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Monday, February 23, 2009

SF Weekly Contest: Name That Harlequin Object!

Posted By on Mon, Feb 23, 2009 at 4:21 PM

click to enlarge Picasso, unlike Michela Alioto-Pier, thinks that a child can indeed be a 'harlequin object' - PABLO PICASSO
  • Pablo Picasso
  • Picasso, unlike Michela Alioto-Pier, thinks that a child can indeed be a 'harlequin object'

This week Supervisor Michela Alioto-Pier made a proposal that San Francisco "adopt the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and supporting its inalienable freedoms for children and youth in San Francisco."

The proposal, which includes stirring language about how "Children and youth are unique and invaluable to the human race as the continuum of our existence and livelihood" also specifically notes that a child is NOT a "harlequin object."

A what?

I'm familiar with Harlequin (the character from the Italian Commedia del'Arte) and Harlequin (the line of romance novels) ... but a "harlequin object"? I have no idea what that means.

So I called Alioto-Pier's staff and asked them to explain it to me. After a few minutes on hold, I was told they'd need to get back to me on that. 

Meanwhile, a Google search turned up zilch. 

Far be it from me to suggest that a supervisor put language she doesn't understand -- or that might not even be real -- into a proposed law, but while we're waiting for her office to explain itself, SF Weekly has decided that maybe the people should step in and help.

So here's your chance:  DEFINE A "HARLEQUIN OBJECT" in the comments section below, and explain how Alioto-Pier is right to say that a child isn't one. 

The best entry, as chosen by me and SF Weekly's online news editor, Joe Eskenazi, will win ... a Harlequin Object!  (laws permitting).  So name your own prize!

Photo of Pablo Picasso painting   |   Free Parking
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Benjamin Wachs

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