Pompeii, right into the loo

I’m a nosy sort of person and as such I absolutely love Google’s streetview! I found my parents on it – which was rather fun – but it’s in places like Pompeii that it really becomes my favourite toy! This pic here is of the amphitheatre (and “thanks” to Vesuvius, the oldest surviving of its sort in the world!) but the most guilty pleasures come from getting to peek into people’s private homes! Sure, they’re empty now, but only by force and that tragedy is for us now a goldmine. Anyone watch the Dr Who episode Pompeii? Science fiction is made out of philosophical and moral problems like that; if I had a time-machine, I’d want one that kept me invisible to the world because how could one resist interacting – the briefest of encounters could change everything! Of course, if I were ever given the chance to use such a device, I wouldn’t ask too much about the details! ;D
On to a book review: If anyone finds an English translation of Maja Lundgren’s Pompeji, it’s a book I can recomend! It’s a little weird, a little funny, a little vulgar – here’s a short translation:

Some seventeen years earlier, at the end of February AD 61, or whenever the hell it was, under the consulate of C. Paetus and P. Turpilianus, the Apostle Paul had dropped anchor in Puteoli. For two years he had been imprisoned in Caesarea, and was now, accompanied by Luke, on his way to Rome to lodge an appeal at Nero’s court. Luke was working on The Acts of the Apostles, and had just enough paper with him to write up the last few chapters, Chapters 25, 26, 27, and 28. He had already worked out most of it in his head, and he sat down to work on all four every now and again.

Paul and Luke had begun their voyage aboard the Edremit, but she succumbed to peril and was wrecked in a severe storm (there were plenty of signs that year too), which forced them to anchor in Malta, where they then continued aboard a ship bound for Syracuse in Sicily. There they stayed for two or three days before setting sail for Puteoli.

Back then, Puteoli was Italy’s largest seaport. It wasn’t Naples, and it wasn’t Pompeii, it was Puteoli, and Puteoli, known as the “window to the world,” attracted people from all over. Hence, many languages were to be heard, gods worshipped, and a plethora of wares and culinary specialties could be found. Indeed, sooner or later, everything found its way to Puteoli – ideas, philosophies, fashions, art forms, manners, and customs. In this way, Puteoli was comparable to Pompeii – although, if truth be told, it was more Pompeii than Pompeii itself.

And what’s something called that’s more Pompeii than Pompeii? Simply put, Puteoli.

Literally speaking, of course. I don’t mean this metaphorically. Metaphorically speaking, something that’s more Pompeii than Pompeii would be something else entirely. It would be something even more awesome than the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, so to speak. I mean, of teenagers, you can say that they “hang” more than those Hanging Gardens of Babylon, or that someone’s derrière does, or, for that matter, that the pyramids are only a euphemism for a particular phenomenon. Take the Colossus of Rhodes, for instance. Arguably, this colossus, too, might merely just be a euphemism for a monumental clod.

It’s available in several languages, just not sure about English!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: