the Swedish Christmas goat

Swedish Christmas straw goatI forgot about writing on the giant straw Christmas goat in Sweden this past Christmas.  They build one every year, a big 43 foot tall one which weighs 3 tons.  Almost every year it is burned down by vandals.  Last year they put some special fireproof materials on it, and one of the officials said, “not even napalm can set fire to the goat now”.  To me, that sounds like a challenge…

So I looked online to find out what happened this past year, and I found out there are two giant straw goats built there each year.  One of them was burned down this past year (2007).  I also found out there are people who make bets on when the goat will be burned down.  And in the mid-1980s, there was a guy named Gunnar Hedman who built a 41 foot goat with the help of other village peoples, then after Christmas they burn it down.

Swedish Christmas straw goat on fireI want to build a giant straw Christmas goat, too.  It would be a huge tourism attraction.  This was discussed some last year, when we decided to build it in Mango-Man’s yard, since he has a few acres and lives outside the city limits (so we wouldn’t be subject to city ordinances and such, although they may not have laws against giant straw goats).  We’d sell nachos and hot chocolate, and we’d build bonfires where you can roast marshmallows.  And then at some point we’d burn the goat down, since that’s part of the tradition. It would be a great time.  We could even sell miniature straw goats that people can put under their Christmas tree and then burn whenever they want to.

Sadly, Mango-Man has thus far failed to see the ingeniousness of this plan, and he’s resisting.  But we will keep after him, until he relents or a more suitable place is found.  Someday this will happen, though, and it will be awesome.  (And you heard it here first!)  It can become one of our holiday traditions.

FYI, the Guinness world record for a giant straw Christmas goat is 49 feet high, held by the same people that build one every year.  I’m thinking we can break that, and then we’d be famous.

17 thoughts on “the Swedish Christmas goat

  1. Not a Goat Farmer, but Stayed at a Holiday Inn Express

    So all we have to do to hold a world record is to build a 50ft straw goat? And then we get to burn it? Sign me up! I second the nomination of Mango Man’s lawn as the idea spot for an oversized goat. And once we get the record for world’s largest straw goat, we should build more gigantic farm animals out of plants. There could be a Giant Wheat Chicken, a Giant Sunflower Cow, a Slightly-Larger-Than-Usual Poison Ivy Horse, and a Normal-Sized Spinach Llama. And at the concession stand, we can sell Extra-Long Corn Dogs.

  2. Mango-Man

    there ya’ll go getting all stupid again… (okay maybe not stupid ‘again’ … I guess I should just say that ya’ll are ‘still stupid’)

    for the record I have nothing against burning giant straw goats… in fact it could be fun. I just want a giant blazing goat inferno being torched close to my house. I still thing the giant pasture behind TW’s house would be ideal.

    Fab… you could better spend your time actually writing a post at YOUR blog… also for the record… I have no flower garden… (as you all well know)

  3. Thomas Wayne

    Mango-Man said :
    I have nothing against burning giant straw goats… in fact it could be fun. I just want a giant blazing goat inferno being torched close to my house.
    I don’t know if that’s what he intended to say, but perhaps it’s one of those Freudian slips, because it says he wants a giant blazing goat being torched close to his house. So since it’s now obvious that he wants it to happen, why does he continue to resist? Is it because his wife rejects it, or because of the rumored flower garden? There must be something going on behind the scenes that he is covering up…

    Maybe he has some fear of giant straw goats… (you never know — he is kinda weird…) 🙂

  4. Fab

    I can’t write any posts until the strike is over, as I am part of the writers’ guild. I can still comment on my own time, but I can’t “cross the picket line” and betray my fellow writers like the B.o.B. writers have. Traitors!

  5. Mango-Man

    I think the site administrator must have edited my post or something… 🙂 that was SUPPOSED to say that I do NOT want a blazing goat close to my house.

  6. Fab

    Yeah, it did say that and MORE! The original text, according to my sources*, said, “I do NOT want a blazing goat close to my house because it may damage my tulips or my marigolds that grow in my window box.”

    *I am my “sources”.

  7. Beppo

    Fab, why are you part of the writers’ guild? Have they ever helped you get paid? They’ve done nothing for me. I’ve written hundreds of posts, and haven’t gotten paid anything, despite all this “work” I’ve put into these blogs. I should be making the big bucks by now, but I haven’t received one check. So I have nothing to do with that writers’ guild in Hollywood.

    Actually, I recently started my own guild : The Union of Cool. You should apply. (I don’t know if you’d get accepted or not, because there’s an arduous entrance exam, and you must of course meet certain criteria, but there’s no harm in applying. And you might want to actually write stuff on your blog, because that would be considered, too.) 🙂

  8. Fab

    That sounds like a lot of work to me. I already have a job. Oh, yeah, that reminds me. It seems to me that the number of posts on this and another blog have actually DECREASED since the writer became unemployed. Perhaps that is on the exit interview form in the “Reason for termination” slot: “Blogs all day instead of works.” It seems now that blogs without work are dead! 🙂 Hey, that almost sounds scriptural! Maybe dead is too strong a word, but more posts (daily) should happen when you’ve got all day……

    As for this so-called “Union of Cool”, if you’re a member, that took all the cool out of it for me, so I won’t be joining.

  9. Thomas Wayne

    Sweden also has a tradition of a Christmas gnome. Apparently he gives out presents kinda like Santa Claus. Gnomes are cool and stuff, but I think they have better uses than replacing Ol’ Saint Nick.

  10. Fab

    Yes, gnomes are quite useful. They make great projectiles for home-made air cannons. Oh, how fun it is to watch them fly. 🙂 I’m talking about real gnomes, though, not some stupid lawn ornaments.

  11. Thomas Wayne

    It’s almost Christmas again (2008) — what’s the word on building the giant straw Christmas goat in Mango-Man’s yard? Judging by what he said above, he wants it to happen, but he’s just making excuses for some hidden reason. So what we should do is just have this festival anyway, and once he sees the fun of it and gets a cut of the proceeds, he will realize how awesome an idea it is. So let’s make it happen!

  12. Pingback: update on the Swedish Christmas goat, 2008 « Buffet o’ Blog

  13. Pingback: building our own giant straw Christmas goat « Buffet o' Blog

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