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Thursday, September 10, 2009

Ginger group

The BBC report on a weekend to mark all things ginger, paid for by the local government in Breda, a city in the south east of the Netherlands. This is the fifth year this event has been held and it attracted 3,000 redheads and 7,000 non-ginger spectators:

But the initiative is firmly with the redheads. And there is much common ground. Men and women sporting a spectrum of ginger, from strawberry blonde to rich ochre, swap stories of being picked on in the playground, discrimination in the wider world - a family in Newcastle claimed they were driven from their home because of anti-ginger abuse in 2007 - and the whys and wherefores of raising a ginger brood.

Walking round the city, redheads smile and laugh with one another. Since this is a celebration of gingerism, an army of hairdressers, makeup artists and cameramen have been drafted in to prepare for the fashion shoot, treating redheads like celebrities. The dermatologist's class - redheads tend to have very fair skin - is so popular it has to move to the main part of Breda's cathedral to accommodate all those who want to attend.

Mr Rouwenhorst marvels at the innate connection between members of one of the most genetically distinctive yet disparate groups in the world.

"When people come together as redheads, they just look at each other," he says. "They have a certain bond. And I think this whole event will some day expand to multiple events, maybe across the world. I think the ginger community will start."

I like a man with ambition.
I wonder if there's any genetic advantage to being Ginger?
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