God has a message for me

I like to read the religious books while I’m waiting for my birth control at the pharmacy. I found this today.

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Ye Olde Slashe Shippes: Þrymskviða

If you’re a fan of the new Thor movies, you might have heard that the original legends are… weird. Like, really weird. John Waters weird. This was not my field, so I am only dimly aware of what is going on here thematically, but I do know that this story is a prime example of the Norse gods’ proclivity towards gender-bending magic and ultraviolence.

This particular story comes from the Poetic Edda, one of the better preserved collections of Norse mythology. We can’t tell for certain when this particular tale was first told, because the manuscript is a collection of uncited work recorded from an older oral tradition. Some scholars will tell you it’s a legit pagan story, others contend that it’s an over-the-top Christian parody of these heathen gods.

Thor wakes up and realizes that he’s lost his hammer Mjölnir, so he goes to Loki for help. Loki flies off to the realm of the giants, where the thieving Thrym has hidden Thor’s hammer out of reach underground. Thrym wants to marry Freyja, the babeliest of the gods, and he offers to trade her for the hammer.

Loki returns to the realm of the gods. He and Thor are perfectly content to make the trade, but Freyja doesn’t think so highly of the idea:

Wrathful was Freyja, | and fiercely she snorted,
And the dwelling great | of the gods was shaken,
And burst was the mighty | Brisings’ necklace (source)
 

Heimdal comes up with the idea of having Thor, not Freyja, be presented as the bride:

“Bind we on Thor | the bridal veil,
Let him bear the mighty | Brisings’ necklace;”
 
thor gets dressed up
Dress him up as a pretty princess, is what I’m saying. (source)

 

Thor isn’t too keen on this idea, but Loki talks him into it; Mjölnir is such a powerful weapon that the giants could take over the realm of the gods if Thor doesn’t man up and put on that dress. So he gets gussied up, and off they go to the realm of the giants for the wedding:

Then bound they on Thor | the bridal veil,
And next the mighty | Brisings’ necklace.
Keys around him | let they rattle,
And down to his knees | hung woman’s dress;
With gems full broad | upon his breast,
And a pretty cap | to crown his head.
Then Loki spake, | the son of Laufey:
“As thy maid-servant thither | I go with thee;
We two shall haste | to the giants’ home.”
 

Yeah, Loki’s getting in on this cross-dressing action too.

thor and loki

Oh yeah, this is definitely gonna work (source)
 

Thor makes a fool of himself at the wedding by drinking an enormous amount of mead and eating, among other things, an entire ox and eight salmon. Loki is forced to make excuses for him, and things get dicey when Thrym decides to look under the veil:

Thrym looked ‘neath the veil, | for he longed to kiss,
But back he leaped | the length of the hall:
“Why are so fearful | the eyes of Freyja?
Fire, methinks, | from her eyes burns forth.”
Hard by there sat | the serving-maid wise,
So well she answered | the giant’s words:
“No sleep has Freyja | for eight nights found,
So hot was her longing | for Jotunheim.”
 

Nice save, Loki. Thrym brings Mjölnir out as part of the ceremony. Thor grabs the hammer and kills his husband-to-be, followed by all the other giants in the hall. That’s it, folks: don’t steal from the gods, because you’ll be killed by angry drag queens. Let’s see if that story makes it into The Avengers 2.

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Tune in next week for a story about a very pretty pony.
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The man-child’s fairy godmother

fairy godmother

Oh, my poor sweet man-child! I understand, my darling. Although you have the body and presumably all the functional capabilities of an adult, inside you beats the heart of a boy. Such wonder are you capable of! Nay, the adult world is too cruel for one such as you.

Come, let us journey far away from this place, full of tyrants who expect you to do things like shower regularly and wash the dishes. Rent? More like debt slavery. You are as pure as the first snow of winter, my sweet adult-bodied child. Such mundane concerts will only sully your perfect spirit.

And the women of this mortal realm, they are far too cruel to be borne. You are a delicate flower, so fresh and fragile. If only they would appreciate your unique beauty! But no, they seek only to cut and to crush you. Come away with me to a land where there are only girlfriends and mothers, and all the girlfriends are like mothers, so that you may go from the cradle to the grave without once buying your own underwear.

Just kidding, asshole. You’re pushing thirty, put on your big boy pants and take out the trash.

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Podcasting

I recorded an episode for Isaac’s podcast. Now the world knows his secret: he really likes Star Wars.

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PS: There are at least 5 different systems of Japanese romanization, all of which mark vowel sounds differently. I didn’t learn that until I had finished recording, whoops. Please don’t use this episode as a pronunciation guide.

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