Friday, December 23, 2005

My Own Private Fra Angelico

After mentioning my enjoyable foray to the Metropolitan Museum to my congregation last Sunday, and how beautiful Fra Angelico's "Annunciations" were, one of my dear elders, a native of Italy, gave me a Fra Angelico to call my own. Here's a picture of it:

It turns out that there is a hazelnut liqueur named after the blessed Fra. On the label it says that Fra Angelico was a hermit who lived by the Po River in Italy 300 years ago, and when not praying "created unique recipes for liqueurs." The bottle even has a monk's cincture (a rope belt) "which symbolizes freshness."

Now I got a good laugh at all this. Not a drinker myself, I'll perhaps take a sip sometime this weekend, but I found the whole conceit hilarious. Fra Angelico was no hermit, and he lived 600 years ago, and when not praying with his fellow Dominicans, he was painting, not brewing! The cincture around his waist was not a symbol of freshness (!), but of chastity.

Don't you just love marketing people? Can't you just imagine the look on the person's face who came up with this idea, when upon their death God inquires of him (or her), "Just what were you thinking that day? Would you like to meet the real Fra Angelico? Well you can't, because he dwells in glory too bright for your eyes." The marketing person, amazed says, "So all this Christianity stuff is true?" God replies, "Yes. Meet my Son, he will tell you where to go next..."


Blogger Miss Eagle said...

Ars, the Fra Angelico brings back some happy memories. Some years ago, I was living in Tennant Creek in Outback Australia. Eating a celebration Christmas Dinner at midday - even though it is a cold meal of chicken and ham and seafood and salads and one is in air conditioning - is not all that wonderful. I was able to convince another ten of my friends that we ought to do things European style and have our Christmas meal on Christmas eve - in the evening when it is cooler and more enjoyable. Christmas Day this particular year fell on a Monday so we had all weekend to prepare a very formal respast (men turned up in cumberbunds and bow ties) : the European Mystery Progressive Dinner which moved from place to place including walking to church by lantern and candlelight for Midnight Mass. After that came our final stop: for cheese and nibblies and, among other things, my first taste of Fra Angelico. The next year one of my friends presented me with my very own bottle.

3:26 PM  
Blogger Scribe said...

Neat! I must confess to not really liking it. But my wife and daughters (grown now) took a fancy to it! I suspect Fra Angelico has taken a liking to Mrs. Butterworth in our cupboard.

Merry Christmas Eagle's Child, in the warm Antipodes!

9:50 AM  

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