Friday, March 6, 2009

Beware the Ides of March & idle thoughts

Did this rune stone mark the final resting place of Fram the First?

This thrilling saga may end in Minnesota ....

Many people know the story of the Kensington Rune Stone. It was found in 1898 by a Swedish farmer, Olof Ohman, near Kensington, Minnesota, and is purported to be the record of a Scandinavian expedition from Vinland westward into the heartland of the American continent.

Here is a version of the generally accepted translation of the runes carved into this stone:

[we are] 8 Goths (Swedes) and 22 Norwegians on a journey of discovery from Vinland to the west we had camp by 2 skerries a day's trip north from this stone we went and fished one day after we came home we found men red with blood and dead. AVM save from evil have men at the sea to look after our ships 14 day's journey from this island year 1362

Here is a version of a newly-completed translation of the runes carved into this stone:

[we are] 8 Goths (Swedes) and 22 Norwegians on a journey of discovery from Vinnie's cabin after trying to sack Rome we had camp by 2 skerries a day's trip north from this stone we had fish fry and beach party one day after we came home we found Fram the First had been left behind with the Skraelings AVM save him from himself have men at the sea to look after our ships 14 day's journey from this island winning lottery number 1362

Now then. There are many who believe this stone to be genuine and many who do not. Needless to say, being directly descended from Fram the First, I have absolutely no doubt as to its authenticity. Just to engage in theory for a moment, perhaps the disappearance of Fram the First is directly related to the accounts of blue-eyed, blonde-haired, Mandan Native Americans. These accounts, of which there are a few, arose from the French fur traders who penetrated the region in the early 18th Century. Mandan "bull boats" and lodges have design similarities to Scandinavian counterparts. Just possibly, Fram the First was the first, and found eventual happiness with a Mandan bride along the banks of the Missouri River.

On a more ominous note, there has been speculation that the Kensingson Rune Stone was more than a simple message left for posterity. It might have been placed to mark the gravesite of Fram the First. Rumors surfacing around Norway a few years after the sack of Sarzana in Italy were that Fram the First met his end shortly before his 28th birthday while trying to lead his merry band of raiders home. The date, March 15, was suggested as his final day upon the surface of the earth and his first day beneath it. Even more chilling was the suggestion that he was assassinated by disgruntled Swedes, who wanted his gold and were jealous of his seafaring skills.

Furthermore, it is well known in literary circles that no less an author than William Shakespeare was aware of this tale regarding Fram the First's demise, and was torn about which assassination he would commit to writing: Fram's or Julius Caesar's, since they both happened on the Ides of March. We all know which death Shakespeare chose to memorialize in the end. Personally, I think Shakespeare made a bad decision.

Just as a precautionary move, we will continue to examine archaelogical and other records in case still more information might become available regarding the saga of Fram the First.

Random things about things ....

I carry two cell phones. (Sometimes, I forget to carry two cell phones.) One is for plain stuff, where the number is known to half the population between Canada and Mexico; one is for personal stuff, where the number is known to few. The one for plain stuff has a loud, straight ring. The one for personal stuff sings out, "Don’t Cry," by Guns n' Roses for its ring.

I stopped at a music store yesterday. I looked at and priced guitars. Man, that would be a kick. I'll see how I feel about it next fall when the November gales confine us seafarers to port. Other than for writing, I'm pretty much ambidextrous. From which side should I learn to play a guitar?

I have a friend who has been to 23 Bob Dylan concerts. She and her eventual husband followed him around the country the summer after they graduated from college, back in the 1990s, just to experience the event in different places. Such an adventure would be fun, wouldn't it? But, which band would be worth listening to that many times these days?

I am not looking to escape life, rather to throw a noose around it, gather it in, and put together the material for a new run at it. A thousand jobs in a thousand places will not happen, but there is every reason to roll the dice again and no reason not to.

I do want to learn how to do the Tango, and to do it with the right person, in the right place and with the right people on the floor doing it along side of us. No phonies allowed. A blogger in Poland who calls himself Epicurious wrote this a few days ago: "Dancing is the most intimate self-dialogue. When we dance, we drop our ego and freeze the moment of time to be in the now. We move to the rhythm of our heart while listening to the whispers of our soul." I think he got it exactly right.

Stepping up to the plate, in a manner of speaking, I began making a calendar. I have commitments I plan to keep in April, May and June, which means Independence Day would be a reasonable date to make a jump. That seems like a very long time from now, but at least the days are getting longer and the air warmer.

Music Note: Listening to Cream ....
Specifically, "Strange Brew / The Very Best of Cream" ....
("White Room" & "Sunshine of Your Love")


Katy said...

The Ides of March through to Independence Day - a period of time perhaps henceforth to be known as "a Fram".

I think WS made a poor choice too. Julius Caesar was overly paranoid for a start. I doubt those rampaging Scandivs troubled themselves with such trifles.

I really enjoyed your post today Fram, thank you.

Fram said...

I like that idea, Katy.

Fram n. (1.) The measure of time between the Ides of March and Independence Day, commonly used as a period of preparation before blast off.

As for paranoia, I had to look the word up in the dictionary to see what it meant. Never heard of it before.

Thanks, for being here and for reading.

Piper .. said...

Oh Fram, 'Dont Cry' is one of my fav G n R songs! So is 'Patience' and Sweet Child Of mine... :):)
You know, I was so dying to go to a live Dylan concert. He was here in the Twin Cities this past November. Me and The G ofcourse got the tickets in advance, along with tickets to a Joan Baez concert(I wonder if it was pure coincidence that both of them were performing in the same place within a week).. But guess what? i had to return back to India because my Dad was diagnosed to have metastatic prostate cancer.:(:( So I missed the concerts after all! Wonder if I shall ever get a chance to see them perform live again..
And this is just off-track, but do you like to read Ginsberg?

Fram said...

I hope you do get the chance, Piper. Too bad you missed the concerts in the Twin Cities, but family comes first.

I've seen Dylan twice, but never Baez. I think I like just about every song by Guns N' Roses.

To be honest, I never was a fan of Ginsberg. However, I did have a chance for a brief one-on-one interview with him early in my newspaper career and late in his "bit-of-everything" career. He was speaking at a university in a city where I happened to be working at the local newspaper. He was tired, and not very talkative.

Something special ....