Karnevol 2016, Shooting Stars

Published in Highlights

The 2016 Karnevol skit - inevitably - centred on Jelsa's Christmas “Star Wars”. Friendly fun, culminating in peace.

In the run-up to Christmas 2015, the atmosphere in Jelsa became decidedly heated. When is a Christmas star the wrong kind of star? This burning question had the community polarized, with a small but vociferous section claiming that among the Christmas decorations put up by the local council was a 'communist star'. Some even refused to take part in the Christmas Eve celebrations on Jelsa's Pjaca in protest. The Mayor defended himself and 'his' star. The national press took up the story, having little else of note to report on. The poor innocent star became a political football. Some workers took it on themselves to remove it and replace it with a shooting star. The Mayor quite reasonably demurred. Most normal people in Jelsa and beyond thought the whole thing a joke. And so it became, when the time was right.

 

The Christmas kerfuffle having died down, the gifted humourists who make up Jelsa's first-class Carnival Association (Udruga Karnevol) gave the story a final airing as the culmination of the Shrove Tuesday festivities. Jelsa's Pjaca was adorned with five-pointed stars, up on walls and balconies, with a big outline on the ground in the centre of the square. There were five-pointed stars everywhere.

The stage was set for some fun with the star as the central attraction. There was a narrator on the stage, who expertly led the unfolding dialogue.

A TV commentator and cameranan on high reflected the unprecedented national media attention which Jelsa's “Star Wars” had engendered.

Overhead, two stars travelled back and forth in endless motion, one five-pointed, the other a shooting star.

Their endless motion was readily explained: one cafe owner had offered the young worker a sum of money to put up one star, another the same amount for the other. To make it fair to both, the stars were in constant motion, so that conflict was avoided.

What was the car doing right in front of the balcony? Ah. Jelsa has a parking problem, and everyone wants to park as close as possible to their favourite cafe, shop, restaurant. That's how the modern world functions, right? Meanwhile, there was a sub-plot. A group of nuns took to the stage, set up a tent, and started enjoying a picnic. Food is always central to the action in Dalmatia.

Light-hearted, with a bit of barb. The scene reflected a recent event, when Jelsa's nun were re-located. The house where they had lived for several years was given a make-over before being re-allocated to the local religious education teacher. The sudden departure of the nuns was a shock within the parish, where they had been well-known, respected and loved by several generations for their service to the community.

Every Carnival focuses on national politics as well as local happenings. So it was no surprise when the current country leaders rolled up in their Most-mobile - as in Popemobile, Most being the Bridge party which held the balance in last year's elections, and which in Jelsa was parodied as Most uzdisaja, the Bridge of Sighs. Yes, indeed, only too apt.

The story of the two stars was initiated by Jelsa's renowned blogger, the ludi Englez (mad Englishman) Paul Bradbury, famous not only for his excellent perceptive writing, but also for his short-sleeved wintertime t-shirts, his pink skin and his love of beer. Seen in the photo above in grey t-shirt, star round neck, photographing the Most-mobile. Of course he had to feature in the Carnival sketch, short sleeves, pinkness, beer and all.

Parodied Paul was subjected to a humorous portrayal of his well-known dislike of chard (blitve), which contrasts with his undying love of beer. Then he was relegated to his role of photographing and recording the events of the day. He got off lightly, according to his wife. Flanked by 'Professor' Frank John Duboković, Paul watched his doppelganger with fascination.

The politicians were duly lampooned, especially the Croatian President, who in real life has taken up a university course alongside her presidential duties, and the Prime Minister, who famously confused his words and referred to his citizens as 'buildings' in his first public speech, a gaffe he will never be allowed to forget. On stage his character sang the Prime Minister's 'Orešković song'.

Then the stars took centre stage again. The Christmas drama was re-enacted. The five-pointed star went up, came down, was replaced by the shooting star.

 

The Mayor threw a wobbly - rather more dramatic on stage than his dignified press statement which also appeared on his Facebook page.

And then a peaceful compromise was found: both stars erected to take pride of place together.

Indeed, the same solution as was found for the Christmas crisis.

The show concluded with happy singing and dancing - and a cryptic question from the compere: who will be on stage next year? which politicians? how many stars? will anyone start a sweep on it at the local betting shop? 

Paul Bradbury took up a photo-opportunity with his young doppelganger.

There was the triumphant departure of the stars of the show.

The Jelsa Carnival is always well organized from start to finish. It is one of the happiest occasions in the local calendar. The skits are witty, cleverly written and well-presented, sometimes cutting close to a nerve or bone, but never malicious or spiteful. Its success as a happy festive event for all age groups is exemplary. Long may it survive in its current form!

© Vivian Grisogono 2016

 

You are here: Home highlights Karnevol 2016, Shooting Stars

Eco Environment News feeds

  • Beach clean organiser wants to assess amount of masks and gloves discarded during coronavirus crisis

    Volunteers in this year’s Great British Beach Clean are being asked to record the personal protective equipment (PPE) they find, to get a clearer picture of the volume of plastic masks and gloves discarded during the coronavirus pandemic and their impact on the environment.

    The Marine Conservation Society (MCS), which organises the annual September event, is urging people to organise their own surveys with smaller groups of friends, family and “bubbles”, in line with government guidance.

    Continue reading...

  • Data reveals just 14% of good ecological standard and none of good chemical standard

    All English rivers have failed to meet quality tests for pollution amid concerns over the scale of sewage discharges and agricultural and industrial chemicals entering the water system.

    Data published on Thursday reveals just 14% of English rivers are of good ecological standard, a rating that suggests they are as close to their natural state as possible.

    Continue reading...

  • Castle Bytham, Rutland:These symbols of might from mite line the plough furrows where they fall to become food, or mulch

    Just outside this ancient village is a little hill. There aren’t many hills here, so you tend to notice them. Back in the day, this one had a Norman castle on it. Like many, that met a torturous end. And now, like others, it has become that weird rural symbol: a scratch of ornate type on the map, and a ghost in a place name – Castle Bytham.

    The broadleaf wood on top of the hill never saw the castle. These trees are slender, youthful. But they carry another, more venerable rural symbol. The wood ends hard at a field edge, where a path runs. The limbs of the trees lean over it, like spectators over a rail. And there they are: acorns, by the fistfuls and fistfuls.

    Continue reading...

  • Hundreds of vessels caught logging 73,000 hours of fishing in just one month in new analysis

    A vast fishing armada of Chinese vessels just off the Galápagos Islands logged an astounding 73,000 hours of fishing during just one month as it pulled up thousands of tonnes of squid and fish, a new report based on data analysis has found.

    The discovery of the giant flotilla off the archipelago that inspired Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution stirred controversy and outrage in Ecuador and abroad.

    Continue reading...

  • As forests evolve in the face of climate crisis, some surprising methods are being used to track how species migrate

    Angelica Patterson is on the lookout, shotgun in hand, as she hikes through New York state’s Black Rock Forest. She focuses on her target high up in the canopy, then bang – a branch falls to the ground. “I can’t climb trees, building scaffolding is expensive, and using a slingshot requires a lot of skill,” she says. “A shotgun is an efficient, cheap and effective way to collect the high-up leaves that have full exposure to the sun.”

    Patterson puts the northern red oak branch into a bucket of water, cutting the submerged stem to ensure that its leaves continue to function, before walking back to her laboratory in the forest.

    Continue reading...

  • Number of fires in world’s biggest tropical wetlands more than doubled in first half of 2020 compared with last year

    Continue reading...

  • Tyre attachment designed by four students aims to reduce road transport pollution

    A device that captures microplastic particles from tyres as they are emitted – and could help reduce the devastating pollution they cause – has won its designers a James Dyson award.

    The Tyre Collective, a group of masters students from Imperial College London and the Royal College of Art, scooped the UK prize of the international competition with their solution for the growing environmental scourge of tyre wear caused by road transport.

    Continue reading...

  • Strides are being made towards an open access atlas that could predict where dangerous animal-borne viruses will next appear

    How do you predict where a deadly tropical disease such as Ebola, possibly the most virulent in the world, will appear next? Since it first emerged in a small town on the edge of a Congolese forest, it has broken out in seven other African countries, often thousands of miles apart.

    Sometimes it has spilled out of remote rainforest and then disappeared for years. Other times it has turned up in cities, baffling world bodies and governments that can only try to respond as fast as possible. But actually, given good data, the notoriously unpredictable zoonotic – or animal-borne – disease, which is passed to humans via primates and probably bats, may actually be quite predictable, believes David Redding, a researcher at the ZSL Institute of Zoology in London.

    Continue reading...

  • Greg Langmo’s decades-old business was among those hit when a lethal strain decimated poultry barns across America

    In April 2015, Greg Langmo’s five turkey farms teemed with toms, hens and chicks. His family’s decades-old business in Meeker county, Minnesota, was thriving, and the hundreds of thousands of birds he bred and sold each year were healthy.

    And then, late one evening, Langmo’s phone rang. Birds in one of his barns, usually active, were sitting, unable to make the short walk to their feeders and waterers. The following morning, he found hundreds of limp, white-feathered bodies. Langmo sent some dead toms to the University of Minnesota’s veterinary diagnostic laboratory. That night, the farmer lay sleepless. Again, his phone rang. It was a vet from the lab: “You got it.”

    Continue reading...

  • The protest movement’s call for meaningful participation highlights the failings of dysfunctional Westminster politics

    It’s good entertainment, but that’s all it is. Seeing Boris Johnson ritually dismembered in parliament might make us feel better, but nothing changes. He still has an 80-seat majority, though less than 30% of the electorate voted for the Conservatives. We are reduced, for five long years, to spectators.

    Our system allows the victorious government a mandate to do what it likes between elections, without further reference to the people. As we have seen, this can include breaking international law, suspending parliament, curtailing the judiciary, politicising the civil service, attacking the Electoral Commission and invoking royal prerogative powers to make policy without anyone’s consent. This is not democracy, but a parody of democracy.

    Continue reading...

Eco Health News feeds

Eco Nature News feeds

Feed not found.