When you have a greased pole competition, there's two ways you can do it
- with lawyers or without.
The greased pole competition in Finike Festival is a lawyer-free
competition. Take a look at all people standing at the base of the
telephone pole; there's not a lawyer in sight.
If this competition was being held in America, the
crowd at the base of the pole would be nothing but lawyers. There
would hardly be enough room for the competitors to get to the pole, because
the lawyers would all be trying to sign them up for a lawsuit, just in case
they hurt themselves as they ran up the greased pole.
I personally would like to see a competition where they make lawyers run up
the pole. Oops. I didn't say that.
The greased pole is a full sized telephone pole angled up thirty degrees into
the air. They build a sand bag ramp at the base of the pole and
coat the pole from one end to the other with a gallon of thick gooey grease.
Then the fun begins.
How do you win the competition? Simple. You run up the pole
and grab the Turkish Flag at the top before you fall off. The winner
gets more than just a flag, he also gets money and other prizes.
Although the grease pole competition may look simple, it wasn't easy.
It took more than an hour of slipping, sliding, and falling to capture the flag.
There were arms, legs, and bodies flying everywhere. More than one
person ended up in a painful embrace with the greased pole between their
legs raising questions about whether they still had the ability to have
children.. No part of
the competitors anatomy was safe when they fell. Some greased warriors
did the splits on their way up the pole. Doing the splits is bad form
and hurts big time.
Running straight up the pole is the recipe for failure. Both your
feet and the pole are too narrow for such a direct approach. The
competitors who did best where those who turned their feet sideways during
their run to glory. The sideways approach gave their feet a larger arc
of contact with the slippery pole; this approach didn't guarantee success,
but it helped push the odds in their favor.
Since the pole stuck out over the water, competitors had a soft
landing when they fell off. Except for damage to inflated
egos, there were no serious injuries reported during the competition.
Of all the places I visited in the Med, I liked Turkey the best.
The Turkish people don't take themselves too seriously, and they know how to
have fun without spending a thousand dollars. They are unpretentious,
and are at least as interested in me as they are in my wallet. Turkey
is a five star destination in a five star life.
As long as you don't have to run up greased poles to earn
your living, life
in Turkey is good.