December 30, 2003

To Gnome Me Is to Love Me

Yesterday, I heard a story on the radio reported by the BBC in which they described recent actions of the Garden Gnome Liberation Front (GGLF) in France. I found this intriguing and became curious as to the prevalence of garden gnomes throughout the world.

In a simple search of ‘garden gnomes’ on Google, I was inundated withresults – somewhere around 73,000 to be exact. Digging deeper, it seems that the garden gnome phenomenon was started in Germany and gradually swept throughout Europe becoming especially popular in the United Kingdom. Surprising to me was their evident popularity in North America as well.

So what is this vast subculture of gnome enthusiasts like? What are we, the non-gnome loving heathens of the world missing out on?

If you’re in the UK, you can visit the Gnome Reserve. For a small chunk of change, you can frolic with garden gnomes of all shapes and sizes. And, as they mention on their Web site

Gnome hats are loaned free of charge together with fishing rods, so you don’t embarrass the gnomes!

I’m glad they’re concerned about their feelings!

If you live in the States, you can always join Free The Gnomes. In their own words:

Thousands of Gnomes are enslaved in Gardens across America. For too long we have let our neighbors usurp the rights of these gentle woodland creatures. Join our boycott. Organize a picket demonstration. Write to Congress. Free a Gnome. We'll show you how.

Now, if that doesn’t inspire action, I don’t know what does. And if you’ve already joined the movement and want to show sympathy for the gnomes buy a gnome hat, lunchbox, bag or even a thong!

For those who harbor ill-will for the garden gnome, you’ll be happy to know that there’s a place out there for you as well. Tired of the Gnome Reserve-attending pacifists? Try Die Screaming With Sharp Things In Your Head, a site devoted to impaling garden gnomes…and you can buy a thong there too.

Posted by Chris at December 30, 2003 10:20 AM

Ah yes I heard about the whole gnome freeing business from my boyfriend when I first met him. We've often thought of taking someones gnome and doing the whole thing of taking pictures of it in different places and sending it to their houses. We would, of course return the gnome, possibly with a souvineir :-D

Posted by: Irma at December 30, 2003 1:35 PM

Saw this in my local movie theater: Where's My Gnome?

He isn't a liberator, he is the victim of one :)

Posted by: Alicia at December 30, 2003 2:33 PM

I heard this story on NPR last night... amazing... LOL.
I couldn't exactly figure out why they were kidnapping the Gnomes... LOL I laughed when they said the pastor found them on the church steps. Someone is creative...

Posted by: Rachel in Alaska at December 30, 2003 8:36 PM

Well, we definitely learn something new every day. "Free the Gnomes" huh? I wish I had my own yard, just so I could put one in there and hope that someone stole it and sent me pictures! That would be the funniest thing ever. :) There was some movie I saw this year where the main character did that to a statue in her father's garden (I think it was "Amelie" if I'm not mistaken), but I had never heard of other people doing that.

Posted by: Zandria at December 31, 2003 2:15 PM

I tried to post this comment 4 times yesterday but my computer crashed. That's not good right?

Anyway... I wanted to say:

Don't for get about Gnomar and Friends!

Posted by: katherine at December 31, 2003 2:25 PM

Well, if someone ends up sending me pics of mine in Egypt or something, I suppose I would have to forgive them.

Just as long as it wasn't just some drunk mouth-breather doing it for the hell of it.

Posted by: gesikah at February 4, 2004 9:27 AM

Perhaps I should be bringing my gnomes in for the evening instead of making them slave in my garden all night???

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Posted by: Harriett31Bruce at May 13, 2010 1:43 PM