Repost: Ruminations on Ashputtle

Everyone knows this story, right? Wrong!

I’m not feeling well today. This is a repost of something I wrote back in September of 2007:

One of the books I bought at the used bookstore in Eugene, OR was a collection of the Brother Grimm’s fairy tales. I’ve been flipping through the pages randomly looking for fodder and boy is there a lot of it. Either living in the 18 century was much more surreal than it is in the 21st, or the Brothers Grimm knew some sick fucks. Take for instance that most famous of disneyfied story, Cinderella, except her name isn’t Cinderella, which at least sounds pretty, and really what 5 year old, No, what grown person raised in a first world country knows what a cinder is? So you can ignore where her name comes from. The “ella” adds a little sophistication to the name. Ashputtle though? Nothing attractive about that name, I can’t think of a worse name than Ashputtle, Ingrid and Gretchen are pretty bad, but Ashputtle? Worse name ever!

So the story starts with a rich man’s wife dying. The dying mother tells her daughter that she should pray to God for anything she might need and He and herself would watch over the girl. We never learn her real name. The rich man remarried, having a nice wife must have been really boring because he married a crazy bitch. Who of course had two daughters who also happen to be crazy. Crazy is just the beginning though, all three of these women are also vindictive, shallow, spiteful, on and on. The two ugly girls in the Disney movie don’t come close to what these two were. Worse than this though is the apathetic father, who does nothing to protect his first daughter?! Where is this man? When his daughter is forced to pick food out of the ash in front of the fireplace, and then forced to sleep there and wear the same clothes over and over? The man is pretty much a non-event. I guess it is true that Men will do anything for a little tail… Sigh. He does provide a branch of the first tree he brushed against on one of his trips, which Ashputtle takes and plants on her mothers graves. She waters the branch with her tears and it grows into a tree, which she visits everyday. The birds that live in her tree provide her with anything she wishes for. Which is nice I guess, too bad she never wishes to get out of her shitty life. Which just goes on and on… Until the prince of the realm holds a ball to find the most beautiful woman in the land, who will become his wife, because this is how royalty finds its next member… Do you see any beautiful people in the House of Windsor? Of course not, because every royal is inbred. Their the human equivalent of show bred dogs, and about as clever which is apparently why they’re all still swimming in the same stinking, shallow genetic pool, common blood would corrupt it. It is nice to see that someone besides fundamentalist Christians are sticking to obsolete ideas… That is a completely different subject though, back to the folktale.

The Prince throws a ball, the step sisters get Mommy and Daddy to spend ridiculous amounts of money on them so that they can impress his Highness. Ashputtle though can’t go because she looks like a extras reject from a made for television Dickens’ drama. Lucky for us readers Step-Mom is crazy and though she has no intention of letting Ashputtle go, for all she knows they Prince has some sort of dirty slave girl fetish, she pretends that if Ashputtle can complete impossible tasks she may go. So she dumps bags of dried lentils on the floor and tells her she has to pick them all up. Then the stepmother disappears confident that there is no possible way her step daughter can collect them all, having all the confidence of a James Bond super villain. Ashputtle has the birds clean up the mess and takes it back to her step-mom, who now dumps two bags and tells her to clean up, again she leaves?! Again the birds save the day, again Ashputtle is hot down. Then everyone goes off to the ball leaving Ashputtle at home. Ashputtle goes to her tree and cries and through the magic of trees that grow on your mother’s grave, a beautiful dress and fancy shoes fall down and she goes off to the ball, where she has a grand time and makes the prince fall in love with her, it gets late, Ashputtle wants to go home so she runs away. Prince follows but loses her, this whole thing repeats itself two nights in a row, each time Ashputtle gets a fancier get-up, each time she escapes, the third night Ashputtle loses one of her shoes because the stairs were covered in pitch. The prince shows up at the house of Ashputtle, cause he knows she lives there, he followed her twice to it before she disappeared…

At the house he tells the Mother and Father that he is going to marry one of their daughters if the shoe fits, which is gold by the way not glass (both being equally ridiculous as choices for cobblers). The eldest step sister tries it on first, and you know it doesn’t fit, what you don’t know is that crazy step mother tells her own flesh blood to cut her toe off?! “You won’t need to walk when you’re queen”. So she does?! I don’t care how much I love my mother I’m not cutting myself just because she told me so, even if I do get to be queen! (Don’t read in to that statement). So now the shoe “fits”, the prince takes the girl away to the palace but on the way those birds tell the Prince to look at the his bride to be’s foot. He sees the blood and turns around. Wash rinse repeat with the younger step-sis, except cut your heel of this time. Now the prince wants to know who is left, no one the father says and now I’m quoting from the actual text, “There’s only a puny little kitchen drudge that my dead wife left me. She couldn’t possibly be the bride.” Again, give this man Father of the Year award!

So the Prince and Ashputtle get married, and the step-sisters get their eyes picked out by birds at the wedding, beautiful. I love how at the end the story tries to teach a lesson, their eyes were picked out for being false and wicked… Nothing is said about the step-mother and father, so I guess being piss-ass poor parents is okay, in fact it should probably be rewarded. Just don’t try to cash in on your step-sister becoming Queen after you were mean to her, cause then you lose your eyes. Recap: shitty, scarring, permanently damaging parenting is okay. Trying to mooch off of the in-laws eyes PECKED OUT BY BIRDS!!

Gotta say I love that message.

Ruminations on Ashputtle

One of the books I bought at the used bookstore in Eugene, OR was a collection of the Brother Grimm’s fairy tales. I’ve been flipping through the pages randomly looking for fodder and boy is there a lot of it. Either living in the 18 century was much more surreal than it is in the 21st, or the Brothers Grimm knew some sick fucks. Take for instance that most famous of disneyfied story, Cinderella, except her name isn’t Cinderella, which at least sounds pretty, and really what 5 year old, No, what grown person raised in a first world country knows what a cinder is? So you can ignore where her name comes from. The “ella” adds a little sophistication to the name. Ashputtle though? Nothing attractive about that name, I can’t think of a worse name than Ashputtle, Ingrid and Gretchen are pretty bad, but Ashputtle? Worse name ever!

So the story starts with a rich man’s wife dying. The dying mother tells her daughter that she should pray to God for anything she might need and He and herself would watch over the girl. We never learn her real name. The rich man remarries, having a nice wife must have been really boring because he married a crazy bitch. Who of course had two daughters who also happen to be crazy. Crazy is just the beginning though, all three of these women are also vindictive, shallow, spiteful, on and on. The two ugly girls in the Disney movie don’t come close to what these two were. Worse than this though is the apathetic father, who does nothing to protect his first daughter?! Where is this man? When his daughter is forced to pick food out of the ash in front of the fireplace, and then forced to sleep there and wear the same clothes over and over? The man is pretty much a non-event. I guess it is true that Men will do anything for a little tail… Sigh. He does provide a branch of the first tree he brushed against on one of his trips, which Ashputtle takes and plants on her mothers graves. She waters the branch with her tears and it grows into a tree, which she visits everyday. The birds that live in her tree provide her with anything she wishes for. Which is nice I guess, too bad she never wishes to get out of her shitty life. Which just goes on and on… Until the prince of the realm holds a ball to find the most beautiful woman in the land, who will become his wife, because this is how royalty finds its next member… Do you see any beautiful people in the House of Windsor? Of course not, because every royal is inbred. Their the human equivalent of show bred dogs, and about as clever which is apparently why they’re all still swimming in the same stinking, shallow genetic pool, common blood would corrupt it. It is nice to see that someone besides fundamentalist Christians are sticking to obsolete ideas… That is a completely different subject though, back to the folktale.

The Prince throws a ball, the step sisters get Mommy and Daddy to spend ridiculous amounts of money on them so that they can impress his Highness. Ashputtle though can’t go because she looks like a extras reject from a made for television Dickens’ drama. Lucky for us readers Step-Mom is crazy and though she has no intention of letting Ashputtle go, for all she knows they Prince has some sort of dirty slave girl fetish, she pretends that if Ashputtle can complete impossible tasks she may go. So she dumps bags of dried lentils on the floor and tells her she has to pick them all up. Then the stepmother disappears confident that there is no possible way her step daughter can collect them all, having all the confidence of a James Bond super villian. Ashputtle has the birds clean up the mess and takes it back to her step-mom, who now dumps two bags and tells her to clean up, again she leaves?! Again the birds save the day, again Ashputtle is hot down. Then everyone goes off to the ball leaving Ashputtle at home. Ashputtle goes to her tree and cries and through the magic of trees that grow on your mother’s grave, a beautiful dress and fancy shoes fall down and she goes off to the ball, where she has a grand time and makes the prince fall in love with her, it gets late, Ashputtle wants to go home so she runs away. Prince follows but loses her, this whole thing repeats itself two nights in a row, each time Ashputtle gets a fancier get-up, each time she escapes, the third night Ashputtle loses one of her shoes because the stairs were covered in pitch. The prince shows up at the house of Ashputtle, cause he knows she lives there, he followed her twice to it before she disappeared…

At the house he tells the Mother and Father that he is going to marry one of their daughters if the shoe fits, which is gold by the way not glass (both being equally ridiculous as choices for cobblers). The eldest step sister tries it on first, and you know it doesn’t fit, what you don’t know is that crazy step mother tells her own flesh blood to cut her toe off?! “You won’t need to walk when you’re queen”. So she does?! I don’t care how much I love my mother I’m not cutting myself just because she told me so, even if I do get to be queen! (Don’t read in to that statement). So now the shoe “fits”, the prince takes the girl away to the palace but on the way those birds tell the Prince to look at the his bride to be’s foot. He sees the blood and turns around. Wash rinse repeat with the younger step-sis, except cut your heel of this time. Now the prince wants to know who is left, no one the father says and now I’m quoting from the actual text, “There’s only a puny little kitchen drudge that my dead wife left me. She couldn’t possibly be the bride.” Again, give this man Father of the Year award!

So the Prince and Ashputtle get married, and the step-sisters get their eyes picked out by birds at the wedding, beautiful. I love how at the end the story tries to teach a lesson, their eyes were picked out for being false and wicked… Nothing is said about the step-mother and father, so I guess being piss-ass poor parents is okay, in fact it should probably be rewarded. Just don’t try to cash in on your step-sister becoming Queen after you were mean to her, cause then you lose your eyes. Recap: shitty, scarring, permanently damaging parenting is okay. Trying to much of of the in-laws eyes PECKED OUT BY BIRDS!!

Gotta say I love that message.

Fairy Tales, part 2: Hansel and Gretel, violent street thugs.

Who doesn’t love this quaint fairy tale that shows children overcoming adversity and sticking it back at the adult world. It’s just so tragic as well. Their evil step-mother bitches about having to feed these kids over and over. I mean they never stop eating! God, it’s like they’re growing or something. Their father, a poor wood-cutter, finally succumbs to her endless demands and abandons them in the middle of the forest. Hansel and Gretel though are smart cookies and had been eavesdropping on their parents conversations. So they knew what was up and left a trail of pebbles to find their way back home. Go Kids! This is repeated again, but for some reason this time they don’t have rocks, they only had bread. They leave a trial of breadcrumbs but every selfish animal in the forest just eats their way back to safety. Well that sucks. They wander around in the woods for awhile until they find another house, this isn’t any house though, it’s gingerbread house!? Sweet! Wait… a witch lives in it and she captures the two of them. She starts fattening up Hansel while making Gretel her slave. Hansel tricks the witch that he isn’t getting any fatter, fed up with waiting she tries to cook his sister, there is a struggle, the witch falls in the pot. Bam! problem solved. Gretel frees her brother, they find a bunch of gold and jewels in the witches house. They then leave the house and find their way back to their own home. Daddy is so happy to have them back, even better while they were off in the woods their stepmother died! Score! Happy Endings all around.

But Wait!

What the Fuck is going on in this thing? If I was a poor wood cutter and I had two “great” kids and one harpie of a wife. Why not ditch the ball and chain? She eats just as much as the kids do, leave her in the woods. Food shortage solved and now he can go out at night with friends. I can guarantee you if this woman couldn’t stand her husbands children, she wasn’t going to tolerate his loser friends.

Next the children. Innocent Hansel and Gretel. No, these a wicked kids. They eavesdrop, trespass, vandalize, murder, and then robbery. My guess is that their stepmother wasn’t upset about them eating all the food, she probably feared for her life.! Violent thugs living down the hall from you and their father justs sits. He let’s them get away with everything! You can’t just come up to someone’s house and start eating i!? It’s not theirs! The witch had every right to capture these kids. They were on her property, not only that they were destroying her house! What would you do if two hooligans jumped your fence crossed your lawn and then started taking chunks out of your home? You’d call the police, or you’d shoot them, But if you were an old lady, who’s lived alone in her gingerbread house for ages and is maybe a little gone, you’d capture and decided to eat them, perfectly reasonable. Another point, why the hell would animals eat a trail of lousy bread crumbs when there is an entire house made out of candy just sitting in the middle of the forest! Fuck crumbs! I want cake, and so do wild animals. Everything wants cake.

I’ve already stated that the old lady was crazy, why else would she live in the middle of no-where in a house made of food which is fool of treasure and then try to it the stringy runts who deface your property? With that kind of loot she could be living the high life in the city, if she still wants children there are plenty of street urchins, how often do kids get lost in the forest? How often do they stumble upon your tiny house? I bet she put up signs. How else would anything find your elaborate, completely inefficient child trapping home? This old lady could learn some pointers from pedophiles, they just use their shitty internet connections and beer. Besides prepping kids sounds too complicated and involved, I’d just have shot them and made a normal dinner.

They get back home after destroying this old lady’s life to find out that their stepmother is dead as well. What great luck. In the real story though it wasn’t a step mom it was their normal mom. So what does that mean? “Scholars” think that the mother and witch are the same person. If that was the case then I can only say this, that is one dumb fucking woodcutter… At least there weren’t any pedophile dwarves, though they could have livened it up a little.

Randomness…

Had a slight break-down tonight after getting back from work. Why, you ask? Mostly because I have no idea what I am doing with/in my life. It’s the truth, I feel drawn about 12 different ways, but I lack the motivation energy to go down any of these paths. As I sit here typing I’m asking myself when did I become so apathetic? Is this even apathy? Am I just lazy? Why am I writing boring stuff no one wants to read about? Did Snow White ever get with any of those dwarves? Were the dwarves gay? Was Snow White butch? I have to imagine a girl raised by seven gruff, smelly, half-men being really really butch. The farthest thing from a fairy tale princess I can imagine. Wearing cast off clothes, belching and cursing. Not to mention, bathing irregularly. Even with all that she was still prettier than her wicked step-mother? If that is the case the old hag must have been a real piece of work?! Why did a King, who could have any woman he wanted, pick a hideous (psychotic, shallow and vain too) hag for a wife? Maybe she had really good parenting skills? When of course it came to children other than Snow White…

You should check out the little blurb they have on the Snow White story over at Wikipedia. Follow the link because if you just try to skip to it in Firefox through the address bar it takes you straight to the page on Disney’s Snow White. In the original story the evil queen, was forced to wear heated iron shoes and then dance until she collapsed dead! That’s pretty fucked up… not that killing a child just because she looks better than you isn’t… Also the mirror started saying that Snow White looked better than the queen after Snow White turned seven!? Who thinks seven year olds are hot? According to Wiki, seven was the age a girl became a maiden. So all those maidens you read about in old books and fairy tales? All the beautiful princesses that are being romanced by and married to Princes? They are all jail bait. And those Princes? Pedophiles. Someone out there is saying it was a different time and a different place, yadda, yadda, yadda. If that is the case then there is no such thing as pedophilia. It’s just a cultural more, a subjective decision made at random. And we can’t judge them.

Another interesting note is that in most tellings of the folk tale, Snow White doesn’t end up with dwarves. That is only in the German version that the Brothers Grimm decided to write down. In all those other version it’s not some species of half-men that might not be attracted to the most beautiful maiden in the world… it’s a band of robbers. Desperate, on the lamb robbers. Are you telling me these “upstanding men of strong moral fiber” are going to respect (as a woman) the hottest piece of ass in the world, that just happened to be hand delivered to them, no strings attached? I don’t think so, which means in this lovely fairy tale, we have the first recorded pedophilic gang-bang story for children, I’m guessing it is the only one too.

And to end it in the oldest known writing down of this children’s story, it isn’t the step-mother. Nope it’s Snow White’s very own flesh and blood mother. This pillar of maternal duty doesn’t need a huntsmen either. Nope she can do her own dirty deeds. Taking her seven year old daughter into the woods to pick flowers and leaving her there. Not being a to give in either, after she discovers her daughter didn’t die. She goes back to finish the job. Once by strangling her (using a corset), then by using a poisoned comb, and then the poisoned apple. Third times a charm.

Maybe she did deserve to dance ’til she died as her feet slowly cooked in red hot iron shoes.

Oh, and did I mention that folk tales totally kick ass. I could so return to this topic over and over.