These goats live in a small region in southwestern Morocco where the Argan tree grows. Although the region is semi-arid desert and there’s fodder elsewhere, they love argan berries. They’re goat candy. Since the goats can’t reach them from the ground, they learned to climb Argan trees.
But that’s not the weird part.
When the goats poop, local women pick out the hard undigested nuts, crack them, extract the seeds, mash and grind them up, and produce argan oil – all by hand. It gets stranger: only women are allowed to do it.
Women […] run the entire industry, which is an incredible fact considering that Morocco is a rather patriarchal society. Only women are taught to make argan oil, and they are the sole gatekeepers to the centuries-old method. Much of the country’s oil is made in cooperatives that allow women the opportunity to work and make money independently [via].
Then they rub it on their faces, put it in their hair or eat it. TRUE.
But take this story a step further, and it becomes downright astounding. One sunny day, hundreds of years ago, some Berber women figured it out:
“Hey, Fatima! Bouchra! I found some goat crap under a tree. I bet there’s something in it that we can eat AND wear. Whaddya think? Don’t tell the guys.”
And the rest is history. But wait. There’s more:
The Berbers were the same people that produced Berber carpets, and had a hand in producing purple dye from seashells – the color of Roman Royalty. It’s also interesting to note that a large percentage of Berbers were Jews, Christians and Animists before those sects were marginalized by Islam in the 7th Century. The Barbary pirates were Islamic Berbers, thrived in the world-wide slave trade, and the word “barbarian” has etymological roots to the Berbers as well.
Goats-trees-berries-poop-cosmetics-food-Morocco-Berbers-carpet-purple-Islam-pirates-slavery-barbarians. What a connection, and it all began with Goats In Trees.
Fun Facts To Know And Tell.
Martha’s Birthday Party. This is by the same guy behind The Perry Bible Fellowship.
“Bury Me Beneath the Willow” performed live at MerleFest 2002 by Doc Watson, Sara Watkins, Chris Thile, Sean Watkins & Byron House. The song is an old traditional that likely originated in the 1800s. From The Mudcat Cafe, commenter “Stewie” posted this:
Meade’s earliest printed citation for this is Sandburg’s ‘American Songbag’ (1927), the same year as the Carter Family’s recording and 4 years after the first recording by Henry Whitter in 1923. Other recordings earlier than the Carters were: Ernest Thompson (1924), George Reneau (1925), Kelly Harrell (1926), Ernest Stoneman (1926), Burnett & Rutherford (1926) and Holland Puckett (1927). [Info from Meade et alia ‘Country Music Sources’ p 197.]
Very cool. You can hear the Carter Family’s version here.
That’s a wrap for this Saturday Matinee, and have a great weekend.
This has been sitting around for a while in our What To Do With Box, and although I’m sure I posted it elsewhere, it’s still in my list of top flicks to see.
It’s got everything you want in an action movie: a pretty oriental nurse with a threatening heart-stopping hypodermic needle, cows and albino goats, snow and subtitles. Once I find out where it’s showing, you’ll be the first to know.