Remember Remember

Fireworks Night in the UK was always supposed to be a thing, but I struggle to remember any from my childhood that ever came close to living up to the hype. Sure, we all know the rhyme about “Remember, Remember, the Fifth of November,” but I genuinely can’t think of any Fifths of November that were worth remembering.

One of the problems is the time of year. Let me tell you something about the beginning of November in Scotland, at least when I was a kid: they were wet and cold, and the very opposite of the conditions that would be optimum for starting a bonfire, or hanging around outside to watch fireworks. Many were the Bonfire Nights that I gamely went outside hoping for the best, and just stood there, shivering and damp, wondering if things were ever going to get exciting or even worth being outside in the first place. (Spoilers: they didn’t.)

I couldn’t tell you if every Fifth of November failed for me because I have no real interest or excitement surrounding fireworks, or if I have no real interest or excitement surround fireworks because every Fifth of November failed for me; it’s a snake eating its own tail made of disappointment and a frustrated belief that, for real you guys, isn’t this meant to be fun? It’s something that’s followed me to the U.S., though, where Bonfire Night isn’t really a thing — the Fifth of November here is mostly a day for V for Vendetta fetishists, from what I can tell — but the Fourth of July is, and I can (un)happily report that, even in the summer, there’s not that much to see that’s worth standing around with your neck craned in case some explosions are more colorful than others.

All of this, I know, marks me as some terrible killjoy, but the reality of the situation is… I am. Stay inside, and watch something good on television, instead. Catch up on Doom Patrol; this season’s been really something.

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