Saturday, June 24, 2006

"Fun" Facts About Late Qualifiers


1. Not invincible. The Swiss have this reputation with being neutral, but not a country to fuck with. They have had this reputation for centuries. But they did get their asses handed to them once, in the Battle of Marignano, back in the early 16th century.

2. Harry Lime thinks little of them. One of the finest films not seen by the typical American is "The Third Man", directed by Carol Reed, starring Joseph Cotton and Orson Welles. Orson Welles plays a rather amoral son of a bitch, who delivers a brilliant monologue about the interaction of crisis and art.

"Like the fella says, in Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love - they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock."

3. William Tell! Sure, he shot an apple perched on his son's head. But do you know why? It's all about Swiss nationalism, or something.

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