Meet Jarramplas the harmless scapegoat

Jarramplas is a moe version of a devil who certain villagers pelt with vegetables every year to exorcise evil in Spain. Don’t you feel a bit sorry for the guy who dresses up and walks down the street, willingly sacrificing his body for some greater good? He’s the real victim here.

jarramplas potato war.jpg

How might this scapegoat tradition might have started centuries ago? Perhaps once upon a primitive time there was a little misunderstood autist who liked to sit by himself and play on his drum. One day some mean kids threw vegetables at him, and when the villagers asked them for an explanation, they said he had been possessed by an evil spirit and they did it to banish the devil in him. The villagers agreed it was for the best, and decided to pummel the boy with turnips to finish off the boy. Thus, death or banishment under a canopy of flying turnips became a local tradition for getting rid of undesirables.
Today, the reason for the tradition has been forgotten so I’m free to speculate. But it’s a fact that hundreds of Spaniards still gather annually to throw snowballs, potatoes or turnips at a live effigy of someone or something, all to feel a little better about themselves.

Armor or not, pitching that many vegetables will leave some bruises.

“However the tradition was started, it is generally believed to symbolise the expulsion of everything evil.” – IBT news

I’m pretty sure the character of Satan evolved to fill similar needs in western canon.


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