Thursday, May 10, 2012

Sylvester Stallone, A truly Historical Figure

I don't often get a chance to search the Yahoo! headlines for something to blog about on the History of Europe Podcast Blog because a) Yahoo! generally doesn't cover things of a historical nature and b) their writing is usually incomprehensibly poor. Only the comments deriding the poor grammatical structure that contain spelling and grammatical errors are more insufferable. But, I'll step down from my lofty and self-appointed elite status to borrow from them here today.

A 20 year old was touring the Holy See the other day and happened upon a humble painting by the Renaissance master Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino (I use his Italian name here so as not confuse anyone, lest the conjure the image of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, Raphael). The painting is of Pope  Gregory IX approving the Vatical Decretals dating from 1511. The painting is nice and everything, but our fantastic modern sensibilities have led us to notice, not the centerpiece of the painting Gregory IX, but an onlooker who strikingly resembles Sylvester Stallone (figure on the far left of the painting).

The obvious conclusion is that the Italian Stallion was about fifty years old in 1511 and got his big break into show biz through this painting. If we do the math, that would make Sly about 551 years old, meaning he looks pretty damn good for his age. However, he's still too old to be making action movies and it is likely that his decrepit façade in the second installment of The Expendables will invoke a mixture of horror and pity in our conscientious moviegoing public. The regular moviegoers however will lap it up and hit up the local Jim Dandy's, Friendly's or Big Boy's to order oversized portions of greasy foods after sitting through this affront to cinema. Ignorance may be bliss, but bliss may turn out to be overrated. Uh-oh, I think I've climbed back on to my unearned elitist's pedestal. Yep, I sure have. This rarefied air certainly is tastier than any Fishamajig. On the other hand, I do enjoy a trip to the local Shoney's for the Hot Fudge Cake. Even the culturally elite, such as myself enjoy slumming it for tasty treats every now and again.

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