Importance of Oscar

October 20, 2008 § Leave a comment

It was 2pm and the weather was bright and sunny. This suited me just fine for a visit to the Cimetiere du Pere Lachaise. I certainly did not want dark and gloomy weather as I was pretty sure I would be scared shitless walking through a cemetary. Also, it was Sunday, so there should be tons of people there, making the experience less gruesome I thought. I made my way there with one intention, which was to see what the big deal was at Oscar Wilde’s grave.

I got off at Pere Lachaise metro stop and quickly got duped into buying a map at the entrance. Two seconds after I parted with 2 euros then I realized I should’ve just taken a photo of the bloody large map in front! DOH! The cemetary is really big, and after a while I noticed it was more like a park than a cemetary. People were strolling leisurely with their families and kind of reminded me of the museum, where people would stop occasionally at each grave and study it seriously. Many of the graves are elaborate, with life-sized sculptures of their occupants in various philosophical poses. I don’t know any of these people so I pass them by and head straight to Division 89.

I got there and saw a number of people were taking photos of themselves at Oscar's grave. There was even one woman sitting on it which I thought was rather disrespectful. Anyway the grave is large and as you can see from my photo at the top, is covered with hundreds of kisses from strange women, or perhaps men, who knows. Ew. I'm not sure where those lips have been and don't really want to press mine against the same surface.

I walk around the tomb and the epitaph on the back of Oscar Wilde's tomb reads:

And alien tears will fill for him
Pity’s long broken urn
For his mourners will be outcast men
And outcasts always mourn

I wonder what Oscar would have thought of the creepy grave-kissing phenomenon?


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