Midnight Meeting at The Met

You remember how Edward digs men's digs, right? Well, turns out he knows a thing or two about women's fashion, as well. He said he'd pay anybody's way that "met" up with him on Fifth Avenue and 82nd Street to see one of the most popular exhibits in New York's history. A few of the Troopers agreed. Roman and Algernon went with him to be finish-line judges for the racing duel between Black Jack and Penny.

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After the squabble about the tie between the Troop's two most competitive birds, they made their way to their destination: The Metropolitan Museum of Art—also known by its nickname: "The Met." Edward explained a sad tale about the talented man whose work they were going to see, Alexander McQueen. "Sometimes," Roman replied, "art is sad and beautiful."

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The atrium was buzzing with people intent on seeing Mr McQueen's show, Savage Beauty. The waiting time was listed for 2.5 hours! Just when they were about to turn around (even though Edward and Roman would have stayed), they were approached by a beautiful and elegant yellow bird. "Hello. My name is Sophia Carmella and I can get you to the front of the line." The boys gulped, stared and nodded in silence. Penny stifled a laugh.

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Roman asked Sophia to stop before they entered so he could pose with the Rodin. "I've always wanted to be The Walking Man," he confessed. "You wear bronze well, Mr Times," Sophia admitted, "If I didn't know better, I would think you were a Burgher." "Yeah," said Black Jack, "he's a real Big Mac."

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THE WALKING MAN by RODIN

After they visited Savage Beauty, they discussed the paradox of calling something "savage" and "beautiful." This prompted Sophia to take them to the sculpture courtyard where all was dark, quiet and after hours. With a golden voice, she told them tales about Sappho—one of the world's great lyric poets. "Some would say it was savage that women were rarely recognized for their extraordinary gifts or that her poetry is all but lost. How can something so beautiful be forgotten?"

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SAPPHO by COMTE PROSPER D'EPINAY

Did you know that this face was cut from stone? Did you know the stone is marble and that it comes from a place in France called Saint-Béat?

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DETAIL from UGOLINO AND HIS SONS by JEAN-BAPTISTE CARPEUX

Some people believe a famous sculptor said: Every block of stone has a statue inside of it.

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DETAIL from UGOLINO AND HIS SONS by JEAN-BAPTISTE CARPEUX

Sometimes beautiful things take time to create. Sometimes rocky things end up being the most delicate. Sometimes patience and determination can create something miraculous.

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DETAIL from UGOLINO AND HIS SONS by JEAN-BAPTISTE CARPEUX

The girls tip-toed onto the shoulder of the goddess of beauty. "Venus really was a savage beauty—" whispered Sophia. "Although she was beautiful, she was rebellious and quick to judge. Too bad she didn't realize beauty is more than skin deep."

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VENUS by ANTONIO CANOVA

Sometimes beautiful things cause people to act savagely. "Paris started a war and launched 1,000 ships to abduct a beautiful woman," remarked Sophia. "Beauty can blind us to reason if we aren't watchful."

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PARIS by ANTONIO CANOVA

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VASE WITH THE ATTRIBUTES OF AUTUMN by NICOLAS-SEBASTIAN ADAM

Sophia's stories went on for hours, past midnight, atop an autumnal vase.  She taught the Troop about great myths, legends and histories that served as the backbone to many of the world's most significant works of art. An ever-listening Algernon quietly stated, "It seems that art is simply story-telling with chisels and paint and thread."

In the dark halls of The Met, Sophia brought her stories to a close with an intriguing last-thought: "If you really want to know the great secret to great art," she softly whispered to the spellbound Troop, "Identify something sad or unfortunate that has happened in your life and make something beautiful out of it."

Invigorated and enlightened from a long day at The Met, the Troop took their time flying home with a new acquisition for their jolly collection: an elegant, yellow bird with a knack for story-telling.