Tuesday, March 31, 2015

French Impressions

I took five years of French lessons, dreamt about getting lost in the Louvre, wrote a paper in high school about Georges Melies (in French!), and often fantasize about shopping in the Flea Markets of Paris. I can’t visit the real Lascaux caves, but I hope to see the reproduction caves someday. I want to visit a fromagerie and sample weird stinky cheeses, and hang out with the ex-pats (and make fun of the hipsters) at Shakespeare and Company.

This year’s "Vive La France" theme? I can get into it.

So it makes me a little sad to see other hobbyists complain about a lack of enthusiasm for this year’s BreyerFest. For a hobby that offers us so many creative and expressive possibilities, too many of us fall into the "princess/cowgirl" paradigm, too easily.

It’s good to venture out of your comfort zone once and a while! I promise I won't make you eat the cheese, if you don't want to.

The Parkour demonstration they just announced on the blog is a little bit out of mine. (I did not know it originated in France!) As possibly one of the world’s clumsiest humans, I find Parkour both fascinating and a little terrifying. Note: If you see me doing anything resembling Parkour in Kentucky, please call 911, because it’s likely an accident in progress.

I guess I should get to a little bit of actual Breyer/BreyerFest model horse talk now.

This year they’ve decided to not give us any hints or clues at all about the Surprise Special, named Quelle Surprise! ("What a Surprise!")
The name says it all. Another Surprise Special Run! We're not telling you anymore. It's a complete mystery! But you never know what you might get!
Most of the Surprise Specials have been somewhat tied to the theme, so I’ll go out on a limb and guess it’ll be something that can pass for a Selle Fran├žais. That brings to mind molds like Lonesome Glory, Giselle, the Show Jumping Warmblood, Newsworthy and possibly the Cleveland Bay. The SJW, Newsworthy, and Cleveland Bay have interchangeable manes and tails, something that they used to great effect with the Surprise Roxies a couple years back. That might be a point in their favor, I think.

The next actual reveal of another Special Run will be later this week, and it’s strongly hinted at that this one may be a Decorator:
This horse pays homage to a little village nestled in the northwest of France. It leaves quite the impression on everyone who visits. Some visitors go back time after time to see how the landscapes change throughout the seasons.
This one is a little easier to work with. The town in northwest France could be Giverny, home of both the Impressionist Museum, and of the artist Claude Monet’s famous gardens. So my guess is that we’re getting an Impressionist-themed Decorator - possibly a translucent like the Connoisseur Andalusian Swirling Sky?

My personal preference for this one would be the Cleveland Bay mold, who could make a passable Norman Cob - or Anglo-Norman, if they want to go historical with it. (If they passed him over as the Surprise Special. He can't be both, obviously.) This is Normandy, after all. That area of France is known for its Percherons also, so the Wixom mold is another strong candidate. Except for the Guest of Honor, there aren’t any other Drafts in the lineup yet. No Percherons at a French-themed BreyerFest? Inconceivable!

I was a bit annoyed in 2003 when they teased us with the Tie-Dyed Wixom on the Program cover: I was hoping she was a Special Run, but alas, she was an (unattainable) auction piece. Via Identify Your Breyer: http://www.identifyyourbreyer.com/images/bf2003lot22.jpg

Now imagine the same mold and concept, except in lavenders and greens? That could work!

1 comment:

Carrie said...

I'm just hoping they issue a pronunciation guide for all these French names!