Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Welcome, everyone.
Stereo Nacht: Good evening Ms. Andrea!
Stereo Nacht: And Ms. Anne!
Jane Anne: Thank you 🙂
Stereo Nacht: And Ms Shatner-Orr!
Stereo Nacht: And all those I missed!
Emilly Shatner-Orr waves!
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: I shall return momentarily.
Jane Anne: hi Jimmy, we served on the USS amazon years ago
Stereo Nacht: GOOD EVENING MR. BRANAGH!
Jimmy Branagh: Hi! I remmber!
Jane Anne: I was Annea Jane then
Jane Anne: ha
Jimmy Branagh: Hoy Miss Stereo!
Jimmy Branagh: Yes 🙂
Boiler Elf looks around
Boiler Elf: where did the Baron go?
Stereo Nacht: Good evening Mr. Elf!
Nyx Malaspinar claps politely
Boiler Elf: Ms Writer
Boiler Elf points to the sofa
Sophie: Helloo 🙂
Stereo Nacht: He said he’d be back; maybe his typist’s computer is misbehaving?
Ceejay Writer: Mister Boiler! Hello!
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Always the way.
Boiler Elf: Did you do your homework from last year?
Jimmy Branagh: ((He’s setting up a prim farm to finish this set))
Boiler Elf: Ah
Boiler Elf: then i’ll wait
Ceejay Writer: Erm, we had homework? wracks brain
Owlie Bonesworth admires the candy covered boots
Boiler Elf: But Ms WRiter sits on the sofa with me because she forgot her homework
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Having been at a Salon where we ran out of prims before, it’s…amusing to sit through
Nyx Malaspinar eyes the Croquembouche thoughtfully.
Ceejay Writer: Ooooooh. Well, okay, hope you’ve bathed.
Boiler Elf: Is there anyone here from the Basque culture?
Boiler Elf: If there is, I’ll need you for my Culture Checker
Nyx Malaspinar twitches…sez naught.
Ceejay Writer: Can’t sit with you till you’ve rezzed! smug
Boiler Elf: Ah, there he is. More food, I hope
Boiler Elf: We’re going to need a lot of it
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Look at all these good folk, eager for the Boiler Elf’s wisdom.
Boiler Elf: Hope I brought enough beer
Ceejay Writer: Eager for the Boiler Elf’s beer is more like it
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: I have food, but these folk will have to eat what is here to make room for it.
Nyx Malaspinar grins at thumper, waves at Vic.
Vic Mornington: 😀
Emilly Shatner-Orr: A possibly daunting task
Jimmy Branagh: Hoy Mr Vic!
Stereo Nacht: Ah! Good evening Mr. Mornington! Long time no see!
Vic Mornington: Hoy Jimmy!
Stereo Nacht: Carmelle whinnies hello to Thumper
Vic Mornington: Hi Stereo!
Ceejay Writer: Viiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiictor?
Vic Mornington: Ceeeeeeeeeeeeejay?
Ceejay Writer: 😀 😀 😀 ❤
Vic Mornington: 😀 😀 ❤
Boiler Elf: are you comfortable, Writer?
Ceejay Writer: Yes, I avoided sitting on the cat.
Boiler Elf: MOrnington!
Vic Mornington: O.O runs off
Boiler Elf: Oh, the list of your sins in my book this year!
Ceejay Writer points at Victor and laughs.
Vic Mornington: unfortunatley i was undergoing cosmetic surgery, so couldnt make it to the ball, such a shame grins
Boiler Elf snaps his head around to look at Writer
Ceejay Writer: meep!
Boiler Elf: Ah. I see
Boiler Elf: The teeth?
Vic Mornington: teeth, legs, face, skin, everything
Boiler Elf blinks
Boiler Elf: YOU’re getting your typist goat legs?
Vic Mornington points to the lack of hoofs
Boiler Elf: Oh.
Boiler Elf: Right, so while the Baron is setting the table
Vic Mornington: well i was in hospital in RL as well for check up’s lol
Boiler Elf: Let’s get started
Boiler Elf: Let’s hear your greetings!
Boiler Elf: MERRY CHRISTMAS!
Ceejay Writer: Glad you are back amongst us Vic!
Nyx Malaspinar: nods in agreement
Boiler Elf puts his hand to his ear
Ceejay Writer: MELE KALIKIMAKA!
Vic Mornington: 😀 MERRY CHRISTMAS!
Jimmy Branagh: ?me applauds and whoops
Boiler Elf stares at Writer again
Vic Mornington: Nollaig Shona! (thats scots Gaelic)
Ceejay Writer: /mestares back. “What NOW?”
Jimmy Branagh: MERRY CHRISTMAS!
Boiler Elf: Only Christians and twee music fans this year?
Boiler Elf: Come come now, with sincerity!
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Craciun fericit.
Boiler Elf: Yes!
Nyx Malaspinar: buon natale a tutti
Sophie: Happy Hanukhah 🙂
Boiler Elf: FAHOO FOREY
Boiler Elf: that’s the spirit
Jane Anne: Merry Virtual Christmas all
Boiler Elf: False sincerity is better than no sincerity at all, and this has been a hella rough year
Boiler Elf: Welcome, welcome
Katie: Happy Wootmas!
Boiler Elf: Fahoo ramooz
Ceejay Writer: Oh, in that case A JOYOUSE AND MERRY MET FELICITATIONS AND A YEW TREE IN HER LIVING ROOM HEY NONNY NONNY
Boiler Elf: welcome welcome
Vic Mornington: Happy Saturnalia!
Boiler Elf: dahoo damooz
Sophie: can we get a ‘lost tape’ for this year? I’d like to erase it myself
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Oh, a very happy Wootmas!
Nyx Malaspinar: Blessed Yule
Boiler Elf touchs his nose and points at Sophie
Stereo Nacht: Happy wootmas indeed!
Boiler Elf: LEt’s start with some news
Ceejay Writer: Wootmas!
Stereo Nacht: (Do I have to riverdance? 😉 )
Boiler Elf: the folklore character in the news this year is
Boiler Elf: the Krampus!
Jane Anne: maay your pixels and voxels be merry and gay 🙂
Nyx Malaspinar: Yayssssss
Ceejay Writer: I have noticed that, actually. A few Krampus stories crept up at me.
Jane Anne: ohh I saw Santa fought a krampus today and won. no contest!
Majak: is he running loose in New Babbage?
Boiler Elf: Somehow, Krampus is causing all kinds of grief in the Cal lof Duty online game system.
Sophie: oh no!
Boiler Elf: and the players are all grousing because, as he should be,
Boiler Elf: he is Wicked Hard To Kill
Ceejay Writer: Ahahahahah I mean oh dear.
Boiler Elf: Ther’s a screen shot
Jane Anne: Oh hmm the like revenge elf
Majak: Krampus needs to be nerfed
Emilly Shatner-Orr: This sounds like a very Krampus thing to do
Jane Anne: hes dodge sniper bullets? well gee hmm
Boiler Elf: also, if you’re an American, you know about those kitschy faux-barvarian towns scattered about the country?
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Unfortunately
Boiler Elf: they are very popular around the holidays for kitschy shopping and preztels
Boiler Elf: well
Nyx Malaspinar: Yes indeed….
Boiler Elf: in Leavenworth, Washington, which is one of those towns
Boiler Elf: the Knights of Columbus are all up in arms
Nyx Malaspinar: uh oh….. “looks innocent”.
Boiler Elf: because the town invited a krampus club from Seattle to have a pub crawl to open the season
Boiler Elf gasps
Boiler Elf: so pagan!
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Oh, that was a bad idea, I’m sure 😀
Boiler Elf: The knights say they’re terrifying little kids
Katie: And from Seattle, no less!
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: As they should.
Nyx Malaspinar: well that is sort of the point
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Only the bad ones
Owlie Bonesworth: who let the kids in the bars?
Boiler Elf: but if you look up the article, you’ll see a video of little kids dancing with the monsters
Boiler Elf: well, it gave me a laugh
Emilly Shatner-Orr: You know, THAT is an excellent question
Boiler Elf: here’s alink to the article
Boiler Elf: https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/the-war-on-christmas-rebranding-even-krampus-stirs-up-leavenworth/
Ceejay Writer: I’ve spent time in Leavenworth back in my British car club days
Jane Anne: good kids see santa bad kids see Kraampys?
Boiler Elf shrugs
Boiler Elf: Let’s recap last year
Boiler Elf: since most of you were at the Rosehaven ball
Nyx Malaspinar considers that Boiler Elf with horns might make an xlnt Krampus…
Boiler Elf: We started the salon iwth an experiment
Boiler Elf: Kevin, my assistant in the real world
Boiler Elf: drank a whole glass of unpastuerized home made egg nog which had been sitting on the shelf for an entire year. unrefridgerated
Vic Mornington: o.O
Boiler Elf: and I was still on my feet by the end of the hour
Sophie turns an awful shade of green
Boiler Elf: Did anyone try the homemade egg nog? I’d like to know how it turned out.
Boiler Elf: I’ve got a couple recipes if you want to try it, ask me after the hour
Katie: after an entire year, wouldn’t it be kind of solid?
Ceejay Writer: Um, no, I chickened out and made forsythia mead insead.
Boiler Elf: The man topic was on the 12 days of christmas, in particular , the element of feasting
Nyx Malaspinar going to Ceejay’s house later.
Ceejay Writer: 🙂
Boiler Elf: Now we all know Ms Writer here is a foodie
Boiler Elf: so
Boiler Elf: I gave her some homework
Ceejay Writer: And I totally forgot about it. hangs head
Boiler Elf: IN the process, we had a surprise Odin sighting, something I have been trying to get since the beginning of this series of talks
Boiler Elf glares
Jane Anne: suddenly Im hungry again
Boiler Elf: NAUGHTY!!!
Ceejay Writer tries to look stoic
Boiler Elf: What we found, was a guy on a white horse, in a red cloak, followed by a bunch of strange small people singing his praises
Katie: ah, Bill Gates.
Boiler Elf: Sinterklaas, who appears on Dec 6
Boiler Elf: and St Martin of tours , who appears on nov. 11th
Boiler Elf: both are gift givers
Boiler Elf: oh, wait
Boiler Elf: we can’t show zwarte piet anymore. we’ll loose our funding.
Stereo Nacht: That’s Saint Niklas, isn’t he?
Boiler Elf: he was retured last year by the dutch governemnt
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach gestures at Fraulein Jane Anne to partake.
Boiler Elf: there we go
Boiler Elf: Sinterklass and his entourage of Sooty Petes
Boiler Elf: Now what’s interesting here
Nyx Malaspinar: Have we got to the Mari Lywd yet?
Boiler Elf: is November 11th
Stereo Nacht: Ah! I wasn’t looking at the correct picture…
Boiler Elf: Martinmas
Boiler Elf: Not this year, Nyx
Boiler Elf: Martinmas is also known as “Old Halloween”
Boiler Elf: and it is the traditional day to slaughter the food animals
Boiler Elf: and feast on a large bird
Boiler Elf: the large bird feast in November sounds familiar, yes?
Boiler Elf: but
Boiler Elf: No one knows why we slaughter the animals on Nov. 11th
Ceejay Writer: it DOES.
Boiler Elf: I’d give that a high probablilty of a pagan hold over
Boiler Elf: The dates get murky with the calendar shifts, of coursd
Boiler Elf: so my homework question for our resident foodie here was
Boiler Elf: How do you slaughter the food animals on nove. 11th, then go on a pesca-vegan fast until Dec. 24th???
Boiler Elf: how does that work?
Boiler Elf: and does it have anything to do with making sausages?
Nyx Malaspinar: XD
Stereo Nacht: (Curing.)
Boiler Elf: anyone?
Katie: you use the time inbetween to smoke or otherwise preserve the meat for the winter
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: The meat has to age, for one.
Nyx Malaspinar: hang it up and salt it
Stereo Nacht: Salting. drying, smoking the meat so it can conserve takes time.
Boiler Elf: if anyone is working on a foodie graduate degree, that might be a good thesis for research, because I want to know.
Ceejay Writer: Ah, NOW I remember that question. Gotta be in the preserving and aging processes.
Ceejay Writer: Can’t be canning, that wasn’t invented yet.
Boiler Elf: oh, NOW she remembers
Sophie: the beer from the last harvest isn’t done yet… cured meat and mead take time to process.
Ceejay Writer sticks out tongue.
Boiler Elf: and you fed the murderpuppy all the sausages, I suppose?
Sophie: hence: the new year’s feasting
Nyx Malaspinar: climates also affect such things…
Boiler Elf: hmpf
Boiler Elf: Speaking of feasting
Boiler Elf: Have you ever heard of Olentzero?
Boiler Elf: No one loves a feast more than him.
Boiler Elf: Olentzero?
Emilly Shatner-Orr: So it has to come down to the time it takes to salt-cure, hang-age, solid–freeze (outdoors) or smoke. With people slicing off bits to toss in warming stews or what-not.
Nyx Malaspinar: that damn kid begging
Boiler Elf: Anyone?
Boiler Elf: we;re moving on now
Ceejay Writer: Meat could go in crockery and covered in oil that hardens, get salted, smoked, maybe it’s all done in time for some resting and relaxing and celebrating at New Years
Nyx Malaspinar: well yeah you go an ask for ingredients
Ceejay Writer: MAYBE I wrote all that down last year and just found the scrap of paper
Boiler Elf: hmmm
Boiler Elf: MAYBE?
Boiler Elf gives sideeye
Ceejay Writer: Definitely!
Ceejay Writer: Yep, that’s what happened
Boiler Elf: Onward to Olentzero?
Ceejay Writer: Is that a type of margarine?
Stereo Nacht: Zero oil? o.O
Boiler Elf: What is wrong with you, Writer???
Boiler Elf: Everything that has a name exists, if we believe it exists.
Nyx Malaspinar: am I off the mark you gather ingredients for a feast….isn’t that part of Olentzero?
Boiler Elf: even Oleo
Ceejay Writer: I hung out with Bob too much in my formative years.
Boiler Elf: So.
Boiler Elf: Olentzero is a giant
Boiler Elf: He lives in Basque Country, which includes the north Pyranees, between Spain and France.
Boiler Elf: Now the Basque are something of a conundrum, as it their language not related to any other.
Boiler Elf: How is the spread coming, Baron?
Chocolate whispers: mmmmm what an amazing combination, chocolate and vainilla croquembouches on xmas tree shape, so soft and delicious!
Boiler Elf: Giants have appetites like you would not believe
Boiler Elf: There’s two schools of thought on where the Basque come from
Stereo Nacht: Well, how do you think they got so big?
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: The table is nearly full, Herr Elf.
Boiler Elf: 2 major schools, i should say
Boiler Elf: First, that they are truly indigenous to the region.
Boiler Elf: Or Second, that they migrated in with the modern west European genetic groups, but practiced a closed trade,
Sophie: I’d like to do a DNA study and see if they are the last remnants of the Neantherdals
Boiler Elf: and kept their language pure to protect their livelihoods.
Boiler Elf nods
Boiler Elf: Look it up on the ‘Net some night when you can’t sleep, it’s quite the rabbit hole.
Boiler Elf: But I digress—
Boiler Elf: The Basque folk, in their mythology, have a memory of jentil (plural jentilak),
Boiler Elf: a race of giants who lived along side them in pre-christian times.
Boiler Elf: (Side note: Latin gentilis was used to refer to pre-Christian civilizations and in particular to the builders of megalithic monuments)
Boiler Elf: The giants were hairy and so tall that they could walk in the sea and throw rocks from one mountain to another.
Boiler Elf: The giants were believed to have created neolithic monuments, such as dolmens, found around the region
Boiler Elf: He appears, often drunk, in traditional Basque farmer clothing:
Boiler Elf: dark pants tucked into socks below the knees; “abarkak” or leather, rope tied shoes; a dark overshirt sometimes with a coat of natural wool; a black beret, staff and a smoking pipe.
Boiler Elf: There’s an effigy of him pictured on the wall
Boiler Elf: He is paraded through the streets, choral groups accompanying him comprised mostly of youthful choristers, dressed in similar costume and bundled up for protection from the chilling wintry winds.
Boiler Elf: Huh. another guy with a retinue of small strange people singing praises. that must be a THing
Zantyago Mannonen: apologies
Zantyago Mannonen: I teteloprted intop the place
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Of course.
Boiler Elf: He has a companion,
Ceejay Writer snickers
Boiler Elf: Mari Domingi
Boiler Elf: She is not his wife, but they are good friends.
Nyx Malaspinar: (rowdy throngs of merrymakers…reminds me of Dionysos/Bacchus)
Boiler Elf: Mari Domingo is associated with the winter solstice.
Boiler Elf: And check out that hat
Boiler Elf: She is a shepherdess, and knows all the land and its
Boiler Elf: secrets, when to plant, and the use of medicinal plants.
Boiler Elf: In other words, a traditional wise woman.
Ceejay Writer: That is some hat!
Boiler Elf: So, this sounds like like a very ancient character, yes?
Boiler Elf: Would anyone like to guess when she first appeared?
Boiler Elf waits for it
Nyx Malaspinar: 5000 BC?
Nyx Malaspinar: it’s a stab
Ceejay Writer: 12 BC!
Wildstar Beaumont: 1930s ?
Nyx Malaspinar: holds up a neolithic statue
Boiler Elf: Remember what I told you about Santa Lucia in Sweden?
Boiler Elf puts a finger on his nose and points at Wildstar
Boiler Elf: Mari Domingi first appeared In 1994.
Stereo Nacht: Smurf hat! 😉
Boiler Elf: The name comes from a character in a folk song from the early 20th century, which goes like this:
Boiler Elf: “Here is Mari Domingi, look at that,
who wants to come with us to Bethlehem,
if you want us to go to Bethlehem,
you have to take off that old skirt.
Emilly Shatner-Orr: That’s recent
Majak: she sounded old
Boiler Elf: Come on come on I was looking for you
Come on, come on, I was looking for you.
Come on, let’s worship the one who was born in Bethlehem
that beautiful child, that beautiful child. “
Ceejay Writer: Dang! Er I mean Gosh!
Boiler Elf: She really did sound old, didn’t she?
Boiler Elf: Does this remind us of anyone else?
Boiler Elf: Maybe La Befana, the witch who was too busy cleaning her house to go with the Magi to see the child?
Ceejay Writer: A smurf?
Boiler Elf: But here, she’s being shamed into not going
Boiler Elf: Huh
Jimmy Branagh: Conehead?
Boiler Elf: To recap: St. Lucia of Sweden went viral after a local pageant was broadcast on the radio in the 1020s
Katie: Well, they are from France.
Boiler Elf: 1920s
Ceejay Writer: Those stories sound related
Boiler Elf: That’s why I love Christmas characters so much. They sound ancient, but if you scratch the surface, we can document their time lines
Emilly Shatner-Orr: They do
Boiler Elf: And that gives us insight to how the stories of ancient mythology changed and adapted as they migrated into new cultures.
Boiler Elf: Well then. Moving on…
Boiler Elf: Olentzero is legit much older.
Boiler Elf: I think we may have found something bona fide pre-christian in this one
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Though I still love the theory that Sinterklass, traced back far enough, leads to Sami shamans who wore red cloaks
Boiler Elf: Like so many giants, Olentzero is tall and thick with a huge appetite. On his Christmas Eve trek around Basque country, up and down the mountains and across the valleys between, his hunger grows and grows.
Boiler Elf: Fortunately, the villages expect him and his appetite, and we always prepare him a snack.
Boiler Elf: How’s the table coming Baron?
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Some of everything, sir.
Boiler Elf: Excellent
Boiler Elf: Olentzero’s appetite is legendary. Listen to some eye witness accounts—
Boiler Elf: “I’ll never forget the year I saw him eat three foot-long chorizo sausages on three loaves of bread with three dozen fried eggs, washed down with a gallon jug of cider in a snap of finger-thumb or less. My friend Oihana in the next village over says she saw him gulp down two roast chickens, bones and all, two bottles of txacoli wine and a huge skillet of rice. Just wait and see, watching him eat is almost as amazing as watching him chop firewood, or make toys but you can’t turn away for even a moment, because centuries of practice makes more than perfection, it makes speed.”
Ceejay Writer eyes that stuffed venison
Boiler Elf: and
Boiler Elf: “Here he is. See the tall man with the white beard and the worn out beret, angled to one side? See the big red sack slung on his back? Look, he’s set it down. Take him this egg sandwich. I made the potato omelet myself. 12 eggs, six big potatoes and one yellow onion in it: stuffed into a big round loaf of bread. Run along now. I promise he won’t bite. Don’t forget your smile and your please and thank you, giants appreciate manners too.”
Boiler Elf: Goodness
Boiler Elf: fee fi fo fum even!
Boiler Elf: Like a good many things Basque, we do not have certitude as to the exact origins of this winter personage.
Boiler Elf: His story goes like this:
Sophie: no wonder they have to wait until new year’s for feasting… that giant ate everything else beforehand
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Hm, no Iberian Peninsular foods…
Boiler Elf: As a new born he was abandoned in the woods and was found by a fairy who gave him the name Olentzero.
Majak: as long as he doesnt try to eat us
Boiler Elf: The fairy bestowed gifts of strength and kindness on him and handed him to an older childless couple living alone in the woods.
Boiler Elf: He turned into a strong man and charcoal burner who was also good with his hands,
carving wooden toys that he would carry in a big charcoal bag to give to the children of the village.
Boiler Elf: It is said that he died one day saving children from a burning house.
Ceejay Writer: Awww.
Boiler Elf: When he died, the fairy who had found him granted him eternal life to continue to bring joy to children and people.
Boiler Elf: you digest that while i give Kevin a biobreak
Stereo Nacht: Yeah, foot-long chorizon on a full loaf of bread may take a while to digest…
Jimmy Branagh hums the Jeopardy theme
Boiler Elf: Righto
Nyx Malaspinar: funny how the Basques have a hungry giant and the Spanish has an elf relieving himself…wonders why she thought of that.
Ceejay Writer: That poor old couple that got him. Suddenly they have to feed themselves AND HIM
Boiler Elf swquints at the story
Boiler Elf: you know
Boiler Elf: this isn’t sitting quite right for me
Boiler Elf: is it for yuo?
Boiler Elf: I mean, where’s the terror?
Stereo Nacht: Does it need terror?
Boiler Elf: It sounds like a mid-century santization to me.
Boiler Elf stares at Sterio
Boiler Elf: Christmas. Horror. Is. Best. Horror.
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach checks the pot of soups for horror
Boiler Elf: Those of you who had the misfortune to be born in the mid 1960s may have bitter conficted memories of the joyless pablum that was children’s entertainment.
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Wasn’t there something about child terrifying in Olentzero’s legend?
Stereo Nacht: Oh well. Easy. Make him short-sighted, and accidentally eating the children who come feed him.
Boiler Elf: Especially when you knew quite well that there used to me much cooler stuff available because you had access to your gram’s book or pre-code movies.
Ceejay Writer: As MST3K once said, “The terror is on backorder”
Stereo Nacht: (Or those who refuse to feed him.)
Boiler Elf: That might be why you like Star Wars so much, yes?
Boiler Elf: But I digress.
Sophie: gingerbread. children.
Boiler Elf: Over the centuries the “story” of Olentzero has been adapted.
Boiler Elf: and that indeed is the mid-century version of Olentzero’s story
Boiler Elf: That version of the story was written in 1952 in Francoist Spain by a group dedicated to reviving Basque culture.
Boiler Elf: Francisco Franco, the Spanish dictator, some of you might remember,
Boiler Elf: Who did not die for a very long time
Boiler Elf: (Even SNL made jokes about it on Weekend Update)
Boiler Elf: Had been waging a campaign to eliminate the Basque language and culture.
Katie: And he’s still dead
Boiler Elf: Indeed!
Boiler Elf: During the 1970s, Olentzero became a gift-giver,
Boiler Elf: in attempts to find an alternative to the Spanish tradition of the Magi. and the French Pére Noël.
Emilly Shatner-Orr: The fight lives on, though, sadly
Ceejay Writer: Last I heard he was valiantly holding on to death
Boiler Elf: The more gruesome elements were removed to make Olentzero more suitable for young children
Boiler Elf: and to remove elements which were deemed too pagan.
Boiler Elf: So let’s go back in time some more
Boiler Elf: and see what those “gruesom” elements were
Boiler Elf: There are a lot of winter solstice vibes going on in the tradition, particularly those of last meals and human sacrifice.
Boiler Elf: Older variations of Olentzero’s legend warn
Boiler Elf: that children had to come home early, or Olentzero would catch them in the street with his sickle.
Boiler Elf: Or that Olentzero would come to cut their throats of children who did not go to bed on time.
Boiler Elf: Or that Olentzero with the red eyes has come to the chimney, if we break the fast, he will cut our throats,
Boiler Elf: (Referring to the Advent fasting periods before Christmas)
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Ah, there’s the child threatening
Boiler Elf: And his effigy was hung from the church tower after midnight mass on Christmas Eve to scare children into behaving
Katie: i’m sensing a theme here
Boiler Elf: Can’t have Christmas without scared children
Boiler Elf: nope nope
Boiler Elf checks the time
Boiler Elf: may I go over?
Majak: of course
Jimmy Branagh: Sure
Boiler Elf: If we back to the 16th century
That’s when a man named Lope de Isasi wrote down the first account of Olentzero.
Boiler Elf: Di Isasi’s version tells of a time thousands of years ago when there was a tribe of jentilak and Olentzero was one of them.
Boiler Elf: jentilak being the giants
Boiler Elf: They lived in the forests of the Pyrenees in Nafarroa, in the area of the village of Lesaka.
Boiler Elf: And the story went like this—
Boiler Elf: One day the people of this tribe discovered a glowing cloud in the sky.
Boiler Elf: They feared that this celestial phenomenon was the divine sign of the arrival of the imminent birth of Jesus.
Boiler Elf: None of them could look at this bright cloud except for a very old, nearly blind man.
Boiler Elf: They held him up to take a look.
Boiler Elf: He turned pale and confirmed their wildest fear:
Boiler Elf: “Yes, this is the sign, Jesus will be born soon”.
Boiler Elf: They feared that vast changes would come with the arrival of Jesus and the demise of their way of life.
Boiler Elf: oh dear
Boiler Elf: After foreseeing this terrible news, the old man only saw a solution in terminating his life.
Boiler Elf: !!!
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Well, they weren’t necessarily wrong…
Boiler Elf: So
Boiler Elf: So he asked his giant friends to throw him off the highest cliff.
Boiler Elf: Which they did
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach thoughtfully slides a chorizo dish onto the table
Ceejay Writer: He coulda jumped if he was so intent on it
Boiler Elf: But on the way back down the mountain,
Ceejay Writer: But noooo, the holidays are a time to put guilt on friends and family.
Boiler Elf: well, he couldn’t see well and didn’t want to mess it up
Ceejay Writer: Ah, cool.
Boiler Elf: But on the way back down the mountain,
the group of giants tripped head over heels and fell to their death.
Boiler Elf: All, except one. And that was Olentzero.
Emilly Shatner-Orr: The Irony
Boiler Elf: Olentzero hiked to the villages in the valley, and
Ceejay Writer: So that went well, getting others who could see better to help.
Boiler Elf: with his sickle brutally cut the throat of those people who ate too much on the day before the arrival of Christ,
Boiler Elf: i.e. on the 24th of December.
Boiler Elf: Thought why they would have known to fast, I can’t suss either
Boiler Elf gazes at the ceiling
Boiler Elf: Which, all in all, is a very strange tale.
Boiler Elf: Giants, of course, are not the fasting type.
Boiler Elf: Olentzero was a thick glutton who could eat huge quantities of meat
Boiler Elf: which he washed down with strong liquor
Boiler Elf: No surprise that he was frequently drunk and irritable
Boiler Elf: Heaven save the soul who disturbs a hung-over giant, yes?
Ceejay Writer: This all parallels family holiday dinners for some of us.
Boiler Elf: This might be one of the strangest of the folklore character stories I ahve come across.
Boiler Elf: The giants, from neolithic times
Boiler Elf: juxtaposed with the advent fast
Boiler Elf: what???
Boiler Elf: how????
Jimmy Branagh: Me too. Have never heard of this before
Boiler Elf: and he will gut you with a sickle if you are found not fasting
Vic Mornington: 😮
Majak: im in trouble
Boiler Elf: there’s a lot to unpack in this one
Boiler Elf: and i’ll let you do that for yuorselves
Sophie: don’t eat before the meal is ready?
Boiler Elf: as i’m not here to tell you what to think
Emilly Shatner-Orr: So…distant ancestral memory of ‘giants’ coming from the mountains, and people had to fast because they knew all their food would go to feed them?
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach finds some strong Transylvanian spirits in storage.
Ceejay Writer: So – fasting, not fasting, gah.
Boiler Elf: only spread my ridiculous conjectures and let yuo form your own folklore conspiracies to tell around the holiday hearth
Boiler Elf: So if you know what’s good for you, leave a large plate of leftovers out for Olentzero, so he does not tear the roof off your house trying to get to all the delicious food you made.
Ceejay Writer: I can’t get behind any tradition that has fasting, it’s so counterproductive to life.
Majak: i agree
Katie: because somebody has anger issues and a big knife
Emilly Shatner-Orr: A cautionary tale
Sophie: and winter solstice must be added in somewhere to the tale?
Boiler Elf: Kevin has been going 20-4 since thanksgiving and his pain levels are down by at least a half. he’s even walking without a limp
Stereo Nacht: Well, eating too much is bad too. So just enjoy good things once in a while! 😉
Nyx Malaspinar: XD
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Good to hear, Herr Elf.
Sophie: yes 🙂
Stereo Nacht: Good for your assistant, Mr. Elf!
Boiler Elf: could be that you eat better food when it has to count too. maybe?
Boiler Elf: at any rate,
Ceejay Writer: Well that’s good! Weird (to me) but good and I’m happy it helps
Boiler Elf: that is my presentation for this year, i hope it sparked your interest
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach applauds
Ceejay Writer: I have a question!
Boiler Elf: and for the writers here, even seeded some prompts
Majak: thank you
Jimmy Branagh appoauds wildly
Boiler Elf: OH!
Boiler Elf: that reminds me
Stereo Nacht: ♩♪♫♬ APPAWS! ♩♪♫♬
Nyx Malaspinar: I love me some new to my ears Folk Horror…I mean Lore
Boiler Elf: Speaking of christmas monsters
Owlie Bonesworth applauds, thank you, very informative
Wildstar Beaumont applauds
Boiler Elf: Who watches Love Death + Robots?
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: The tipbot is over here past the feasting table. Bitte, partake of one and give to the other.
Boiler Elf: season 2 has a delightful new monster to add to the pantheon
Boiler Elf: and, if you have seen it
Boiler Elf: here’s a fun fact about that episode
Boiler Elf: that story was first read on Radio Riel
Boiler Elf: in 2016
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach raises his eyebrows
Stereo Nacht: Is there a tipjar for Mr. Elf?
Boiler Elf: at the Brunel Hall Christmas eve party
Vic Mornington: 😀
Nyx Malaspinar: I just stuff lindens down his Jerkin.
Boiler Elf grins
Boiler Elf: What is wrong with you Malaspina?
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: And who might the writer be?
Boiler Elf: Joachim Heinderman, tho that may be spelled wrong
Boiler Elf: it was read by Mr Underby, and Mr Tenk did the monster voice
Ceejay Writer: Really! I miean Riel-y!
Boiler Elf: Mr Tenk bought it out of his slush pile, and the story never would have been spotted if not for that.
Stereo Nacht: Well, with that, the typist request attention, so good night everybuddy!
Stereo Nacht curtsies
Boiler Elf: tho how it was found, who knows
Majak: good night
Ceejay Writer: G’night Stereo!
Ceejay Writer: That is VERY interesting, Tenk.
Boiler Elf: Fahoo Damooz!
Jimmy Branagh: Noight Miss Stereo!
Wildstar Beaumont: good night Captain Stereo
Majak: Very informative and frightening, Thank you
Boiler Elf: Any last questions for me, as I have many things to do before the big sleigh ride
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Indeed. This was fascinating.
Ceejay Writer: I HAVE A QUESTION?
Boiler Elf: I have many more s
Boiler Elf: DO YOU NOW???
Vic Mornington: LOL
Boiler Elf sideeyes Writer
Wildstar Beaumont: 😉
Boiler Elf: Well? what is it?
Ceejay Writer: YES! Is there a homework assignment?
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach chuckles
Boiler Elf: Egg nog
Ceejay Writer: sighs AGAIN. OKAY.
Vic Mornington: mmmmm eggnog punch
Jimmy Branagh: hehe
Ceejay Writer writes it the heck down on to do list this time
Boiler Elf: Research a possibly toxic food tradtion and let me know how it goes next year. And yo have to eat it too.
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: ‘Possibly toxic’?
Ceejay Writer: You hate me. 😦
Boiler Elf: Lutefisk.. there has to be a way for that to go not right, yes?
Owlie Bonesworth: Is that like eating the puffer fish? and not dying?
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Many
Ceejay Writer: But sure, where’s my grammas recipe box….
Majak: its not right from the beginning
Vic Mornington: 2 cartons of eggnog (or two pints of home made), half a bottle of baileys irish cream, quarter bottle of Madeira Wine, quarter bottle of Tia Maria, half bottle of Warnick Advocaat…guarunteed to knock you out after the 4th glass
Boiler Elf: I hate everyone. You think my people like being enslaved for your annual glee?
Emilly Shatner-Orr: There are those who wouldn’t make it to the fourth glass.
Ceejay Writer: I haven’t gleed at the holidays in years
Boiler Elf: How long is it aged?
Boiler Elf: I think 4 weeks is about the write cure time for egg nog to change to the best flavor. the year old stuff wasn’t that great
Vic Mornington: 😮
Ceejay Writer: That recipe is SO out of my booze budget.
Majak: If i give you a sock will that set you free?
Vic Mornington: i got that recipe from one of the triplet when they was taking me out avatar shopping
Boiler Elf: Here’s the aged nog recipe (text flood to follow)
Dad’s Egg Nog (NPR)
6 large eggs
3/4 cup bourbon
1/3 cup rum (dark is best)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
With an electric mixer, beat eggs until well mixed.
Combine bourbon and rum, and add very gradually to the egg mixture; this should take about 15 minutes. If the booze is added too quickly, it will curdle the eggs by causing the proteins to denature, so take it slow.
Beat in the sugar — about 5 minutes — and store in a glass or ceramic jar or jug in a cool, dark place, but not a refrigerator. Of course you can drink the same day, but our family recipe calls for a month of mellowing. The container should be covered loosely, but you want some air to get in.
1 cup whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup sugar
Whip the cream until almost stiff. Whip in vanilla and sugar.
Stir the base mixture and thoroughly mix into cream.
This nog will be very thick and you may wish to thin it somewhat with milk.
Serve in punch cups with a sprinkling of finely grated nutmeg.
Vic Mornington: ohhhhhhhh traditional, bourbon and rum
Boiler Elf: I surived it
Majak: lots of rum
Ceejay Writer scribbles furiously
Boiler Elf: IT seems to be an american tradition, as the ingredients would only have been affordable to the rich in England
Vic Mornington: yeah eggnog aint as popular in the UK thesedays
Boiler Elf: in the colonies, sugar and rum were cheap, from the triangle trade, and eggs were everywhere as everyone was homesteading
Sophie: I must leave… goodbye 🙂
Boiler Elf: here’s the other recipe i found
Boiler Elf: also colonial
George Washington’s Egg Nog
One quart cream
one quart milk
one dozen tablespoons sugar
one pint brandy,
/2 pint rye whiskey
1/2 pint Jamaica rum
1/4 pint sherry.
mix liquor first, then separate yolks and whites of eggs, add sugar to beaten yolks, mix well.
Add milk and cream, slowly beating.
Beat whites of eggs until stiff and fold slowly into mixture.
Let set in cool place for several days.
Ceejay Writer: I need to leave soon as well, but staying for the recipes!
Vic Mornington: personally i love it, i usually pour half a bottle of bells whiskey in it to give it more of a kick lol
Emilly Shatner-Orr: Somewhere I have a recipe for a milk liqueur, which is essentially raw milk and a vanilla bean in a sealed cask for five years, so….it’s possible…but the concept of ‘aged eggs’ is worrisome
Majak: that sounds lovely
Boiler Elf: I’m going to grab the transcript and get back to work
Boiler Elf: You’ll never drink store bought again
Ceejay Writer: I’m saving it too. Hope to have it all up on the website in the next few days.
Boiler Elf: Thanks for believing in me
Jimmy Branagh: Thanks again Mr Boiler! Great talk!
Vic Mornington: yup, im going back out shopping with the triplets, they know all the good clothing places and i have a wardrobe thats 4 years out of date
Ceejay Writer: Thanks for…. um…..
Majak: thnk you
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Vielen dank, Herr Boiler Elf, and I hope we see you next year again.
Nyx Malaspinar: Indeed
Vic Mornington: still look weird without the hoofs….
Ceejay Writer: Anyway, thanks for the talk! Work on your posture and will see you next year!
Nyx Malaspinar: you can always add some….
Majak: good evening everyone
Vic Mornington: nah, sitcking with normal legs and feet now
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Anyone wish to take home some of the feast for your supper, do feel free.
Vic Mornington: night all!
Jimmy Branagh: Gotta run myself. Noight awl!
Ceejay Writer packes up a doggie bag
Emilly Shatner-Orr: I as well, but this was lovely.
Owlie Bonesworth: I think I learned to not feast and to fast instead!
Jimmy Branagh bows to the Baron and hustles.
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach: Herr Jimmy.
Nyx Malaspinar: Pleasant Evening, Gentlemen and Ladies.
Wildstar Beaumont: good night everyone, and happy holidays !
Emilly Shatner-Orr grabs a slice of fruitcake on the way out
Ceejay Writer: Okay, I’m off myself! Happy Holidays to all.
Baron Klaus Wulfenbach looks at the table, sighs, and leaves it for the urchins to discover.