The Burry Man Walks! And, Drinks and Collects

The Burry Man is a terrific writers’ site, bursting with resources, advice, insights and support for new and established writers alike.

Since 1997, the community of writers known as The Burry Man Writers Center has been a primary source of research information and freelance job leads for working professional and talented beginning writers. Along with Inked-In, our social network for writers, musicians and artists, The Burry Man is what might be called “intellectual property” — a space on the Internet where writers from all over the world can come for encouragement, advice and information, without charge.

“The Burry Man” is also the name of a curious tradition about to take place in Scotland near Edinburgh. The second Friday in August. Each year since probably the Dark Ages, okay at least it’s thought to be thousands of years old. You look at the guy and the tradition and it screams Pagan, to me. As I was saying, the second Friday in August, – hold on! That’s this Friday – and I’ve got no ticket to Edinburgh! Crap! Day late and dollar short again!

Well, here’s what happens: a very stout-hearted man (John Nicols in his 10th year running!), who must be born in the village Queensferry, Scotland dons a suit entirely of prickly burrs collected from the nearby roadsides. After layers of protective clothing are put on, he is literally sewn into a suit of burrs. He walks the streets of the village collecting alms from the villagers.

What alms you ask?

Why whisky and money, of course!

He walks, drinks, collects…drinks, walks, collects.

But why you ask?

Well we’re not entirely sure, but it’s thought to be a protective ceremony for the year. Prosperity and satiety. He may be a scapegoat enduring penance on behalf of the village, and this may be a way of ensuring favorable conditions in the upcoming year. Kinda looks like Oscar the Grouch, doesn’t it?

Interesting it’s 08-08-08 this year. Wonder if the Burry Man has any Chinese connections?

Read about him all here, on the Burry Man’s site. There are two very cool videos there, too.

And by all means, if you’re a writer, know a writer, love a writer, want to be a writer…get thee to the Burry Man Writers Center!

~ by jacqueline1230 on August 6, 2008.

3 Responses to “The Burry Man Walks! And, Drinks and Collects”

  1. Well, bless your heart, Jackie. The most culinary part of the Walk is the fried thingies you can get at the Ferry Fair, which officially starts the next day. Oh, that and the whisky … the Burry Man (the person) stops at each of the six pubs on the High Street at the end of the day.

  2. I think I’ll have to make some Scotch eggs and drink a wee bit o’ proper Scotch on Friday! Mmmm fried thingees good. Only six pubs?

  3. Jackie, the High Street is less than 1200 feet long … so that makes a pub every 200 feet.

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