Comfortably Mum, ~or~ The Creepiest Part of The Met That You Probably Never Noticed
Everyone knows The Met. Right?
The Metropolitan Museum of Art is like, REQUIRED VIEWING for anyone even fleetingly passing through New York City. And if you live here, and don’t go at least once a year, they take away your NYC status. Ever wonder if the turnstiles are smacking you in the crotch and making you “swipe again” on purpose? Well, ask yourself “when was the last time I went to the Met?” Are the two related? Maybe. Maybe. True story: one time I dated a guy who lived three blocks from the Met, and when he was out of town, he gave me keys to his studio apartment to house-sit, and I went to the Met like nonstop. If you’re a NYC resident, it’s still “pay what you will,” you just have to tell them your zip code as proof! The Met is the most fun you’ll have in New York for a single dollar. Yes, I’ll go on record saying that The Met is more satisfying than a single plain slice of 2 Bros!
There is something … unsettling … about the Met.
The Met is known for having that dope-ass section of Egyptian art and artifacts that leads to the corner of the building that is home to the Temple of Dendur. Everybody’s been to the Temple of Dendur, you know the one I’m talking about! It’s huge, you like, can’t miss it.
just before you get to the Temple of Dendur, there’s a room full of mummies. I assume there’s mummies in there: there’s the mummy caskets (sarcophagus? sarcophagi? I should have paid more attention to the exhibit) but I was distracted by the little dial inside the glass case housing the mummies which is, apparently, a comfort indicator.
An indicator of comfort.
COMFORT, PORQUOI?!? Because I may not know a lot about mummies (or sarcophaguses) but the one thing I’m pretty sure that I do know is that mummies are dead. DEAD. Like, long dead. Like, the essential quality of a mummy being that there’s a person inside, and they’re dead.
Which leads me to question why the Met is invested in keeping an allegedly dead person comfortable???
So another thing I seem to remember about mummies, and correct me if I’m wrong, is that they were deliberately entombed in such a way as to keep them happy in order to someday come back to life, in some form. That’s why they were buried with extra clothes, and their favorite personal items, and blue hippo statues (see: “William“).
THEREFORE, the Comfort Indicator is an indication that we’re still concerned about the mummies needing to be kept comfortable. You know. FOR WHEN THEY COME BACK TO LIFE. Or, just in CASE they come back to life, and need to look fresh and well-rested to attend a high school dance at The Bronze (see: “Inca Mummy Girl“). And what do the numbers even mean? Is this some kind of “Sleep Number” situation for dead people???
Next time you’re at the Met, promise me — promise me you will go to the room full of mummies and tell me if this isn’t just the tiniest bit unnerving. Look, OBVIOUSLY, nobody wants their mummy to be uncomfortable. But personally, I subscribe to the “What’s Dead Ought To Stay Dead” (unless it’s referring to the scrunchie trend, which I am proud to have revived). But I also don’t want any mummies angry with me. Tell me: is it just me, or is this TOTALLY CREEPY???