Tuesday, August 29, 2006
I Was Born a Haggedorn
Where, exactly, is Iceland, anyway?
I wish my surname were ‘Haggedorn’… if it were, perhaps my mom would have named me Thor or Gunter. Now, there is a writer’s name. Gunter Haggedorn… sorta has a ring to it, don’t you think?
I can see the dust cover on my first novel, Terror in Nordhurland. Then, underneath the title, James A. Michener would have written, “One American’s epic struggles to overcome the indignity of life in a foreign land with neither money nor the ability to speak the language. Armed only with a can of Sterno and a rusty pair of vise-grip pliers, Haggedorn regains his dignity and creates a force for social change while living in the dumpster behind a downtown Reykjavík fishhouse/brothel.”
Yea… what could have been…
Oh, well, maybe in my next life.
It is my utmost desire to bring peace to the world, but first I must find the man who stole my vise-grips. I will hunt him down or my name is not Thor-Gunter Haggedorn. Not that you would care—you’ve always shown a depraved indifference toward all things mechanical—but, I assure you, there will come a day when your fortunes, too, will revolve around the huge, spinning wheel that is Thor-Gunter Haggedorn’s existence. Even as you now walk self-assuredly down the streets of downtown Reykjavík broadcasting your unenlightened, pusillanimous contempt for all creatures big and small, it shall come to pass that the high shall find their yins wrapped hopelessly around the yangs of the low, and only the virtuous shall continue to spin on the ether-wheel. If it is you who absconded with my vise-grips, I offer you the advise of the sages: Righty-tighty, lefty-loosey.
I shall say no more, for to do so would risk abandoning my principles, usurping the education and enlightenment derived from onerous months of dumpster dwelling. Admittedly, it is tempting to lash out at humanity’s rejection of even its most basic tenets. However, to do so would approximate a posture taken by the pulpit’s best car salesmen.
For it is written that a can of sterno more easily passes through the gastrointestinal tract of a puppy (even a good-sized puppy, perhaps a boxer or Labrador retriever, and possibly even a St. Bernard, if it is less than six months old and has no glandular hyper-activity diagnosed) than a man who steals another’s vise-grips enters the kingdom of Thor-Gunter Haggedorn.
So, if it is you who removed them from my pocket while I endured the slumber only a man who has just imbibed four liters of Kleisthoffen blanc can possibly understand, simply return them. I promise I shall be lenient if you show contrition, pay the fine, and swear under the penalty of eternal sobriety that you shall never again rummage through my domain. Remember, I am not a vengeful man.
In fact, not only am I not vengeful, I am outwardly placid. Had I chosen not to communicate with you, there is every probability that you wouldn’t know that I am an Ásatrún priest or Golthi. Chances are, you’ve no familiarity with my religion, but if I told you I were a Wiccan, Pagan, or Celtic Druid, your search compass set for intellectual enrichment would be headed in the right direction. I’m also called a Heathen, although I tend to shy from the description due to its less-than-noble connotations. The term implies non-enlightenment in its barest sense, and I assure you nothing could be further from the truth. Let’s see you go out and become a priest whilst domiciling in a dumpster in lower downtown Reykjavík. I’m one plenty-smart dude, so don’t try to put me down or I might have to go upside your head with my vise-grips. That is, if I can catch the son-of-a-bitch who stole them and bring him to justice. Thor-Gunter, get a grip! You’re a bigger man than this.