Fun fact: every year in Gloucester, a cheese rolling festival takes place at which grown adults chase 9lb wheels of cheese down a hill.
Ridiculous, eh? Grow up Gloucester.
However, when the whole nation decides to gather around a fire and shoot explosives into the air whilst very creepily watching a man-sized voodoo doll get incinerated, that’s totally cool.
Yes – this is bonfire night, bringing out the patriotic pyromaniac in all of us since 1605. It’s all a bit weird really, but even if you don’t give two Fawkes about gunpowder, treason and plot, it’s still a good excuse for a quality evening. Here’s our definitive guide to bonfire night:
First things first, know your history
Have you ever wondered why Mr. Fawkes wanted to blow up parliament? We should do, considering how happy we are to celebrate his state sanctioned torture and execution.
Answer: He wasn’t happy with the oppressive reign of King James I.
In fairness, that sounds like a legit reason. Oh. Forget we said anything. BURN THE GUY!
Don’t make your own bonfire
If you do this, you’re begging for an underwhelming evening. Bonfires are breathtaking when they’re massive, but when you’ve got a pitiful three-log mini-inferno smoking away in your back garden, it doesn’t quite have the same effect. You’re best off going to the community bonfire.
Similarly, don’t buy your own fireworks
Unless you actually are miffed enough at Guy Fawkes to want to spend £500 on the ultra-extreme-dragonfire-mega-starlight firework pack, stick to the community bonfire. They’ll likely have a decent firework show on, which will definitely beat the 8 sparklers and faulty catherine wheel setup you’ve got at home.
If you do stay at home for a private bonfire night…
… don’t let your Ed Sheeran wannabe mate bring his guitar along. People like that see fire and immediately think ‘2 hour intimate guitar concierto’.
Be warned – if this happens, be prepared to cringe as they start tearing up during their 6 minute rendition of Jeff Buckley’s ‘Hallelujah’.
Let dad have his moment
We know you understand basic firework safety, but the chances are your dad is still under the impression that he’s the resident grand master of flame. Even though it’s an adorable mindset he picked up whilst you were a feeble child, when he nobly insists that he should light the fireworks, let him – he’s probably been waiting for it all year.
Re-evaluate Parkin cake
There’s a reason we don’t really eat this at any other point in the year.
It’s bland tasting, and usually rock hard. Think people! No one is forcing us to eat this, and it’s totally not worth the calories.
While we’re at it, re-evaluate treacle toffee
Why don’t we eat this at any other point in the year?
It’s delightful, and it’s absurd that we have to wait for this dead guy’s anniversary to be able to gorge on it. Life is funny sometimes.
Dress warmly, and you’ll be able to admire the fire from afar at a comfortable temperature.
Don’t dress warmly, and you’ll have to spend the whole night hovering within the golden margin of distance from the fire that allows you to warm your body adequately without setting yourself ablaze.
This is so obvious it’s insulting, but if you’re planning on boozing it up, be careful around the fire. Don’t fall into it, or play with it, or anything. After all, it is fire. You know, that stuff that burns your flesh if you touch it? Yeah, you get the point – fire isn’t good for your skin. At all.
Have a good time!
All political misgivings and weak traditional snacks aside, bonfire night is awesome for one main reason – fire! There’s something primally exciting about chilling out around a fire, and fireworks are just – well they’re exploding balls of colorful light, what is better than that, really?
Oh, and you get to spend quality time with friends and family, which we suppose is cool too.
So that brings our definitive guide to bonfire night to a close. We hope you found it useful, and now that we’ve told you to stop messing around with rubbish old Parkin cake, might we suggest you grab some proper belly warming food at Revolution?
We’ve just released a new menu chock full of food that, unlike Parkin cake, is actually really nice and totally worth your time. Don’t believe us? Check it out for yourself.