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My name is Lars, and I’m a cheater

My great achievement this weekend was building a table, for my Viking setup. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s a “Viking table,” because it doesn’t actually much resemble any known table from archeology, and is a cheat in any case. This is what I did, and why:

The table I’ve been using for book selling for the last several years was a random thrift store find—a table apparently designed for some kind of display, consisting of a circular pressed board top and three dowel legs which screwed into flanges. It wasn’t even close to authentic, but when I threw a sheepskin over it, it looked OK, because the round legs did look like known Viking table legs.

Vikings,mail,Decorah,Nordic Fest

That table had been working itself loose for a while, though, and it finally died in Minot last fall, when a heavy object (me) fell on it. So I needed a new table.

My plan was to try to do something like the actual replica table described in this article, but with longer legs. However, I couldn’t find the article while I was working, so I worked from memory, which was (as is so often the case) unreliable. The table I constructed looks like this:

Viking table Continue reading My name is Lars, and I’m a cheater

Allegory and Why Narnia Is Not One

Jared has the goods on how allegory is defined and why Narnia really isn’t one despite what you may have heard.

How then does he define Allegory? Perhaps the clearest definition in the most common language comes via a letter to Mrs. Hook (found in Letters of C.S. Lewis, 12/29/58):

By an allegory I mean a composition (whether pictorial or literary) in which immaterial realities are represented by feigned physical objects, e.g. a pictured Cupid allegorically represents erotic love (which in reality is an experience, not an object occupying a given area of space) or, Bunyan, a giant represents Despair.

Lars’ Popular Thanksgiving Post

One of our most popular posts, not by the comments it drew but by the traffic it has attracted over the years, is this story from September 21, 2006 about a microwave and a turkey. It’s linked from an urban legend page which talks about a pregnant turkey prank, which may or may not have happened despite being believable (but that page has been removed in the ever-changing Internet).

If you haven’t read either story, here’s your chance to catch up.

The International Viking Seminar

I don’t generally do long posts while out of town, especially on weekends. But I think the best way to deliver my report on the International Vinland Seminar today is to write up a summary while my memory’s fresh.

We met at North Park University in Chicago, a school with Swedish roots that I wasn’t familiar with. It reminds me a little of my alma mater, Augsburg College in Minneapolis, in that it’s set (I suspect the admissions brochures say “nestled”) in an urban neighborhood. Nice place, though.

We met in a lecture hall called Hamming Hall, and I got permission to set up my book table. I was in the back of the room, but it gave me a good view, so I just stayed there through the entire event, selling my books during breaks. Continue reading The International Viking Seminar

Second breakfast for Second Harvest

Donna Farley, author of Bearing the Saint, which I reviewed below, forwarded a link to a site called Hobbit Meals, which definitely looks worthy of a mention at Brandywine Books.

From their Mission Statement:

Hobbit Meals is dedicated to feeding the hungry in our local communities by hosting “Hobbit Meals,” in which a group gathers to enjoy a hobbit feast, share hobbit recipes, and enjoy all things Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, as well as bring donated food to supply local food banks. Monetary donations are also encouraged to provide local food banks with overhead costs and additional monies for food.

They seem to have a Christian orientation too. God bless ’em. May the hair on their feet never fall out.