The Top Ten Songs of the Roadtrip Soundtrack

Well, here we are, My Wee Readers, the final post of my Holiday Trilogy – and it only took me…at least two months to complete. Wow, that’s a big thought. Anyway, onward. I’ve been planning, seeing as it is one of my more popular posts, to write a follow up to ‘The Writing Lassie’s Top Ten Evil Songs’ – using the suggestions you left in the comments (so if you want to add another suggestion, now’s the time to do it). But before we get into the very worst humanity has to offer, let’s take a step back, and look at the best. In preparation for my family’s epic road-trip into the Highlands, I compiled a playlist of all our favorite songs as soundtrack for our wee adventure. Here are ten of the best.

10. Born in the USA

Sing it Bruce!

Released October 1984 – so a good ten years before I was even born – Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the USA is a commentary on the plight of the Vietnam War Veteran when he comes back home. Once famously used by Ronald Reagan – a man who had clearly never got the joke – on his presidency Campaign. This song has always been a favorite of my family’s, thus it was an obvious choice to include on our road-trip’s soundtrack. I remember listening to this surprisingly rousing tune as we entered the rolling mountain lands of the Cairgorm National Park.

9. You’ll Be Back

You’ll Be Back Bitches!

Sung by Jonathan Groff , who you may recognize from Glee, if like me you are re-watching it on Netflix, this villain song from the Hit musical Hamilton – which depicts the life and death of the founding father Alexander Hamilton – is one of my brother’s favorite songs. Thus it was a perfect choice to help start our road-trip with that theatrical flare that can only come from a former king of England. Sing it away George, sing it away.

8. Donald Where’s your Troosers?

Will someone get this man a pair of trousers?!

Performed by Andy Stewart, this is a very strange song – in which a man wonders around with no trousers, while women ask him where on earth his trousers are. I believe it’s implied that he’s wearing a kilt instead, but it’s not altogether clear – and given the nature of the song, either outcome is likely. In truth its a very infectious song, that won’t leave your head no matter how hard you shake it – I mean, I can’t even remember why I didn’t include it in my Evil Song List to begin with.

7. Don’t Stop Me Now

Freddie Mercury is King

Oh Freddie Mercury, you were truly the King of Rock. Performed by the band Queen, with front man Freddie Mercury singing vocals, many have tried to fathom the meaning of this catchy, up-beat tune. But whether it was a Bisexual Pride Anthem – Freddie was Bi himself after all – an ode, to the front-man’s decodant lifestyle – as the other members of the band claim – or just a fun song, about having a very good time really doesn’t matter to me. Because whatever the case, it is a damn good song to have on a Road trip.

6. Micheal in the Bathroom

I have all the Feels.

Performed by George Salazar, ‘Micheal in the Bathroom’ is a heart wrenching song about betrayal and abandonment from, and I’m just going to say it, one of the strangest Musicals I’ve ever come across – Be More Chill. Okay, stop me if you heard this story before – High-schooler Jeremy feels like too much of a loser to speak to the girl he likes, so after hearing about it from some guy in a bathroom (not Micheal) he decides to take this thing called a SQUIP, to help boost his popularity. What is a SQUIP you ask? Why, a SQUIP is an advanced processing computer from Japan, condensed into pill form. And if you take it with Mountain Dew – don’t ask me why it never really explains – then the SQUIP will connect to you brain and help you to negotiate the terrifying world of pubescent life. Oh, it also shows up as Kenu Reeves in your perception if you don’t change it to someone else… *gasp for air* and that is the basic premise of Be More Chill.

5. I Don’t Know How to Love Him

Mary Magdalene is always a win.

Ah Crucifixion, a far more saner topic to have a musical about. Written by Andrew Loyd Webber, Jesus Christ Superstar tells the tale of the days leading up to Jesus’ death and his subsequent Crucifixion. My family’s not particularly religious, so growing up this was my only exposure to that story that I really paid attention to – which may or may not have caused some strife with my slightly more religious classmates. I mean you mention one time that your favorite disciple is Judas Iscariot and suddenly everyone’s claiming you’re gonna go to hell. Look people, I was eight or nine, Jesus kind of sounded full of himself to my child mind, and Judas had the best songs. Speaking of best songs, this haunting melody is sung by Mary Magdalene played by Yvonne Elliman , as she ponders her confusing feelings for the title character. It truly is a wonderful song to listen to while your driving back home from your slightly exhausting road-trip.

4. Rule the World

Hail to the Ruler of the World

Performed by the band Take That, and featuring in the soundtrack of the film Stardust staring Qweneth Paltro – who was also in Glee, and…other things as well I’m sure – Rule the World is an empowering song of love between two maniacal dictatorships, just trying to keep the populaces in control. What? That’s not what its about…but why is it called Rule the World then? That is a misleading title.

3. Everything is AWESOME

Awesome!!!

Ah, now this is much better – the first song of The Lego Movie is an upbeat tune compiled by a major corporation to lull us into a false sense of contentment so that we don’t notice as they complete their dastardly plan. Both in story and out. Plus I dare you to get it out of your head once you hear it, even just once.

2. Nothing

Best Song Ever

From the Musical ‘A Chorus Line’ this ballad is the sorry tale of a crap, probably boarder-line racist, acting teacher and the young girl who was forced to put up with him…until he died. Sorry, ruined the end there, but it is an awesome song regardless and one I most dearly recommend for any long car ride, particularly if it’s your mother’s favorite song.

1. How Far I’ll Go

The Ocean is alive, I have all the questions

Finally we come to our winner, performed by the amazingly talented Auli’i Cravalho – who was only freaking fourteen at the time of recording – and written by Lin Manuel Miranda of Hamilton fame; ‘How Far I’ll Go’ takes its place as one of the Disney Princess’ ‘I Want’ Songs. Other such contenders are ‘A Dream is a wish your heart makes’ (Cinderella); ‘Let it go’ (Elsa); ‘When will my life begin?’ (Rapunzel); ‘Almost There’ (Tianna) ; and one of my personal favorites ‘Reflection’ (Mulan). Now, why exactly did I just spend a good amount of time listing other Disney songs instead of the one I actually listened to while on my road-trip up to the Highlands? Well, two reasons really: number 1, ‘How Far I’ll Go’ needs no hyping up because its so awesome it speaks for itself – so stop reading this right now, go back up and listen to that wonderful song – and Number 2. for full musical education I believing its proper that all the Disney songs are given a shout out every now and then. I’m just kidding, I have no musical education, I just enjoy them.

Well, here we are at the end my wee readers, if you’ve enjoyed this particular musical trip down memory lane or would like to suggest an ‘evil’ song for next time, leave a comment down below. Also follow me on Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest. Until next time, my Wee Readers, have a Bonny Day.

Advertisements

The Top 4 Adventures I had on my Holiday

Great now that we have measured and ranked the food – now it is time to move on to the rest of the Holiday. And by that I mean of course, the rest of the holiday that I took pictures of – because you know the old saying, if there’s no photo it didn’t happen. We will begin our tale of Adventure up the cold roads of Scotland with a bowl of chili.

1: The First Adventure

The Prodigal Chili Returns

If you’ve read my previous post you already know how much I loved the Chili at Kristie’s Garden Centre – which was our first stop on our elustrius road trip towards the highlands of Scotland – so I won’t wax poetical about it here. I’ll just say that it was the best chili I’ve ever had at a restaurant…of any kind.

Teapots Galore!!!

Before we move on, my wee readers, I would just like to draw your attention up to the walls of Kristie’s Garden Center’s Restaurant. You may find yourself asking if what you are seeing is real. And yes, yes you are indeed seeing more novelty teapots than any person – not possessed of some kind of magical power – could count. So, want to show off you magic chops? Then comment down below with your guesses. Winner gets a Scottish Macaroon.

And now, my wee Readers, we take our first tentative steps into the Highlands of Scotland. Well, technically I didn’t step into the Highlands, I sat in a car and listened to awesome music. But…the view’s pretty spectacular never the less.

Finally a quick stop off at Logie Steading for tea and a look round the second hand bookshop. Before we reach our country lodge/ timeshare and our journey comes to an end.

2. The Highland Wildlife Park

Not a hop, skip and a jump from our timeshare stands The Highland Wildlife Park. Containing what was sure to be some of the most exciting animals ever to be seen on Scottish shores -or at least they had better be considering how much we payed to get in.

Look a bear

Behold, the majestic horse I captured (in picture form at least) in front of our car’s window. Yet, to truly be amazed look beyond that, up on the hill to the left of the big rock in front of the fence – it’s a bear. A freaking polar bear!!

Run!!

Behold the mighty Buffalo – one of the few clear photos I managed to take while driving round the Wildlife preserve. I’m just glad he didn’t charge 😁

Long Live the Tiger King

This Tiger was a showoff – always prowling in front of us lowly humans as if to say ‘yes, I could eat you. But I won’t because I like the attention. So come on, where’s my close up maggots?’ Wow that kind of got intense…moving on.

3: Cairngorms

This statute is to comenarate twenty years of the Cairngorm ski slopes – I think. To be honest I got so distracted by the statue that I forgot to look at the information underneath.

I’m especially proud of this photo – I took it just outside of the Cairngorm’s restaurant, where we had a particular nice bowl of chips and lentil soup.

Look at this one – can you even tell it was taken in modern day? Okay, you probably can but just turn off your brain for a second and pretend.

4: The Fun Garden at Brodie Castle

The Fun Garden at Brodie Castle is a strange experience. It’s made up like Alice in Wonderland – although I don’t remember any unicorns in Wonderland. But correct me if I’m wrong, I’ve never read the books.

We start by going down the rabbit hole

Marked by its very own GIANT BUNNY – there are no words for how awesome that is 😂

Our first stop in the Fun Garden is the miniature of Brodie Castle, which can make you feel like a giant when you stand inside it.

Then a step round the black and white spinning Teacups.

Then we take a turn near the giant’s table and chair. If you close your eyes and listen you can just hear his voice in the distance: ‘Fe Five For Fun, I smell the blood of a Scottish man.’ Joke’s on him, I’m not a man

Finally, our journey comes to an end with a glimpse of Brodie castle, leaving us feeling very small indeed.

Well, that’s the end of it my Wee Readers – thank you for your patience during the many days, weeks, years it took to complete this post. If you enjoyed this parade of holiday memories check me out on Instagram or follow me on Twitter. Until next time my wee readers, have a bonny day.

The Top 7 Vegan Meals I had on Holiday

Well I’m back, my Wee Readers. After 7 days up in the Cairngorm National Park staying at one of the Hilton Hotel’s Timeshares, I have returned with photos, and ideas for blog posts galore. Now, you may be asking yourself, if she had such a spectacular time up in the Highlands…why is she just talking about the food she ate? Well, that could be for one of two reasons.

Reason One: I’ve actually got several blog posts planned, and I’m starting with this one because I’m very tired from my holiday, and it was the easiest to write.

Or Reason Two: My mind has only three modes – Writing, Reading, and Eating, repeat when necessary.

Decide for yourself which sounds more plausible to you .

7. Five Bean Chili in a Baked Potato

We start this onslaught of vegan food-porn with a stop to Christies Garden center situated in the town of Fochabers .  They actually had an entire vegan menu, meaning we could each choose something different –  which for someone who was raised vegan in the North of Scotland, and now lives a good hour away from the more exciting Vegan Restaurants – is still a relatively novel concept. We got to eat different things from each other – and they weren’t all just different forms of chips!!

6. New Vegan Subway Sandwich

Mmmm…subway.

Subway has Vegan Sandwiches now! Subway has Vegan Sandwiches now! Eeeeeh! Sorry, sorry I blacked out with the joy of it. This Sandwich consisted of tomatoes, red onions, pickles, cucumbers, sweetcorn, some kind of nut fillet (but to be honest I’m guessing with that particular filling, I don’t actually know what it was); and my favorite, the jalapenos. I love jalapenos – the more feeling I loose in my tongue the better.

5. Pizza Express Frozen Pizza

I’m gonna get so Fat.

Behold the ever elusive creature that is the Vegan Frozen Pizza – rarer still to have a well known brand stamped on the box. I love this new vegan explosion of choice, I have so many more unhealthy things to eat than when I was growing up. I’m going to get so fat just because I can now !

4. Strawberries & Raspberries

It’s good to be home.

Picked fresh at the Findhorn Foundation – these juicy morsels of fruit are the perfect welcome home from a house that missed us dearly. Now, am I implying that the berries  were lying out like that for us when we got home? That my house has somehow reached sentience enough to go shopping? Don’t be silly, I’m not insane – where would a house possibly buy berries from?

3. Chips & Beans from the Happy Haggis

Chips, Chips, Wonderful Chips!

These chips were pretty delicious considering they were bought from a restaurant that I’m fairly certain was chosen purely for its name. Admittedly ‘The Happy Haggis’ is a very hard name to turn away from, and we’re Scottish – we know what a Haggis really is. That’s about it, I mean what else can I say, they were chips – awesome chips, but its not like they were a Five Bean Chili or anything. Speaking of…

2. Five Bean Chili, but this time with rice.

Chili with Rice!!!!

Run!! It’s the Return of the Five Bean Chili!!!! You may be asking yourself why this portion of Five Bean Chili gets its own allotted space instead of just squeezing in with its predecessor? Could it be that despite coming from the same restaurant, and going down the same gullet, one was widely inferior to the other? Particularly because one of them had been served with a side of coleslaw, because our server hadn’t really been listening when we asked for the Vegan option. I don’t mean to sound bitter, but it cannot be denied that the Chili that came with the side of rice was superior to the one that rode in on a bake potato. Also there was more of it for some reason.

1. Vegan Veggie Breckfast

Best Breakfast Ever!

And finally we reach the end of this little list of vegan gluttony with, what was hand to god, one of the best breakfasts I’ve ever had. The Mountain Cafe located in the town of Avimore boasts an impressive array of vegan items on its menu. However if you’re in the area I recommend you stop in for Breakfast; whether it was the spectacular Potato rosti, or the the hash brown balanced on top of it; the sausage, the tomatoes or even the bake beans, the Veggie Breakfast is the most delicious thing you will ever taste. I don’t know how you make bake beans taste that good, or even significantly different from all other bake beans, but somehow they managed it. And the Mushrooms, oh my God, the Mushrooms…there are no words to describe the mushrooms.

Well that’s the end of it – wow, this took much longer than I thought it would. If you’re interested you can find these photos and many more like them from my holiday, up on Instagram. Or check me out on twitter to follow the procession there. I do have two more holiday related posts planned, but we’ll see how long those take – so, as always my wee readers until next time, have a bonny day.

Adventure Ho!

Behold, My Wee Readers, the glinting waters of a Scottish summer ocean. Gaze upon the footprints left in the warm sand and the shiny gleam of the black rocks before you. The sky is clear and the sun is bright , and for a moment all is wonderful in the world. Now, what is the point of this? You know, other than to show off the fact that I took a really good picture of St Combs beach last week. What has this to do with anything? It doesn’t, I was just distracting you while I finish packing.

That’s right my Wee Readers, I’m going on Holiday. On the 16th of June, I’ll be heading off to the far flung reaches of Scotland for my Adventure – hopefully to collect photos similar to the one above, and not ones depicting a week full of rain. So while they’ll be no new blog posts next week, I do recommend you check me out on Instagram and especially Twitter, as I’ll be continuing to post there frequently all throughout my trip.

Well that’s me said my piece, thus I shall leave you with this image of what hopefully all my food is going to look like on holiday.

Until next time my wee readers, have a bonny day.

The Top Ten Best Greek Gods out there + The Worst One

Or the Wee Lassie’s Most Valiant attempt to be Struck by a Bolt of Lightning

One of my current obsessions is Greek Mythology, specifically the Greek Pantheon. So in a clear sign of some form of latent death wish, here is a list of the Top Ten Best Greek Gods for your reading pleasure; plus the Worst One – because we’ve really got to seal that Lightning bolt in somehow.

So strap in my wee readers, we’re about to get very sacralgious.

10. Aphrodite

Roman Name: Venus

Husband: Hephaestus (divorced)

Lovers: Ares, Hermes, Poseidon, Dionysus, Anchises – and that’s just the ones she got pregnant by.

Kids: Eros, Phobus, Demmos, Harmonia, Pothos, Antero, Himeros ; Hermaphrodite ; Rhodos, Eryx ; Peithlo, The Graces, Priapus; Aenas

The Goddess of Love, Beauty, Desire and Pleasure – it was said in Heiod’s Theogony (188-206) that Aphrodite was born from the severed genitals of Uranus falling in the ocean. Later works such as Homer’s Iliad would try to claim that she was the daughter of Zeus and Dione – which is quite frankly a much duller origin story for the Goddess of Love. I mean, oh my Hades, Zeus cheated on Hera…that’s never happened before.

Jerk Level: 8/10

9. Demeter

Roman Name: Ceres

Husband: None, because Demeter doesn’t need that hassle.

Lovers: Zeus (what was she thinking?), Poseidon ( should we count him? I don’t think that was consensual).

Kids: Persophone

The daughter of the Titans Chronus and Rhea – like most of her siblings Demeter was eaten by her father because he heard a prophecy from his dethroned father, that one of his children would overthrow him. I think I’m beginning to see where all the issues stem from. Demeter is of course most memorable in the Myth of the Kidnap of Persephone where she basically starts the Ice Age – and all subsequent winters – when Hades kidnaps and then refuses to give back her daughter Persephone. I’ll have more to say on that particular Myth later in the post, but regardless of how you interpret that myth, I still think Demeter herself is kind of Bad-ass.

Jerk Level: 6/10 – because she did kill a lot of people with that first winter.

8. Pan

Roman Name: Faunus

Wife: None

Lovers: Syrinx, Echo, Pitys

Kids: Silenos, Lynx, Krotos, Xanthus

God of nature and the wild, shepherds, flocks, and often associated with sexuality – but to be honest what Greek God wasn’t to some extent. Pan’s parentage seems to be a bit of a mystery; there are many conflicting accounts in Greek Myths. Some tales say he’s the son of Zeus (the shock, Zeus had another child); some the son of Hermes, I even heard at least one that claimed he was the son of Penelope wife of Odysseus after an affair with Apollo.

In more modern times Pan’s image has often been associated with the Christian Devil – by stupid people. Seriously guys, the Greek God of the Wild has nothing to do with the Christian Devil – stop saying he does, you’ll hurt his feelings.

Jerk Level: 7/10 – because as much as I like him, he did seem to have a poor understanding of consent

7. Hera

Roman Name: Juno

Husband: Zeus – much, I’m sure, to her eternal regret.

Lovers: None, because she kept her wedding vows, Zeus.

Children: Angelos, Ares, Eileithyia, Enyo, Eris, Hebe, Hephaestus

I think the Hera we know best from Greek Myth is the wrathful and vengeful spouse of Zeus – especially since she continues to try and kill innocent women and children, when really the person she should be gunning for is Zeus. I mean come on Hera, get your priorities straight. That being said when she did like you, she was a good Goddess to have on your side – so long as you didn’t fall out of favor with her, like a certain boneheaded chaser of Golden fleeces.

Jerk Level: 9/10

6. Uranus

Roman Name: Caelus

Wife: Gaia

Lovers: None

Children: The Titans, the Cyclopes, the Meliae, the Furies, the Giants, the Hekatonkheires, and Aphrodite (sort of)

The Son and Husband of Earth Mother Gaia – because the Greek Pantheon would look at the Targaryens and say they were not inbred enough – Uranus is proof that you don’t have to be at all likable in Greek Myths to be enjoyable to the listener. Now true, my favorite Uranus myth is the one where he gets his balls hacked off – but he really had it coming. Plus, I just think his name is funny

Jerk Level: 10/10

5. Nemesis

Roman Name: the same I think.

Spouse: I don’t think she had one – but please, correct me if I’m wrong.

Lovers: Zeus (via rape), Tartarus

Children: Helen of Troy, Clytemnestra, Castor, and Pollux

The Underworld Goddess of divine retribution – in one of the many Greek myths where Zeus is awful, to save herself from his pursuit Nemesis turned herself into a goose. This of course did not stop Zeus, because nothing does – so he turned himself into a swan and mated with her anyway. This led Nemesis to lay two eggs – with two sets of twins inside. One of whom would grow up to be the famed Helen of Troy. Of course other myths claim the children where fathered and mothered by other people – but they’re not on this list, so who cares.

Jerk Level: 5/10 – because she’s just doing her job when she punishes you.

4. Dionysus

Roman Name: Bucchus

Wife: Ariadnes

Lovers: Goddesses – Aphrodite and Aura ; Nymphs – Beroe, Kronois, Nikaia; Mortal Women – Erigone, Althaia, and Pallene; Satyr – Ampelos; Mortal Man – Polymnos or Hyplipuos

Kids: Priapus, Hymen, Thoas, Staphylus, Oenopian, Comus, Phthonus, the Graces, Deianina

The God of Wine, fruitfulness, Parties, festivals, madness, chaos, drunkenness , ecstasy and for some strange reason the theater. Another illegitimate child of Zeus, one myth claimed that Hera killed his mother while she was pregnant with him; so, to save his life, Zeus took the unborn infant and sewed him into his thigh and carried him to term. It’s almost unbelievable – Zeus did something relatively decent.

Jerk Level: 7/10

3. Persephone

Roman Name: Proserpina

Husband: Hades

Lovers: Maybe Adonis, Zeus sometimes (raped obviously) but sources vary

Kids: Melinoe and Zagereus

The daughter of Demeter and her jerk brother Zeus; Persephone was the personification of vegetation and the Goddess of Spring and Nature before she was kidnapped and later married to the God of the Underworld, Hades. After which she also carried the title of Goddess and Queen of the Underworld. Whether her abduction was exactly that, or a mutually agreed upon elopement is a mater up for some debate – but whatever the case, their later marriage seemed to be one of equal partnership. The Greeks feared Persephone as much as they feared Hades.

Jerk Level: 6/10

2. Hephaestus

Roman Name: Vulcan

Wife:Aphrodite (divorced), Aglaia

Lovers: One attempted rape of Athena, and an accendental impregnation of Earth Mother Gaia

Kids: Thailia, Eucleia, Eupheme, Philophrosyne, Cabeiri and Euthenia

Thrown off Mount Olympus when he was born, because Hera found him so ugly. Yeah…not every bad thing she did was provoked by Zeus. Found and raised by nymphs, he returned to Mount Olympus when he was grown and trapped his mother on a golden throne; and demanded the Love Goddess Aphrodite in exchange for Hera’s freedom. He got this – much I’m sure, to his later regret.

Jerk Level: 7/10

1. Hades

Roman Name: Pluto, Dis

Wife: Persephone

Lovers: Possible Minthe, who Persephone later turned into the Mint plant.

Kids: Zagreus, Macaria, Melinoe, Plutus, and the Erinyes

I don’t care what Hollywood thinks of him, on this blog we respect the Lord of the Underworld. Despite modern adaptions portraying him as a Satan like figure – at least I can follow the logic of that misrepresentation – Hades is one of the better behaved of the Greek Gods. He’s certainly the best out of the big three – you know, kidnapping that caused the earth to freeze half the year, aside.

Jerk Level: 6/10

+ 1. Zeus

Roman Name: Jupiter

Wife: Hera

Lovers: We don’t have all day, just assume everyone.

Kids: Also, everyone – heck, Zeus slept with so many people we probably all have a little bit of his DNA in us.

Let’s be honest, all Greek Gods are sort of Jerks – that’s why I included a Jerk Level to each of their bios, felt like a lie without it – but no one quite competes with Zeus. Whether he’s turning into a swan to rape someone; turning his lovers into flies to eat and murder their children; kidnapping implied-underage boys to be his ‘cup-bearer’; screwing his older brothers out of their birthright; or breaking his wife’s heart over and over again – Zeus is singular among the jerks of the world.

Jerk Level: 10000000000000000000000/10

Well that’s the end of it, if you’ve enjoyed this slightly sacrilegious experience check me out on Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest; or if you haven’t already, follow my wee blog. Until next time my Wee Readers…is…is that a Bolt of Lightning heading straight for my head?

The Top Eight People George R. R. Martin Stole from to Make Game of Thrones.

Well, maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration; but we can’t exactly say that the events in a Song of Ice ad Fire don’t bear a striking resemblance to things that George R.R. Martin doesn’t own. Thus to celebrate the end of Game of Thrones here are eight of them. Why eight, instead of ten? Why, because there were eight seasons of Game of Thrones…not because I couldn’t think of ten.

8. The Lancasters and the Yorks

The Lancasters and the Yorks were two cadet branches of the royal house of Plantagenet. House of Lancaster was descended from Henry III’s second son Edmund Crouchback; while House York was descended from Edward III’s fourth surviving son Edmund Langley, first Duke of York.  Both houses produced several English Kings over the years, and were major players in the war of the Roses. A series of battles between claimants to the throne which ended with the ascension of Henry VII to the throne and his marriage to Elizabeth of York.

George R. R. Martin’s Battle of the Five Kings is heavily based upon this war. In fact as we look closer can see parallels between GoT Characters and the members of Lancaster and York. Particularly King Henry VI (King Robert Baratheon), his wife Margaret of Anjou (Cersei), their supposedly cruel son Edward, Prince of Wales (Joffery) and Margaret’s enemy and the King’s once trusted adviser Richard of York, 3rd duke of York (Ned Stark).

This video from TedEd explains it better than I can:

I mean he didn’t even really change the names.

7. Shakespeare

I know, this is a bit of a cheat – but hear me out, before you light your torches. Most of our modern perceptions of the Plantagenet line, the war of the roses, and particularly Richard III don’t come from history itself, but their depiction in William Shakespeare’s plays.

Our closets parallel between GRRM’s and Shakespeare’s works is Stannis Baratheon. Like Shakespeare’s Richard III, Stannis vies for a throne his dead brother once occupied – by calling his nephews illegitimate and trying to take the throne from them. However, unlike King Richard, not only does he not succeed, but his nephews actually are illegitimate. We might also see some similarities between Stannis and Macbeth – both desired to be king, both rely on the prophesies of  ‘witches’; and both end really regretting it – though possibly for different reasons.

6. William the Conqueror

He is often cited as the first official king of his country, despite there being many, many kings before him. He is a conqueror, a descended of royalty from a distant land; and the first of a ‘great’ dynasty stretching through the centuries.

And that man’s name is Aegon Targaryen …what? You were expecting someone else?

5. Empress Matilda & her cousin Stephan I

Once upon a time in a land not so different from our own there lived an old king, who named his daughter as his heir. But you see girls could not be kings – they could be Queens but everyone seemed to forget this – so the throne  went to the princesses’ closest legitimate male relative.

Which pissed the Princess off…so there was a war, and many people died.

This is the story of the English civil war between Empress Maud and her cousin Stephan I. Sorry no Dance of Dragons in this story, but my god that description did sound like something else, didn’t it?

4. Hadrian (Or rather his wall)

I’m a Wildling. What? Haven’t you seen the show, or read the books? According to George R R Martin anyone who lives behind Hadrian’s Wall is a Wildling; and I live in Scotland. What? It was just based on it…you mean to tell me there’s not a giant ice wall separating one part of Britain from the other? I’ve been lied to! Right, where’s my mammoth, I’ve got a wall to scale.

3. The Massacre of Glencoe

In 1691, every Scottish Clan was called upon to renounce the desponed Scotish/ English King James VII (brother to the previous king Charlse II) and swear their alligances instead to King William of Orange (husband to James VII’s daughter Mary). Because of externuiting cercumstances Clan MacDonald was ever-so slightly late with their pledge thus the King’s men degreed that the clan was to bne cut down ‘root and branch’.

By claiming the sacred right of hospitality the soldiers were able to gain access to the castle, since the MacDonald were obliged to shelter them. When the Clan had retired for the night, the soldiers slaughtered them in their beds; several woman and children escaped in the night, but because of the storm outside they soon died of exposure.

Meanwhile, sometime in the early nineties George RR Martin wrote a shockingly toned down version of this tragedy into his Song of Ice and Fire.

2. J.R.R Tolkien

From the medieval setting, the word Warg, the character of Samwell Tarly, to the very R. R. in his name – it all bares a striking resemblance to another fantasy epic author we know well. To be fair, almost every fantasy released after Tolkien’s work steals from him in some way; and Martin certainly doesn’t do it as blatantly as someone like JK Rowling does. That being said, it is still strange that a man who professes to not like things like Fan-fiction would have such great similarities between his work and another author’s .

1.    Bran, Celtic god of Prophecy and Ravens

Finally, in honor of his Royal Majesty King Bran the Broken; First of his Name; King of the Andals; and the First Men; Lord of the Six Kingdoms and Protector of the Realm; I present to you the Celtic god of Prophecy and Ravens…Bran.

Okay, so when you get down to it there’s not a huge wroth of similarities between this particular King and God – I doubt very much Bran Stark will have his severed head used for prophecies; yet it’s still very weird to be innocently researching Celtic gods and to come across a Game of Thrones name. And not even a random one like Ned or John; no, given Bran was the God of Prophecy and Ravens – its very likely that the character who becomes the three eyed Raven was at least partially based on this Celtic Mythological figure.

Now, you might be asking yourself – what exactly did I intend to prove with this bizarre wee list of mine? That we shouldn’t take inspiration from other sources? No, of course not – no one would ever write anything if that were the case. That perhaps Martin should be less critical to those who write in pre-existing worlds considering how little of his own work is wholly original? Hmm, only slightly. Mainly, I think it’s important a to draw attention to the Historical, Mythological and Literary influences of Game of Thrones. Because no matter what you thought of the Final episode – we’re still feeling the loss of it, as we would with any show we loved. But if we dig deep into our own history and mythology we can discover that the story isn’t over. Just because they’re not called Targaryen doesn’t make the Kings any less mad, or the wars they waged any less terrible. When you look at it that way, we don’t even have to wait for GRRM to finish ‘The Winds of Winter’ to get our Thrones on.

If you’ve enjoyed this mad little foray into my mind, follow the wee blog if you haven’t already; or check me out on Twitter or Instagram. Until next time my wee readers from both sides of the Wall…have a bonny day.

The Wee Writing Lassie’s Top Ten Evil Songs

Come on we’ve all heard one some time in our lives – they’re the kind of song that gets stuck in your head. The kind of song that repeats over and over  no matter how much we beg them to stop. The kind of song that can burst out of your mouth at the most unfortunate of times.

These are evil songs, and now because I care about your well-being so much my wee readers – and certainly not because I just wanted to write another blog post and thought this would be funny – I shall now list the top ten worst of these terrible afflictions on the human psyche. 

10. Chim Chim Cher-ee

Taking the lowest spot on our list we have this haunting little ditty from the 1960s adaption of Mary Poppins . It’s been placed at this position because despite its tendency to repeat on a loop inside my skull, and its almost impossible to spell title – I find it mostly unoffensive, at least compared to some of the other songs on this list. Unless you count Dick Van Dike’s cockney accent as offensive, of course.

9. Gilmore Girls theme song

The first of the TV theme songs to grace this terrible, awful list – the memorable theme of the popular tv-show about a mother and daughter with a peculiarly close relationship, hyped folks up for the fast talking dialog and easy-going feeling that made the show so enjoyable. Originally written as a full length song by Carole King, this Theme song will continue to play on within you no matter how long you run from it.

8.Wake me Up Before you go go

Written by George Michel and recorded in 1984 by the band Wham! This song will follow you to the day you die – but there are worse fates. This is certainly one of my favorite songs on this terrible, awful, no-good list.

7. All about that Bass

Written by Meghan Trainor and Kevin Kadish and released on June 30th, 2014 – this song clearly intends to promote positive body image. Which is great message, but I would be able to appreciate much more if didn’t keep bursting out of my mouth at the most inconvenient times…All about that base, ’bout that base…Ahhh!

6. Happy

Written, Produced and performed by singer Pharrel Williams – this is a very well named song. Just listening to it makes you feel all happy inside, thus it is the only song on this list that I whole halfheartedly recommend getting stuck in your head.

5. Crazy Frog – Axel F

Well…I suppose we can make a song out of anything these days. I would be surprised if you hadn’t heard of The Crazy Frog – a Swedish CGI character created by actor and playwright Erik Wernquist in 2003. And I would be even more surprised if you had never once contemplated smothering that blue frog in a fit of rage fulled insanity.

4.Narwhals, Narwhals, swimming in the ocean

Is it just me or are these songs getting…weirder as we go along? Performed by Jonti Picking and released in 2009 ‘The Narwhal Song’ is by far and a way the most random of the songs on this list. I mean what do the lyrics even mean? Why are the Narwhals causing a commotion?!

3.Shake it off

Written by Taylor Swift, Max Martin and Shellback and released in 2014 as the lead single of the album 1989; this bouncy song may not be one of Taylor Swift’s better compositions, but it’s certainly one of the most memorable. Seriously, you’ll be humming this tune till your very last breath.

2. Duck Tales theme song

Yes, well we’ve all been expecting this one…it is the Grandfather of all the evil, stick-in-your-head-right-up-to-your-death-songs to ever grace this earth. Composed by Mark Mueller and performed by Jeff Pescetto for the 1987 series, and by Felicia Barton for the 2017 revival – I chose to put the original up above simply because it was the one that started it all, though both versions are equally catchy. Truly, there should be no song that could top it on a list such as this, so then…why isn’t it at the top?

1. Zip-a-dee-do-dah

You’ll notice that, unlike the others on this list, I haven’t placed a video here for you to easily watch this particular stick-in-your-head song. And the reason why is simple – I don’t want you to, I wouldn’t want anyone to get this song stuck in their head as thoroughly as it has mine.

And the sad thing is, I didn’t even listen to the song and it still got caught in my head.

Back when I was a child, my school had this recital, a contest if you will – the idea was that all of us kids who played recorder (which was everyone, since it was mandatory ) would play a tune, and whoever played it the best would get to move on to violin. Which looking back now makes no sense, since if I’m not mistaken I don’t think those two instruments are related. You’ve probably already guessed the song we were made to learn…that’s right Zip-a-dee-do-dah. From then on that parasite took up residence in my head and has never once loosened its grip, no matter how many of the other songs on this list I hum to try and drown it out. Chim Chim Che-ree has come the closest, but each time I think Zip-a-dee-do-dah has been defeated, it’s always just retreated. Yet, this is not why I’ve given this awful catchy song the top spot.

Truth be told, when I say the other songs on this list are evil I don’t really mean it – I mean they’re catchy, and sometimes very annoying. But the songs aren’t really evil in the true sense of the word; however I don’t think I can say the same for Zip-a-dee-do-dah. For you see the song originated in the Disney film Song of the South, one of the most racist films the company has ever made, which given their back catalog is actually saying quite a bit. So racist in fact that the company has desperately tried to distance themselves from the film, even denying a blue-ray release to it, yet like an unwelcome guest at a party Zip-a-dee-do-dah refuses to simply leave.

Thus ends this terrible, no-good list – if you’ve enjoyed discovering or re-discovering these brain-burrowers check me out on twitter, or Instagram; or follow the wee blog if you haven’t already. If you agree with my list, or think I’ve left one out comment down bellow.

Until we meet again my wee readers, have a bonny day.

 

The inevitable jumping on the Bandwagon post

Second episode in and shit just got real. That’s right people…the white walkers are finally here! After seven seasons of just wandering around they are finally here!!! Woo! Winter has finally come for you bitches!!!

*cough*

Yes, well…as you might have guessed from that exuberant opening, like almost everyone else in the world…I freaking love Game of Thrones. I love it so much I tried to buy the first season on DVD when it first came out, despite it being an eighteen and me being,well, not. So, as you can imagine, I could not wait for season 8 .

And then the first episode premiered…and the internet exploded. Which got me thinking, hmm…I love Game of Thrones too, I can get in on this. I know what I’ll do…I’ll write a blog post. But the question still remained… what kind?

Should I do a review for each new episode? No, I don’t have the patience for that. A rant think piece? But what about? And then it dawned on me – since that very first episode I’ve wanted to know how it would all end…so why couldn’t I give it a guess right here ?

Everyone else has their predictions, so here’s mine : everyone is going to die.

 I doubt they’ll have the White Walkers win, yet one way or the other – everyone will end up dead. It might be fighting the White Walkers, it might be huddling in the crypts of Winterfell; or perhaps at the age of eighty, in their own bed with a girl’s mouth around their cock. Whatever the case they’re all going to die – for you see my wee readers, it’s not the White Walkers that are going to win the Game of Thrones…it’s time.

I predict that when the fighting’s over…we won’t get to see who sits on the Iron Throne. Instead the Writers will fling us forward…to a Westeros where even the name Targaryen has been forgotten.

To a Westeros where the Wall was never rebuilt.

Duffus Castle the Wall
Starring Duffus Castle as the Wall

A place where no one can recall that Tywin Lannister did not in fact shit gold.

Latrine Duffus Castle
A latrine

Where even Winterfell is nothing more than a ruin.

Duffus Castle Winterfell
And Duffus Castle as the forgotten Winterfell

This would be a very different Westeros compared the one we’ve come to know. The people would be very different:

. They’d have cars

.Healthcare

.Planes

.Maybe even fast food?

Vegan Pizza
Vegan Pizza

Perhaps even their seasons would have changed…sped up, until both Summer and Winter could be contained in a single year. And so it would be, until the people of the Seven Kingdoms forgot it had ever been any other way…until they forgot there had ever been a Seven Kingdoms at all.

Easter, Duffus Castle, Westerous
The Easter Celebrations at Duffus Castle as Future Westeros

It’s us…the future of  Westeros is us.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this mad little conspiracy of mine, my wee readers – if you like my photos check me out on Instagram or Pinterest, or follow me on Twitter.

Until next time, wee readers, have a bonny day.

Harry Potter and the Dirty Robe

Or how JK Rowling finally succeeded in retroactively ruining her own books.

Welcome, my wee readers to the first of many rants well thought out think pieces on the Wee Blog.

Let us begin, much like Rowling herself, with a boy on a train.

His name is Harry Potter.

Ah, Harry Potter, that mythic golden goose that managed to ensnare both child and adult readers before…well every franchise under the sun was trying to do that. Like many in my generation I spent a good amount of my childhood reading the words of Ms. Rowling, and getting lost in the world she created. Thus, like many of my generation, and let’s face it everyone else, I was ecstatic to hear more tit-bits from the world of Harry Potter. However, I don’t think it took us very long, relatively speaking, to notice a bit of a trend with this new information.  

She seemed to be trying to retroactively ruin the Harry Potter books.

We all kind of know where it started – with the revelation of Dumbledore’s sexuality. But don’t get me wrong, Dumbledore being gay wasn’t the problem – it was the fact that she chose to reveal it retroactively on Twitter. Why would you do that? Why not just put it in the books to begin with – I mean it doesn’t have to be the focus since its Harry’s story, but it would have been really good to have that representation in the books. To have the leader of the Light be an out and proud Gay man, would have really added something to the story JK Rowling was trying to tell.  But okay…guess we’re just going to put it on social media and collect the praise without doing any of the work for actual inclusion.

Still, that revelation didn’t ruin the books themselves per say, but it did cast a shadow of doubt on the author. Was she really as progressive as she made herself out to be? Or was she just playing the part to court the favor of both the LGBT community and the homophobes? And if so, could we continue to like her books even if she turned out to be a terrible, terrible person? Could we separate Harry Potter from his Author? It’s a questions fans of works written by writers who turn out to be human garbage, have asked themselves since the beginning of the written word. In the end I think it’s a personal choice – and I very much doubt that ‘the Dumbledore is Gay’ revelation ruined the Harry Potter books for many people. After all, it didn’t exactly prove JK Rowling was an awful person, just maybe a little thoughtless in her actions sometimes.

The Next strike – or at least the next strike I remember – came in the form of supplementary material from the site Pottermore (a site I’ve never quite understood the appeal of myself, but many people seem to like so I’ll leave it be). In preparation for her new Fantastic Beast Films, Rowling released a series of short stories detailing the history of magic/wizards in North America and… oh boy, was it a racist slock.  I’m not entirely sure which was worse, the fact that she had written the Navajo Skinwalkers into her text as misunderstood Animagi; or that when she was confronted by Native American readers, she declined to respond and instead let her more rabid fans do the answering. No, no, I’m being unfair…both actions can be awful.

So where does this leave us? Do I think JK Rowling is actually racist – a bit, but probably not consciously; she’s more likely just very, very lazy in her research. Or, and I like this idea the most, this is just another step in her dastardly plan to ruin the Harry Potter series. Think about it, would you really want to read the books of a racist? I know I wouldn’t. Still Harry Potter is such a well written, if slightly flawed in sections, work that even if JK Rowling does turn out to be a terrible person and not just a very, very daft one – it isn’t a difficult thing to separate her from the work. You can still enjoy the books and the films, even if you dislike the author.

It’s what I had to do when Rowling stuck her ‘terribly large nose’ into Scotland’s business – and then refused to talk about it like an adult. Still that was back in 2014 and I can be an adult, who cares if she described the SNP as Deatheaters, and the head of Scotland’s Labour branch – one of the leaders of the ‘No Thanks’ Campaign – as a ‘good little Gryffindor’. It’s not as if it was an important political situation, that would affect the lives of almost everyone in Briton and deserved to be treated as such…oh wait.

Anyway, the point I was trying to make before that trip down painful memory lane was, that all these mistakes – and there have been many more that I haven’t mentioned here – all lead to one solid explanation:

She’s doing it deliberately.

She wants to ruin the Harry Potter series for us.

 By now you must be thinking, Wee Lassie, how have you come to this ridiculous conclusion? When there are so many more sensible ones on offer: maybe she’s just not very good at Twitter, maybe she’s just lazy, or maybe she’s just a terrible person. All excellent well thought out conclusions, my wee Readers, but all proven wrong by one new fact about the wizarding world that Rowling released relatively recently at time of writing.

Before they had toilets, Wizards would shit themselves and then just magic it away.

This has ruined Harry Potter for me…I will never again be able to take any books or films set in the wizarding world seriously. And I cannot believe that an author who wrote something so profound as the Harry Potter books, could reveal something that stupid about her own world with sincerity…ergo… this must be a deliberate campaign to sabotage her past success.

Now, why would she do that? Possibly because none of her other forays into writing have been as universally loved as Harry Potter – pigeonholing her as only the writer of Harry Potter in the public’s eyes, instead of a successful author in her own right. Perhaps she’s simply trolling us for the giggles. Or maybe I’m just seeing conspiracies where there’s really only a shitty person.

What do you think?

If you enjoyed this little foray into the frightening world of my mind, check me out on Twitter or click the follow button on my Wee blog if you haven’t already.

Until next time, my wee readers, farewell and have a bonny night.