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Ceremony of the Great Leader

Updated on December 31, 2011

The Procession

Who Are You Going to Believe? Me or Your Lying Eyes?

I can only picture this pomposity as might Woody Allen in one of his early films.

With all the pomp and circumstance surrounding the burial of their exalted leader, it would be hilarious if his box slid off the top of the limo and tumbled to the street, with the honor guard feverishly but clumsily trying to place the Great Leader back into his sanctum.

Better yet, if the "body" slid forward over the hood and got run over, exposing that the Great One was just a cloth doll made of straw. In this case the honor guard would be completely flummoxed, trying to stuff handfuls of straw into their overcoats, inside their trousers, while making wild gestures for the camera men to turn off their equipment.


One of the soldiers in stress bends down and attempts to burn the straw with a cigarette lighter.


Another soldier kicks the lighter out of his hand and in written translation we read (while the two soldiers speak in Korean):


"What in the hell are you doing."


The other replies, "Isn't it better to have our Great One burned here at this stop than to witness his remains scattering ignomaneously across the street?"

"You fool. This isn't the Great Leader. We got rid of him at a crematorium last night."


"Then this is just a stuffed replica?" Feeling tremendous relief, the soldier begins to smile.


"Of course, you idiot. Now gather up as much of the straw as you can so we can stuff it back into this ridiculous scarecrow!"


"Oh, Oh." exclaims the first soldier.


"Now what?"


"That stray dog is carrying away the clothing of the Great One."


"Well, run after him, you imbecile. We'll need that to carry out the rest of the ceremony."


"But, what about the crowd, the cameras, everyone saw everything."


"That's a problem for the ministry of the interior. They are like wizards -- able to make us see only what they wish. But, get after that dog or I'll kick you in the butt."

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      Dona 5 years ago

      This piece makes me visualize the whole circus as a Woody Allen movie. If the regime were not so brutal, we might laugh more wholeheartedly.

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