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...a sweatshop of moxie

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Quick, to the Snopes Cave, Batman!

As I keep telling people, conspiracy theories are the graveyard of the intellect -- where all facts go to die.

So you may think that conspiracy theory debunkers are high on my list of Faves, and you would be right.

For a decade now, Barbara and David Mikkelson have been those dastardly fiction fighters, seeking out truth and justice wherever they are found online -- being the husband and wife team who run the exceptional Snopes site, where many an urban legend goes to die.

Now I know what you're thinking:

"Hey, what's wrong with believing in the Tooth Fairy?"


"I like the Easter Bunny and no high-falutin' urban myth debunkers will tell me different!"

-or even-

"People who go around investigating the veracity of The Mouse Skeleton in the Coke Bottle story have got a screw loose"

Yeah, like Albert Schweitzer saving lepers in Africa was so sane.

Don't pay attention to the nay-sayers, David and Babs! We, your adoring and non-donating readers, all love you. Although I still believe in Santy Claus.

So as I traipsed along to Snopes today, what should I find but a wonderful story that seemed to have escaped our attention in November 2004. I can't imagine what was happening then to have caused this oversight, can you?

As everyone knows, Elizabeth II is Colonel-in-Chief of many many regiments, not to mention Head of the British Armed Forces.

In this capacity, one she is rumoured to enjoy a lot, she frequently visits regiments and poses for the requisite snap to commemorate the event -- that much-loved British tradition of the "group photograph".

The regiment in question is the 1st Battalion of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, which is actually from Canada, being called "Princess Louise's Own" after Queen Victoria's 4th daughter, who was married to the Duke of Argyll, then Governor-General of Canada.

Down plopped HM the Queen, seated, as is the custom, next to the two ranking officers between her, including the CO, a very young 38-year-old Colonel, Simon West. He, like his brother officers, was resplendent in his tam o' shanter, dirk and kilts.

But hang on a mo' -- look at that sly grin on his face. He looks very pleased with himself, even for a man seated next to a woman with a crown in her handbag. Could something be awry?

Who let the dawgs out?

It turned out, this was the airbrushed photo, since the original showed that another beloved tradition was also being upheld. Scots don't wear underpants under their kilts. Shhh! Pass it on.

Modesty dictates I not post pr0n on my site, but you can check the original HERE.

And of course, Colonel West apologised profusely for his lapse, and said no way in a million months of Sundays did he intend to cause the Queen any disrespect, mmm-kay.

But I'm not so sure.

His handsome rakish smile reminds me of another photo, also showcasing a military man meeting a famous lady.

Keep Your Friends Close and Your...

How goes the saying, Lieutenant? "Cross your heart, and hope to die". Yikes.


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