Recall the story of the princess and the pea.
An unsuspecting girl is challenged to prove her elite status by identifying an almost insignificant object through dozens of feet of down, cloth, and upholstery.
Consider the stupidity of the test. A young and most likely naive girl-child is pleasantly told “good night” and left to stare at the mountain of bed that is before her and must now conceive of a way to climb to the top to sleep? Once this idea is thoroughly dissected, ask yourself this: why would a small and inexperienced woman, who probably had never climbed more than a stair at a time in her life, why would she even think to tackle this monstrosity? Besides for the almost certain fall followed by death should she move just the slightest bit too far as she sighs in her sleep…and the high likelihood that she could slip on the way up, and break her fall (quite literally) on her leg or arm or snap her neck.
What a charming story to tell our children.
Smart girl that she is, this princess, she spends the night in a stiff chair by the window rather than climb up, to avoid probable injury and possible death. Sensible thing to do, no? Daylight comes and she is awakened by the delighted cries of the royal court for having passed the test. Certainly she must have felt the tiny pea through the dozen thick mattresses, and now through her proven delicacy she must be a princess! How lovely, for now she can marry the prince. Poor girl is sore from sleeping in a chair for a few hours and most likely wants nothing to do with this prince and his tall, acrobatic beds.
It’s a wonder people even got married in those days.