Pulse: Pursuits: Bastille Day

Frenching in Fairmount

If you happen to be near Eastern State Penitentiary on the 10th and you see buxom, bewigged galsone perched atop the prison, tossing snack cakes to the crowds belowyou’ve found Fairmount’s 16-year-old Bastille Day celebration, presided over by London Grill owner Terry McNally. While some amount of historical accuracy is observed (professional reenactors are brought in), there’s a good dose of Benny Hill-esque humor to the production. “We do a dress-like-Marie Antoinette contest, and there are lots of boobs. I’m very bustysome years they fall out,” McNally warns (promises?). If you think that’s scandalous, consider her next confession: Philly lore holds that it’s Tastykakes “Marie” pelts at the crowd. Alas, says McNally, “We ask Tastykake year after year, but they never come through.” Instead? “We use Twinkies. They’re cheaper, and like bullets.”