I was waiting at a bar yesterday, and as much as you'd probably like
this blog to be about why, I'm afraid it's going to be about a sign I
saw while waiting. And not a sign like a bright white light or a rainbow
or anything, but an actual sign. This sign posted here. And since I was
waiting, I had plenty of time to contemplate the sign. On first glance,
it looks normal enough. An advertisement for Heineken Beer on a
mirrored background, with a Mollweide projection map of the earth etched
into it. (And yeah, I had to look up "Mollweide projection.")
But as I sat there, I began to notice things about this map. Strange things. Like for instance, Greenland doesn't run east-west. I know this for a fact. I fly over Greenland almost every week. And just look at Italy. I wouldn't be caught dead in boots like that. The most sinister thing in all this is the United States. Our continent of North America has morphed into a fat amorphous blob that quite frighteningly resembles most of us.
How hard would it have been to make the map look realistic? All of us have seen normal-looking Mollweide projection maps in classrooms across the country. (You can feel free to use "Mollweide projection maps" in a sentence this week, too.) Then I had the idea, maybe the folks at Heineken wanted to display the world view you get after consuming a little too much Heineken beer.
Here my husband helps me with my theory by handing me a factoid from history, a little quote: "God made the earth, but the Dutch made the Netherlands." And now a horrible, terrible thought creeps into my head. You see, the Dutch did make a lot of Holland by putting up all those levies and dykes and creating all that land, raising it right up (not far!) but raising it right up out of the North Sea. Maybe this map isn't as innocent as a beer ad. Maybe it's really the secret Dutch plan of world domination! They're going to install levies and dykes until they've created much larger continents to take over, or maybe at the very least, until no one wants to vacation in Cabo anymore. ( I mean, look at it.)
I think we need to keep a very close eye on those Dutch from now on. As a matter of fact, it probably wouldn't be a bad idea to keep an eye on those folks over at Heineken, either.