The medieval world had no patience for giants. Heroes of epic would send them to Hell; Thor, ever sporty, would hunt them for fun; in chivalric romance, knights smote them with glee. From Yvain to King Arthur to Bevis of Hampton, medieval heroes made giants extinct—except for one holdout, who fled from oppression, and napped on the outskirts of Washington, D.C.
Here in the District, we’re losing our giant. I went out this weekend to bid him adieu and was pretty surprised: he’d attracted a crowd. Strangers sat in his palm, children slid down his knee, and adults tapped his forehead and peered up his nose. In a city of pipsqueaks who long to be giants, that’s no way to send off the last of his kind.