video Vikings, Fertility Day and Protein Pancakes

Books, TV, podcasts, food and online intrigue! This week I’m into Viking lore and Norse mythology. Plus a photo and recipe for yummy protein pancakes and an overview of how a weird fertility day campaign and a new Charlie Hebdo comic is causing anger in Italy.

Watching

We just finished Vikings season three (the last one available on the all-powerful Netflix). Note: minor spoilers ahead.

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Things I like: Lagertha, French Princess, the music(!), general ambiance, historical accuracy(ishness). Did I mention Lagertha? Also, the braids.

Things I don’t like: Why is Aslaug so lame? Why can’t both she and Lagertha both be super cool ladies? Ragnar is becoming a total dick. This whole Bjorn/Porunn storyline…all this drama around a scar on a badass shield maiden’s face is pretty lame. Lagertha should probably step in here and school her son a bit.

Overall, Vikings is a really solid show, good acting, very decent dialogue, and while it does start to become (in my opinion) a bit overblown as the budget grows in Season 3, it is still really entertaining and enjoyable. In fact, I think Game of Thrones has a lot to learn from how they handle things such as female characters and sexual violence.

Listening

There is a definite theme here. I have been listening to the Myths and Legends podcast to brush up on my Viking lore and Norse mythology (also because it is an awesome podcast). Recently, we listened to the legend of Ragnar Lodbrok. What I learned is this: 1) Lagertha should be way more badass; 2) Aslaug should be way more badass; 3) I hope Ivar the boneless in Vikings grows up to become as creepily maniacal as he is in the story.

Reading

I said there was a theme (thanks, obsessive personality). I am halfway through The Viking Spirit by Daniel McCoy. So far it has been an awesome overview of Norse religion and spiritual practices and now I have reached the part of the book where we start on the myths. After many years of trying to struggle through really dry and poorly written anthologies of Norse mythology, this one is pretty awesome. I fully endorse this description of the book:

The Viking Spirit is an introduction to Norse mythology like no other. As you’d expect from Daniel McCoy, the creator of the enduringly popular website Norse Mythology for Smart People (Norse-Mythology.org), it’s written to scholarly standards, but in a simple, clear, and entertaining style that’s easy to understand and a pleasure to read.

Eating

My husband makes the best protein pancakes ever. I have never made them but he says the recipe is simple: two eggs, one banana, stick in a blender with oats until it’s thick.

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What are we mad about

This is a pretty good example of things I do and don’t like about the internet rage-train. Sometimes I find anger to be a constructive first step towards action (raising awareness and coming together as a group to realize we aren’t alone in our very powerful frustrations about things that aren’t quite right in our society world whatever). Other times people just seem to jump onto the train without a second thought.

Rage-train I like: Italian ladies are mad about fertility day, in which the Italian government has tried to convince us that we are not doing our sacred duty for the nation by procreating like bunnies. Basically we got a finger wagging about worrying too much about less important things like career, travel, personal happiness, oh yeah and trying to pay the bills and feed ourselves. I’m pretty happy about the rage on this one because the anger has gone international and caused the Italian government to take a step back to re-think this really shabby campaign. The PM has even said some things: A) that he didn’t sign off on this campaign and B) that we should probably worry about improving the economy and reducing unemployment if we want people to have babies. Oh really.

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The imagery used is not only really poorly designed, it also runs the gamut from offensively sexist to downright fascist, with slogans like “beauty doesn’t have age, fertility does!” and “fertility is a common good” (your bodies aren’t your own, ladies – they belong to the nation!)

 

Guys seriously: Italian men are busy being mad about people being mad about Charlie Hebdo publishing comics about the earthquake in Italy which are – true to form – pretty distasteful and not all that funny. The problem with a hashtag is you can’t just take it back. Or maybe no one ever actually knew what they were signing up for when they said je sui Charlie?

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