Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Genesis Chapter 13 and 14

And we're back to the adventures of Abram and his gang. Last time he entrapped  a pharaoh causing unnecessary plaguing. Let's see what kind of hi jinx Abram gets into next!

Chapter 13: Abram, his wife (whose name no longer gets mentioned because who cares?) and Lot leave Egypt and head south.

Abram is still rolling in all his goods from the pharaoh: the silver, the cattle, the she asses, etc. which strikes me as very generous of the pharaoh yet again. I really feel like that guy got a bad deal.

Abram builds more altars because that's the only hobby he has.

Whew, I think we need a bear break from all this excitement. 

Lot has a lot of people of his own which tells me he isn't a kid which is difficult to know because there are no character descriptions and I'm not even sure when you become an adult in the bible because most of them don't start on their adventures until they're about 70 years old it seems.

Abram's and Lot's people are starting to have roommate trouble. There isn't enough space, cattle get mixed up, Lot's people keep using Abram's people's shampoo.

Abram resolves the conflict by suggesting they part ways and Lot can pick whichever part of the land he wants.

Those aren't rainbow caves on the right, it's fire. Just to be clear.

Lot goes for Sodom which would be logical if he wasn't being used to make some sort of moral point about how you shouldn't choose the prettier path or whatever. Abram takes the leftovers in Canaan.

Of course there's a catch. Lot should have known that picking the obviously prettier area would be trouble because Sodom and Gomorrah ends up being Sinnersville and we all know how Lord God deals with places filled with sinners and the bystanders that happen to be in those places.


Chapter 14: 

There's a description of the War of Kings which isn't terribly exciting because there are absolutely no dragons involved.

King Sodom and Gomorrah are involved in the War of Kings. There are lots of names and places listed and the chapter is almost as interesting as begatting chapters.

Lot and his people get caught up in the conflict in Sodom and get kidnapped. When word gets back to Abram, he bravely sends his slaves to go die for his cause.

Abram wins and brings back "all the goods, and also brought again his brother Lot, and his goods, and the women also" notice how things are prioritized in that sentence?

Also why is Lot described to be his brother now? I thought he was his nephew? Is this a different Lot? Are the authors losing track of all their faceless undescribed characters?

The kings of Sodom and Salem meet up with Abram. The king of Salem brings wine and bread to the potluck and blesses Abram and Abram's God friend.

The King of Salem goes on and on about how impressed he is with Abram's ability to win wars and how much he like's Abram's awesome God friend. He even blesses them.

Flattery works on Abram and his God friend so he gives the King of Salem "tithes of all." I looked up the word tithes for you. It means a tenth. Abram's a good man to suck up to.

Sodom offers to let Abram have all the goods in exchange for all the prisoners. Abram says no thanks, he won't take anything that belongs to the king. Abram just takes the people that already belonged to him, not to the king or to themselves, and some snacks for the road.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Gensis Chapters 11 and 12

Last time, the Noah cursing Canaan thing was really bothering me, so I looked into it a little bit. There are some theories circulating on the internet that Canaan or Ham might have taken advantage of drunk Noah in his tent in some way.

If this is actually the case, I take back the mean things I said about Noah's drunk logic. Cursing your date rapists is a totally logical response if that is something you're capable of doing.

I have also heard that the Noah movie has rock monsters.

This wasn't in my edition.

Here is what I'm wondering. Do I have the wrong version of the bible? Am I missing out on the uncensored, sexier, version of the bible? Is my 3 Harry Potter book lengths of a book actually a SHORTENED version? Does someone have the version with rock monsters I could borrow?

Chapter 11:

Everyone on Earth used to speak the same language which was very convenient and helped people to get stuff done efficiently. Because they're so good at teamwork, they decide to build a tower to heaven. God doesn't seem to approve of this efficiency because HE's the efficiency guy. That's HIS thing. Also he probably didn't want humans to be able to just knock on his door whenever they felt like it. He gets to call on people out of the blue for epic God missions not the other way around. So God scatters people and confounds their language.

Begatting happens. Names are listed. Nice names like Arphaxad and Peleg. Names you might want to name your children because you want to give them meaningful literary names. Until one day your child asks you:

 "What does my name mean?"

"It's from the bible. It's very important and literary."

"Yeah but what did Peleg do?"

"He begat."

And that's all you can tell them, because that's all the bible told us. End of Peleg's epic journey.

So more begatting and name listening happens until we get to Abram and not some chick but Sarai! And do you know why Sarai gets her name acknowledged? Because Sarai is barren and she interrupted the begatting train that's why.

Chapter 12: The Abram family lived in Haran which is also the name of Abram's dead brother which is very confusing and required me to read the passage a few times over. So Abram and the gang live in Haran, the place, not the dead brother, until Lord God drops in on his brain to tell him to take his family and get out of his father's house. Abram has to move away but he'll get a nation to himself so it's a pretty sweet deal. Also he gets to be blessed which never ends badly for bible characters. Never ever.

It's all smiles and Happily Ever Afters for these guys. 

So Abram takes his wife Sarai, his dead brother's son Lot, and "the souls that they had gotten in Haran" i.e. slaves, on a road trip to Canaan i.e. Sodomyville.  God says the land belongs to Abram now. Abram shows his gratitude by building an alter and keeps it up by moving to new places and building more alters.

Abram's alter building road trip is interrupted by a famine, so Abram and the gang take a break in Egypt. Abram is a sharp guy and notices his wife Sarai is super fine. So fine that Egyptian men might kill Abram to get a piece. So, the logical thing to do is to tell people that Sarai is merely a sister and let any Egyptian men who might want a piece to go on ahead. That way Abram remains perfectly safe. Sweet deal right Sarai? Oh you don't think so? Guess you shouldn't have been barren then.

Abram and the gang aren't in Egypt very long before the Pharaoh notices just how fine Sarai is and decides to take Sarai into his home. Abram gets a nice set up because he brought such a fine lady to the Pharaoh. He gets "sheep, and oxen, and he asses, menservants, and maidservants, and she asses (superior to he asses), and camels."

The catch is Sarai isn't really a single lady and Lord God doesn't approve of bringing non-single ladies into your home so Lord God lets the Pharaoh know this by sending a few plagues his way. Not for the rape thing but for the adultery thing, that's what really gets Lord God peeved. So Abram and Sarai entrap the Pharaoh and get him plagued. Lovely couple.

I'd like to imagine that the Pharaoh responds with a:

He miraculously doesn't murder Abram and sends the lovely entrapping couple away to continue on their merry entrapping way.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Genesis Chapter 9 and 10

Chapter 9:

God kind of gives the same spiel he did to Adam and Eve about humans getting to rule all the beasts. Again tell that to my cat.

We can eat their meat but we can't gorge on them, abuse them, and we can't drink their blood. Drinking blood is a no no.

Any blood drinking=evil. Looking at you Ms. Meyer. Not getting around that one. You romanticized a blood drinker. I don't care if your vampires adorably and nonsensically dub themselves "vegetarians." I don't care if they're super pretty sparkly angels. I don't care if Edward has honey colored eyes and perfect bronze hair. They still drink animal blood so they're evil too. The end.

God tells Noah's family that he super seriously promises not to drown us anymore and if we see rain that he'll remind us of this promise with a rainbow which is way more adorable than a pinky swear. So remember, if there's a big storm and you don't see a rainbow, God's feeling moody and we're fucked.

It's okay! He only drowned New Orleans this time!

The first thing Noah does when he steps off the boat? Man builds a vineyard and he drinks that vineyard right up.

Noah likes to do his drinking alone, nude, and in a tent. 

Don't look at me when I'm like this.

Noah's son Ham sees his naked drinking father and tells his brothers. His brothers cover Noah up and Noah resents the shit out of it when he wakes up. So he decides that he should really curse his grandson Canaan, the son of Ham.

Let's back up a minute.

Did I miss something?

Was there a deleted scene here?

I guess there must be a deleted scene where Canaan actually does something more offensive then happen to be the offspring of a man who happened to see Noah naked. Oh no? He didn't? Noah's just a little sore that his son Ham saw him in a shameful position so he decides to curse one of Ham's sons at random? Why not all of Ham's sons? Why not some other son? Why does Noah have special cursing powers? Is Noah a witch?

This is why drunk people don't get to make decisions. They shouldn't drive cars, they shouldn't text exes, and they shouldn't curse their own descendants for an indefinite number of generations to come.

Noah blesses his other sons because he really just wants to make a point. Canaan and his descendents have to be the servents of Japheth's family who will...dwell in Shem's tents...I guess.

Noah lives another 350 years, no word on whether or not he ever attends an AA meeting. Probably not, because if his family staged an intervention, he'd curse the shit out of them.

Chapter 10: 
Guess what happens in this one? My favorite thing. More begatting.

Dear Jesus and  James, a word of advice on writing, if you're not going to bother expanding on a character or telling his story in any way, shape, or form, don't bother mentioning him. I don't care who begat who. Even Game of Thrones which has an insufferable amount of nearly identical old white male characters that you know most of barely matter, takes a moment to say like a SENTENCE about the character's hobbies or something. Make a list of houses and descendants in the back of the book if you must, but unless "Madai son of Gomer" does something worth mentioning, leave his name out of the main part of the story, because, quite frankly, I don't care about Madai son of Gomer or Kittim son of Javan or Blah Blah son of Globbity Gloop. I just don't.

I'm going to give you an example of what I'm looking for and improve upon this chapter. I hope the authors of the bible will take my edits into consideration. I'm going to make some shit up about some of the names they mentioned so that they are actual CHARACTERS that we CARE about. Here we go:

As we know Noah has 3 sons: Shem, Japheth, and bad boy Ham. 

You decide who would play who. 

Japheth has some sons who live in Shem's tents. These sons are Gomer, Magog, Madai, Javan, Tubal, Meshech, and Tiras. 

Japheth's tent children started the world's first circus together and all performed different acts. Gomer and Magog were trapeze artists. Madai trained elephants. Javan and Tubal did magic acts. Meschech and Tiras were clowns. They all got along very well and never drank elephant blood or tried to see their drunken grandfather naked because they knew what was good for them.
The fabulous Gomer and Magog.

Madai demonstrating the 1st elephant training methods.
Javan and Tubal
The unsettling Meschech and Tiras

One day a quirky fortune teller, named Zooey, who asks if she can join their circus. Gomer, the trapeze artist fell madly in love with her and they immediately get to begatting Ashkenaz, Riphath and Togarmah. The fortune teller Zooey decided it would be best to name their children by mixing letter blocks in a bag, dumping them out, and naming their children based on whatever order those letters happened to fall in, this is why they have such nonsensical names. Gomer thought this unusual and that they should probably just name the kids after one of his many faceless, meaningless, begatting ancestors, but Zooey was his manic pixie dream girl and he couldn't help but fall for her kooky charms. The three children continued the traditions of the circus. Ashkenaz and Riphath followed their father's footsteps by becoming world class trapeze artists and Togarmah followed after his mother and began palm reading. 

Zooey the fortune teller 
Ashkenaz and Riphath wearing the fig leaf attire of their ancestors

Javan, the magician who could throw knives very well, brought home mysterious quadruplet sons. He never explained who the mother was. He only described her as "some chick." The sons were Elishah, Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim. Javan let Zooey the manic pixie dream girl fortune teller name them in her method. The children all followed in Javan's footsteps of illusion except for Kittim the rebel. It was tradition to do the same circus act as your parents but Kittim longed to train the elephants as well. Kittim was not allowed to do this but set out to search for wild elephants anyway and teaches them to paint and play scrabble. 

Still no elephant scrabble pictures. Get on that internet. 

These are the descendants of Japheth who lived in the isles of the Gentiles which spread out and started up nations and whatnot.

See? You actually sort of care about the begatten spawn of Japheth now don't you? There's love, mystery, intrigue, elephants. Take notes JJ (Jesus and James) because that's how it's done.
Now, we start getting into Ham's sons and Canaan's sons and their sons and so forth.  And wouldn't you know it? It seems that even the kingdoms are begatting. Those kingdoms had baby kingdoms that spread through the land named Asshur which begat Nineveh, Rehoboth, and Calah.  And this just goes on...and on and...on. 

The authors switch right back to Canaan family people-begatting with NO TRANSITIONING WHATSOEVER.
So we're back to Canaan who's descendants are meant to be the bitches of the rest of the family apparently.
Canaan begat Sidon and Heth and...you get the idea. I'm not making anymore family trees, charts, or circus stories. 

The Ham family is thus forth known as the Canaanites which sounds much more impressive than say "The Millers" or "The Browns." The Canaanites sound like the Romney family. They have a lot of kids and land, they're super powerful, the men would all have steely blue "I could kill you and feel nothing" eyes, and they probably wear matching sweaters for their family Christmas cards. 

They would feel NOTHING. 
And now we're onto Shem's begatting. He has lots of sons. And those sons have sons.
The sons of Noah all spread around the earth and start up nations and cities and whatnot. And begat. THE END. Until Chapter 11 where there just better be something other than begatting and lists of male names going on.