Vlad the Impaler’s Just Desserts

Lately, in honor of a birthday wish, my friends and I decided to celebrate Vlad the Impaler: inspiration for Dracula, terrible warlord, motto: “To the PAIN!AND DEATH!”  

Vladportrait

Now, most people take these images and honor him by creating things along the lines of:

Vladart

My friends and I chose a different direction:

Vladcake

Note the peaked red cap!  The bloodied face!  The bodies on spikes!  The battlefield dirt and decomposing flesh!

This is our design.

…And it was delicious.

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Maurice Sendak’s 85th Birthday

Today is a tribute to Sendak and a celebration of his works, in spite of the fact that he never reached this birthday.  It’s happening as a Google Doodle, but I wanted to add my personal tribute.

 

“The Wild is Yours”

 

Stomp those feet,

The wild is yours-

The dough will rise

And the fierce roars are beaten

-Let the cakes and sandwiches be eaten.

 

Milk like a sheet,

A party of snores-

The yonder will come

And your new age be reached

-Wherever your personal boat was beached.

 

Baby the old moon,

Feel the soup steam hot-

Comfort food’s best of all

It gives you pop! For when things get higgelty

-For lions, or boys, or a bumbling piggelty.

 

Wild stares end soon,

Chefs stir Night’s pot-

It’s a piece of cake to fall

But nothing escapes the maker’s batter

-Shape up what’s left til nothing’s the matter!

 

There’s more to age

Than when you left it-

Or the rumpus you ruled it

There’s more than nothing when you go

-You still fill us up, we love you so!

 

Lines pop! on page

Dream kitchens stay lit-

The king of the gone things comes for a visit

And stays for a year and a day in one night

-We promise, we swear, you won’t lose in the light!

 

I’m in the gone

And the gone’s in me-

And just as wild as he used to be

There’s more to life than having everything

-There’s also the gone things, the wild, and kings!

 

(My poem on Sendak’s death is here: https://wheresmytower.wordpress.com/2012/05/08/maurice-sendak-is-dead/)

 

Lords of the Rings AND Other Things

In a recent birthday discussion about activities with the Lord of the Rings cast, in literary figures and then in actors, several things became clear.

1. If a magic school the equivalent of Hogwarts began in Middle Earth, its founders would be:

-Elrond for Ravenclaw

-Boromir for Gryffindor

-Samwise for Hufflepuff

-Saruman for Slytherin

2. When visiting a haunted house with a LOTR character, you should take Aragorn.  He’d totally have your back.

3. When on a whale-watching boat, the person to hang out with is Sean Bean.  He has the ability to engage in and enjoy shipboard merriment while simultaneously being aware of the environment and on alert for sightings, even if the other passengers include pranksters.

4. If one had to babysit with someone that someone should be Elrond or Hugo Weaving-can you see the expression on his face when they overhear things he hadn’t wished them to or started running the wrong way?

5. If one of the cast had to be your wedding planner, it should be Andy Serkis.  He’s got directing experience and the ability to make incredibly stressful, going-wrong things laughable.  If it had to be a character, your wedding planner is Faramir. 

6. If one of the cast were to give the first speech at your wedding, it should be Boromir.  He gives short, sweet speeches and appreciates the real life of the party.  Moreover, he’s good at directing everyone else to partake more in the merriment.

7. If one of the cast were stalking you, it should be Billy Boyd.  If one must have a stalker they should be a soulful Scottish singer.

8. The funniest charades partner would be Dominic Monaghan.

 

Other things have candidates.  For instance

-When going to a haunted house  with the actors, would it be more fun to go with Elijah Wood (reassuringly goofy, but into it) or Liv Tyler (loving the fear, but reassuringly on the brink of laughter)?

-Would the best character stalker be Pippin (hilarious and bearing food) or Legolas (most soothing stalker ever and pretty)?

-Would you rather play charades with Haldir (swishy, painstaking, and interpretive dancey) or Legolas (earnest, stiff, and hilariously helpless at guessing)?

-Who would you most like to maintain an allegedly fancy garden with?  Ian McKellan (“Good work, now let’s knock off and have some iced beverages in our hats”) or Liv Tyler (“All paths lead to beautiful”)?  In characters, would you partner with Elrond (who guarantees both serene learning and a flourishing garden) or Samwise Gamgee (who guarantees growing things and agreement to your plans)?

-Who’d make the best college roommate?  Frodo (quiet, reader, good for dancing at parties and rooting-for-you advice on crushes) or Faramir (quiet, reader, good for hiking and giving perspective on parental issues)?  Or acting-wise, Ian McKellan  or Liv Tyler?

-Who would you like to host a dinner party with?  Gimli (most enthusiastic foodie, good for rousing the carousing) or Bilbo (best thinker of food choices and used to putting up with the worst of manners)?  Ian McKellan or Elijah Wood?

-Would your favorite Middle Earth designer (if all of them became adept for an epic designing show) be Faramir (Symbols, shininess, whites, and blues) or Eomer (Soft cloth, warmth, golds, and burgundies)?

-Who would you most like to bake cupcakes with?  Theoden (coziness, inept comedy, and victory announcements) or Samwise (earnest, peaceful, and up for most of the work)? Or Elijah Wood (goofy, messy, and everything-licking good) or Liv Tyler (calm, sweet partier)?

-Who would you like to ride a roller coaster by?  Galadriel (twinkle-in-her-eye) or Faramir (the light on the horizon is EVERYWHERE)? 

-Who would you most like to read your tarot cards?  Galadriel “(I see things that are, things that were, and some things that have not yet come to pass”) or Bilbo (“This is the most fascinating thing I learned from the elves, let me ponder, hmm”)?  Or Hugo Weaving or Sala?

-Whose self-help book would you most like to read?  Faramir’s “Resisting Rings to find Happiness” or Theodon’s “Getting out of the Ring in your Head”?

 

Feel free to weigh in with votes, other options, or more questions! 

(For example, ones with too many candidates to put here were With whom would you visit the zoo?  Who’d be the best partner in a non-dangerous but tricksy maze?  And so on!)