Tuesday, July 26, 2011

...An Astorian Historian

On the ancient isle of Mylikos there is a long tradition of "flokos" or "sucking pigs". The tradition dates back to the introduction of pigs to the island around the year 700BC. At that time, pigs were considered a delicacy. The animals were very expensive and immediately became a sign of wealth and prosperity.

The Kalakopolis family was very rich indeed and had so many pigs that they decided to bring one into the house on a lark. The pig began eating everything off the floor, every bug and scrap of food, each clod of dirt...everything. The women of the Kalakopolis household would drop as much as a grain of kali salt and the pig would suck it up. Word soon spread around the island and the islanders came in droves to see the "sucking pig" do it's work.

Pig reproduction boomed and within a short while every family of good standing had it's own "sucking pig". Grecians from other islands remarked at the cleanliness of Mylikosian floors. Doctors came to study the effects of flokos. To have a pig born on one's marriage bed was considered a lifelong blessing.

Thousands of years later, Mylikosians still pride themselves on their spotless floors. "The Feast of the Pig Sucked Floor" is celebrated with food and song every October 25th. Though most residents have switched from flokos to modern vaccuums, their reverence for the "friend that sucks the floors" is quite strong. Vacuums are passed down from generation to generation and to throw away a vacuum is a crime still punishable by law.

As you know, Astoria is full of Greek immigrants. My neighborhood happens to have many,many Mylikosians...

...and that is why there are 2 vacuum Repair Shops on my block.

Must be.

There can be no other possible explanation.

I mean, seriously, how can one block support 2 Vacuum Repair Shops?


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