Friday, July 27, 2007

Italian Garden Gnomes go Missing – Save the Gnomes

Northern Italians are worried for the garden gnomes. Over the past couple of years they have been disappearing during the night. The thefts are propagated by an international organization dedicated to freeing the gnomes from the mediocrity of middleclass suburban gardens. Homeowners from Cuneo to Trieste are concerned for the well being of their beloved garden friends. A group of young entrepreneurs has come up with an interesting solution to stop this new form of cultural terrorism.

Seven young men from Cuneo in Piemonte will dress up as the fabled dwarves and entertain kids for an evening before camping out in people's gardens. "Our services are very cheap. We're prepared to work for the price of a dinner," said Fabio, the leader of the group. The gnomes' fees are next to nothing anyway since they're offering their services on eBay, the online auction site, for as little as one euro.

"We'll even work for free if people feed us," Fabio said.

"The Front has to be stopped".

Though never as active in Italy as other European countries, the Garden Gnome Liberation Front is still capable of striking fear into the hearts of gnome-owners. In a recent case in the northern Italian city of Bressanone, several gnomes were reported missing after a lecture in the nearby city of Brunico by a Swiss academic whose theories have sought to legitimize the Front's pranks.

The Front is devoted to saving gnomes from allegedly unnatural fates in boring middle-class gardens and restoring them to their native habitats in rugged mountaintop scenery. The Swiss professor, Fritz Friedmann, wrote a book claiming that gnomes are living beings imprisoned by man in cement because they are repositories of the wisdom of the "Great Dwarf".

Do not be surprised if your Travelocity customer service is lacking when traveling in Europe this year. It is not because they prefer the mundane over the unique instead it is rumored that security concerns for their beloved mascot have limited their presence.


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