Sunday, October 2, 2005

Tag Team Back Again

I have used up my witticisms. I have nothing prepared for today's lesson. I go on.

So Class, how are things? That was a rhetorical question Janet. I don't really care who you fucked on Thursday. It has nothing to do with our discussion topic and everyone else already knows. By the way, Jason has crabs. Now you do too. Like one big happy fucking family.

To continue...

Last class we left off with the notion that the literature of Isaac Aronson, most specifically his middle works, were heavily influenced by Norse Mythology. Did any of you actually do the assigned readings?

I didn't think so. It's a good thing most of you fuckers are trust fund babies. You'd never make it otherwise. To reiterate, you can see the effect of the Norse mythos in some of the simplest and most obvious ways - titles, character names, character traits, and blatant uses of the archetypes.

-That cell phone had better be off in 3 seconds or I will confiscate it and drive over it with my car. At now, mother fucker. I am trying to teach. Have some goddamn respect.-

Yet he also works with the spirit of the Norse consciousness. If you had done the reading, you would have realized, assuming you weren't stoned, that Norse culture was somewhat preoccupied with Death. Their gods were not immortal, but rather simply long-lived and like Man destined to die. Specifically in Ragnarok, their glorious version of the End Times. Moreover...

Jack, wake the fuck up. It's true I love the sound of my own voice, but I am not paid to talk to myself. If you want to sleep, just stay in bed and save the rest of us the trouble of having to deal with your rank carcass.

Where was I? Ah, yes. Do die in battle was the most noble of ends for a Norseman. For do so would allow the warrior to be carried of by Odin's Valkyries to an afterlife in Valhalla where he would spend all day fighting and all night drinking. That's right, it's not just an Irish pasttime. Of course they were kept in Valhalla until Ragnarok, at which time they would be called on to fight and die (forever this time) to save humanity. Which they would, but no one would remember them for it...

Indeed, the Norse Mythos paints a bleak picture of the frozen wastelands of Northern Europe. No wonder the Vikings went south to rape and pillage to their hearts content. I certainly would have. But it this bleak world view - fighting drinking dying in an endless meaningless cycle that Isaac Aronson picks up on. Though his characters are often engaged in an existential search for meaning, they never really seem to have much hope that their search will end or if it does that it will provide the meaning they were searching for. If your gods are fated to die, then in what does a man put his trust? Where is his faith? Is a glorious death the only act that is infused with meaning? No wonder they spent their days fighting and their nights drinking. What the fuck else was there?

And I would maintain that it is precicely this facination with a glorious death, with this hopelessness in the face of reality, and this reckless abandon of fighting, whoring, drinking, and outright decadence that the writing of Aronson so exquisitely captures.

Since none of you have paid any attention, that about wraps it up for today.

I will continue in the vein of the mythology of Isaac Aronson next week. Be sure to read up on the Tao because we will be covering his use of Eastern mysticism.

Now get the fuck out of my classroom. I got drinking and whoring to do.

Oh, Janet, if you wouldn't mind staying a little after class...

"deviant, abnormal: Most people are neurotic about something.
neuter adj. 1 asexual, sexless [J.S. Krol], epicene: Worker bees are neuter, neither male nor female."
- The Oxford Desk Thesaurus: American Edition, pg. 340

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