And where among all the vintage beer signs, busts of Elvis, and other typical bar memorabilia, there is a ouija board on the wall.
Saturday the 14th — the last chance to eat some chile colorado before heading east for New England cooking. (Tres Margaritas, Pueblo.).
But . . . today’s Amtrak breakfast menu featured a quesadilla of sorts, making that the first time that I had been served green chiles on the train.
• The slow abandonment of Pagan religion might be reflected in burials from early medieval France. “Within some of the tombs, the archaeologists discovered objects that suggest the persistence of pagan rites, even though Christianity was becoming more prevalent.” None of the articles that I have read give dates for these burials, so I am guessing they were from earlier than 1000 CE.
• Women like the witch archetype because she is powerful. “On some level, all of the contemporary trappings of witchiness tap into that desire to feel powerful.”
Now you know. I suppose that it had to be said, and that my readers are mature enough to deal with this knowledge.
• Be buried in the Neolithic way so that your descendants may venerate you properly. It’s now possible in Britain.
• “Animism at the Dinner Table.” From Sarah Lawless’ blog — really, this is the basic basic level of a Pagan life. It is more important than pantheons, Lore, texts, dressing up like the ancestors and all the stuff that people get worked up about.
What if we didn’t strive to be like the ancients, whose true ways are long lost and whose skills are beyond many of us at this time, but instead decided to bring the philosophy of animism to the dinner table? What would it look like? To be honest, it would look foolish to an outsider as it would involve talking to plants and animals, talking to our food sources, as if they were sentient and could understand us. Most of the old prayers collected as folklore weren’t really prayers at all, they were people talking to plants and to wild spirits.
. . . or any other left-handed person. Are we “damaged”? Genetically different? Who knows?
When I was a student at Reed College, we often fled south to San Francisco at spring break or other times, “itching to get away from Portland, Oregon.”
And one day five Reedies squeezed into a booth at the late, legendary Sam Wo Restaurant in Chinatown, only to find that we were all left-handed. Make of that what you will.
(However, in the interest of manners, I use a knife and fork left-handed and chopsticks right-handed.)
But that caffeine is only mechanism behind coffee’s health effects is supported by a small study of 554 Japanese adults from October that looked at coffee and green tea drinking habits in relation to the bundle of risk factors for coronary artery disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes known together as metabolic syndrome. Only coffee — not tea — was associated with reduced risk, mostly because of dramatic reductions observed in serum triglyceride levels.
So aside from caffeine, just what are you getting in a cup, or two, or six? Thousands of mostly understudied chemicals that contribute to flavor and aroma, including plant phenols, chlorogenic acids, and quinides, all of which function as antioxidents. Diterpenoids in unfiltered coffee may raise good cholesterol and lower bad cholesterol. And, okay, there’s also ash which, to be fair, is no more healthful than you would think — though it certainly isn’t bad for you.
* Is it a functioning Pagan shrine? You bet it is.
(well, I did have one yesterday at a meeting), but I would go here for doughnuts.
The group posted a photo on its page of a tomato – which appears to reveal the shape of a cross after being cut in half – along with the message: “Eating tomatoes is forbidden because they are Christian. [The tomato] praises the cross instead of Allah and says that Allah is three (a reference to the Trinity).
[God help us]. I implore you to spread this photo because there is a sister from Palestine who saw the prophet of Allah [Mohammad] in a vision and he was crying, warning his nation against eating them [tomatoes]. If you don’t spread this [message], know that it is the devil who stopped you.”
Silly fundamentalists. Eating tomatoes will lead you to worship Coatlicue.
My approach to the eight-festival Pagan calendar works like this: the cross-quarter days are for ritual—be that outdoor bonfires or black candles at midnight.
The quarter days—solstices and equinoxes—are for public and communal celebrations: with the whole public, not just with other Pagans.
The fall equinox offers choice of harvest festivals: the Chile & Frijoles (pinto beans) festival in Pueblo (bigger) or the Holy Cross Abbey Winery Harvest Festival in Cañon City—smaller but still crowded.
M. and I chose the latter this year, buying elderberry jam and garlicky goat cheese and drinking Abbey wines under the blazing sun. Two guys in charro outfits up from Pueblo played a ranchera–rockbilly–soft rock mix, which is exactly what you expect from a Pueblo band.
Now the Myth-Making Begins
That stuff on the winery home page about “simple Benedictine Fathers had a dream”—sounds good, right? Don’t the grape vines just look right next to the Gothic Revival abbey?
But the Holy Cross Benedictines were not “simple.” They were school teachers for the most part, running a well-respected secondary school for boys (boarding and day students) from the 1920s until it closed in 1985. Like so much Catholic education, it was a victim of demographics: not enough new monks and priests coming up, not enough church financial support to afford to pay lay (non-monastic) teachers, so no way to keep the doors open and the lights on.
After that, the dwindling number of elderly monks rented out their buildings to the community college and other users.
The winery, meanwhile, did not open until 2002. It employs no monks in its day-to-day operations. The monks could not have made wine for sale in the 1920s anyway because of Prohibition. Their mission was educational.
But the idea of “monks making wine” is so appealing that in a generation people will be strolling the grounds of the abbey talking about how the Benedictines came to Cañon City “a hundred years ago” to plant vineyards and bottle some good cabernet franc. I would bet money on it.
It is not unlike saying that the local morris dancers or village harvest festival represent an unbroken survival from ancient Paganism instead of—in either case—something (re)invented by an antiquarian-minded vicar.
Of course, that Chile & Frijoles Festival—great street festival that it is—is a relatively new creation too. This was its seventeenth year.
It represents a conscious attempt by Pueblo’s elite to re-cast the city’s image as a tourist-friendly sort of Santa Fe North, instead of the grimy steel mill town that it was for decades, dominated by union Democrats with Italian and Slavic surnames.
But Pueblo does have a good climate for growing peppers.
(As to the post’s title, the musicians played “Cielito Lindo,” of course.)
Read this post about an Egyptian television cooking show and the importance of foodways in religion, if only for the all-too-typical “Polish cookies” anecdote.
I cannot see any Pagans today using the “Polish cookies” line, although we do have all too many people invested in boundary maintenance.
What is [any subdivision of’] Pagan cooking, anyway? And what would be considered objectionable food?