Stephen's Cathedral but rather the Cathedral of St Stephen. This was part of some very smart marketing by a previous administrator who also designed a logo for the building.
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