Breaking Bread: A Mythology Major’s Musings on Culture, Gender, and Baked Goods

I decided to try my hands at soda bread this week, since I didn’t know what else to do for St. Patrick’s Day, except my yearly rant about all the things we get wrong about St. Patrick’s Day, how St. Patrick wasn’t even Irish, how nobody in America seems to know the Republic of Ireland from Northern Ireland or even Ireland from Scotland, and how St. Brigid was more important for most of Irish history anyway. I vote we all get together on St. Brigid’s Feast Day and eat butter. Lots of butter. So much butter.

But I’m really tired of harping on that every year. So, instead, I put on my Irish/Irish American folk music Pandora station and press-ganged my boyfriend into helping me make soda bread. Continue reading

Advertisements

Stone Soup #2: Greek Green Goddess Soup

Over the holidays I obtained a crockpot. Remember that awesome feeling when you were a kid and you got that awesome thing that made everything aweseome forever? I am not afraid to admit that’s how I feel about this crockpot. As I said in the last Stone Soup, I like making soup because it is a healthy way to get salt and veggies and I can hoard it like a dragon playing disability roulette and not worrry about making food on days when standing is hard. However, when making soup on the stovetop, I usually end up on the kitchen floor approximately 1-3 times. The crockpot allows me to throw everything in (just when I would normally have to take a break anyway) and not deal with food again for several hours. Continue reading

The Invisible Man: speculative fiction and disability

That’s how we roll in sci-fi.

I don’t know if any of you have seen the infographic floating around about representation in science fiction movies or not, but I wanted to talk about an issue I had with it, namely what constitutes a “protagonist with a disability”. I won’t post a link to the infographic here because my intention is not to call it or its creator out. In fact, I applaud them for raising awareness of representation issues. However, I am bothered by the infographic’s problematic take on this specific issue, as well as by this discussion in general (which seems to happen every few years when there is a renewed controversy over Barbara Gordon). Continue reading

Stone Soup #1: An Inexact Recipe and a Mythology Major Overthinking Soup

Can you cook with all the colors of the farmstand?

Can you cook with all the colors of the farmstand?

If you don’t want to read all of my pseudo-anthropologically-minded ramblings, feel free to scroll down to the actual soup.

A Mythology Major Otherthinking Soup

I grew up in a UU Church where On the Day You Were Born and Stone Soup were childhood staples used in sermons themselves, a shared community mattered much more than a shared creed, and food and fellowship went hand in hand with worship. Holy day rituals were followed by a potluck and a bardic circle. Continue reading

When A Hero Comes Home

A soldier returns home from battle but has brought the war with him. He stares off into the distance, unable to take joy in his family or friends, still hyperalert to threats he no longer faces. Unable to heal his invisible wound, he takes his own life.

This isn’t a tragic news story about a veteran coming back from Afghanistan with a case of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It’s a summary of the Greek play “Ajax,” which is more than 2,000 years old (“Ancient warrior myths help veterans fight PTSD“).

Since I touched on PTSD in the classics in the last post and it is Memorial Day, it seemed only right to share this article I stumbled upon about how ancient myths, plays, and literary works are helping veterans heal, cope, and transition after coming home from war. I actually studied this at length in school, particularly in several epic literature classes, a class on genocide and reconciliation, a class on Ancient Ireland, and a class on combat trauma and how it relates to Ancient Greek theatre, most of them taught by Professor Robert Meagher of Hampshire College, who specializes in this (among other things). Continue reading

Salt of the Earth

You may be wondering what “salt and iron” means or why health is listed alongside mythology and writing. What does salt have to do with writing? What does health have to do with mythology? Well, a great deal actually. Continue reading