Angel with a sponge mop

Handwritten page of a diary dated April 20, 1982

the three of us were staring up for so long that other people started to gather. Maybe they thought there was something in the sky because most people don’t stare this long at a statue.

I read this out loud from the inscription: “potaverunt me aceto” and one of the Italian guys, Luigi, says it means “they gave me vinegar to drink” which still doesn’t make it make any sense to us. So I tell him we think it looks like the angel is holding a sponge mop. He says he doesn’t know. He just sees the statue every day on his way to work, and never gave it much thought. In Italian, he asks the other people standing there. He tells me someone said it’s a Bible verse. “They gave me vinegar.” It’s in Psalms.

But I ask him to ask them what drinking vinegar has to do with holding a sponge mop. He does. Then he says nobody can explain. But they don’t move along on their way. They just stand there with us staring at the statue.

Then we start talking about food, and Luigi translates for us. Then almost everyone who was standing there ends up eating lunch together at a place nearby.

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Original image: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Angel_Ponte_Sant_Angelo_sponge.jpg
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Published in: on September 24, 2010 at 4:30 am  Comments (2)