Knowles: not very happyKnowles: not very happyWinter must bring out the silly immaturity in us all. First we had the rather explicit Christmas Tree, and now, with recent weather conditions, it's time for some snow sculpturey.

Poor (literally, he's one of those penniless history students) John Knowles figured it'd be rather funny to eschew the classic snowman design and make a frozen version of men's bits. He managed a 4 foot phallus, later described as "very intricately made", much to the amusement of passers-by. Unfortunately the police were less amused.

New Windsor's versionNew Windsor's versionA policeman was driving past the unfortunately-named plot of land known as "Parker's Piece". Being concerned that future passers-by might get upset he dragged John off to the police station. Down there, he not only ordered John to knock it down, but whipped out the Public Order Act's section 5 (you're guilty of an offence if you "display any writing, sign or other visible representation which is threatening, abusive or insulting, thereby causing that or another person harassment, alarm or distress") to give him a ticket with the words "making a 4ft phallic symbol out of snow" on complete with an £80 fine. Oops.

John, although a little disgruntled, seemed to take it reasonably well, saying "I don't have a job and to me £80 is a lot of money, so although the officer may have just been doing his job, I'm not particularly happy about it."

Harvard's attemptThis isn't the first incident of a snow penis causing legal trouble to the point of making the news. A couple of years ago one was destroyed by the police in New Windsor - although there it seems they did actually get some complaints about it. No other charges were brought, and the police even seem quite bashful being quoted as saying "We probably weren't 100 percent correct in going on the property and knocking it down...but our intentions were pure". Another member of the cop shop worried that "Now we're going to get snow penises popping up all over town".

Even the intellectuals aren't immune. Harvard students built a NINE foot version 4 years ago yesterday, leading to great debates even within the hallowed tomes of the Economist magazine. Being the intelligentsia of the day though the complaints were more along the lines of "The ice sculpture was erected in a public space, one that should be free from menacing reminders of women's sexual vulnerability".

PS: The Poorhouse noticed a high incidence of derivations of the word "erect" during the so-called research for this article. It seems even journalists have the smutty mentality of 12 year olds.


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