Friday, January 11, 2013

Follow Friday - Marcus Livius Drusus Was Assassinated in 91 B.C. for Proposing That Roman Allies Be Made Citizens

It's Friday again, and this means it's time for Follow Friday. There has been a slight change to the format, as now there are two Follow Friday hosts blogs and two Follow Friday Features Bloggers each week. To join the fun and make now book blogger friends, just follow these simple rules:
  1. Follow both of the Follow My Book Blog Friday Hosts (Parajunkee and Alison Can Read) and any one else you want to follow on the list.
  2. Follow the two Featured Bloggers of the week - The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia and Never Too Fond of Books.
  3. Put your Blog name and URL in the Linky thing.
  4. Grab the button up there and place it in a post, this post is for people to find a place to say hi in your comments.
  5. Follow, follow, follow as many as you can, as many as you want, or just follow a few. The whole point is to make new friends and find new blogs. Also, don't just follow, comment and say hi. Another blogger might not know you are a new follower if you don't say "Hi".
  6. If someone comments and says they are following you, be a dear and follow back. Spread the love . . . and the followers.
  7. If you want to show the link list, just follow the link below the entries and copy and paste it within your post!
  8. If you're new to the Follow Friday Hop, comment and let me know, so I can stop by and check out your blog!
And now for the Follow Friday Question: If you could choose one supernatural being or creature to really exist, what would it be and why?

This is an interesting question because so many supernatural creatures are, more less, expressions of human fears and nightmares. Vampires, werewolves, ghosts, zombies, and other things that "go bump in the night" are expressions of our inner fear of darkness, or sex, or death, our bestial nature, and really, almost anything else that scares us. Which means that bringing most supernatural creatures to life would simply be manifesting our fears in physical form. And giving them the ability to not just scare us, but to kill us in horrible and bloody ways. Now, some people might think that making our fears manifest so that they can commit violent murder across the world would be a good idea, but I'm not convinced. In fact, I think that would be a downright terrible idea.

Even the gods of mythology were often our fears given anthropomorphized form so that these fears could be propitiated. Among the Norse gods for example, Thor is the god of thunder and storms. For a nation of northern seafarers, what is more terrible than the lashing fury of a storm? And despite the prettied up version of Odin we see in pop culture today, he was a brooding and dangerous force in mythology. The same holds true for Greek mythology where Poseidon is the mercurial and unpredictable lord of the sea, Hades is the baleful lord of the underworld, and Ares is the very spirit of the violent savagery of war. Sure, there were exceptions, but the gods, and by extension, the fae (which are what gods become when they are diminished in scale) were by and large powerful entities to be feared rather than benevolent protectors to be loved.

But if I could stretch the definition of "supernatural" just a little bit, I'd choose to make wizards real. But only if I could be one of them. Characters like Ged, Väinämöinen, Merlin, Math, and Gandalf are my favorites in mythology and literature, and if they could be made to come to life, that would be what I would choose to do. Yes, I know that mythology and fiction is replete with examples of malevolent sorcerers - Saruman, Cob, Louhi, Morda, Morgana le Fay, and others - but they are by and large balanced out by wizards who are at least indifferent, and are sometimes benevolent. And on that basis, and the fact that I simply love the idea of wizards, I'd pick them as the supernatural "creature" to be made real.

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  1. New follower thru GFC and the FF blog hop! My blog is:
    I would choose mermaids because I just finished Madly and in that book they are peaceful creatures who love humans. Plus, they are usually beautiful and can live on land and under the ocean. How great is that?
    tweet me @glamourglory

  2. New follower! Wizards is a great choice! Especially if they are Harry Potter-esq!

    Check out my F&F.

    Sandy @ Somewhere Only We Know

  3. That's a good answer. :) Wizards may have fear attached to them, but they are also supernatural beings of wonder and wisdom.

    You like older books, and I have a giveaway for a gift card for an online vendor that carries used books. I thought you might be interested. If so, the link is . If not, I hope you don't think this is spammy.

  4. @Reyna Lay: Mermaids are sometimes portrayed as sweet, but like with most mythological creatures, I can't help but think of their roots in folklore. And in many of those stories, mermaids aren't quite so nice.

  5. @Sandy: Harry Potters wizards are nice, but not exactly what I had in mind.

  6. @Moonlit Librarian: I don't know if you could have a supernatural creature that inspired awe and wonder without attaching an element of fear and danger to them as well.