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The “Boys of Marathon, the greatest generation”. They created the golden age of Athens, the peak of Sparta’s power, and a short freedom from the terror of the gods for the rest of Greece. But they were also but the prelude to a conflict within Greece. Their children would bear the brunt of the coming Peloponnesian War and the “in the moment” blame, but with the stunning victory the Greeks made over the Persians, and the unity and commaradie they experienced with each other at concerts of the touring proto-metallic band Red-Red, why, just why? How could Greece have turned from pop-love to pop-hate so quickly?  Though Thucydides attempts to downplay their effect, the only reasonable answer is that an action of the gods sent them into bitter collusion or “at each other’s throats” as Dr. Jones translates the Iliad’s opening. But it was not just a typical interference of the Greek gods in a typically free and fair peace. For Spike, the god which now is Andrew willed it, has influenced the course of mankind in his attempts to bring peace, revelation, and his very presence to men specifically through the power of food.

Although the most ancient of the gods, the “most underlying and transcendental” according to the Evangelium Andreii. Spike alone of them was unknown to the Greeks. He regretted this from his dormitory throne room on Olympus and wanted then to reveal himself. But there was a problem in doing that. To the other gods composed all as they were of the divine quintessence that is known on Earth as cheese he was quite visible, but not on Earth, as due to his specific essence of spice and metal, he was invisible by nature and not according to a concomitant attribute.  He could only indirectly affect the world for now until he could adopt a son, one whom he would become in perfect love and could then through him walk among men. This would ultimately be Andrew Russell, but for the moment this was unknown to him, to everyone.

Accomplishing his will and getting a son to become himself would thus mean getting the other gods on his side so one could be persuaded to act as an intermediary for him. And as with everything in the feasting of Olympus, this meant throwing a party. This he did, then, in-a-way, creating the first Thanksgiving of which Blaise speaks in Metalheads and the Greek Consciousness: “Thanksgiving is not a feast, Thanksgiving is war”. A feast in Olympus meant peace in Olympus but indirectly, war on Earth as the conflicts of the gods were deflected to hit mankind. Spike did not know this yet, it being quite early on in his development, with some scholars thinking he was then still officially a baby god, less than five-hundred years old. On Earth, his party had wrought the Trojan War by deflecting a fraction of the hate of Zeus and Hera upon Earth, to create, unbeknownst to him, the tragedy of Agamemnon and the destruction of Troy. Most of the gods he invited enjoyed that night, but, however, when the divine police came to Olympus and threatened the heavy drinkers among the gods and goddesses, Spike’s chance seemed ruined. Eating and drinking among the gods had caused the war on earth, but also importantly, led to cannibalism among men as when Achilleus ate Hektor at a victory barbeque for the Greeks in Book XXV of the real Iliad

Primarily an appeasement of his anger, Achilleus’s action, however, ultimately brought about division within Greek society and the home. By the intercession of other gods, particularly Hermes in this case, Achilles had won the battle for the Greeks but had given into vengeance and hunger. Spike, it is true, was technically to blame for this as his party, removing hatred and disorder among the gods, necessitated it going somewhere with Greece and the Trojans just happening to fall in the wrong place. However, he did not originally intend any harm, and while he had sparked the war by his party, the bulk of the war’s violence was urged on by the other gods of their own compunction. There was no reliable television service up on Olympus in these days as the “enchanted cosmos then absorbed radio waves.” Thus Spike’s party having been broken up by the Olympian police to the gods’ grumbling they chose to watch the war that had just started in Troy for entertainment. There was a day left in the weekend and Dionysus had some fresh-brewed shots of whiskey, so the gods, absent an extremely tired, dismayed, and young Spike, went to the show. Most had front row or box seats enabling them to get a close view of the action, but as the action actuated, the gods soon took it seriously, too seriously in fact. One choosing one side, the other, another, the old rivals of the gods began again as they interfered, confused, and most simply stated “done messed up all of Greece by their presence” (Galbraith, 255). Hera, Zeus, Athena, and Ares in particular raged against each other and against the peoples of Greece and Troy. It was a divine conflict now, and only a divinity could even pose a chance of saving mankind from this angry state and the power of fate.

And Spike realized this. A god loving peace, but not for its own sake, loving war insofar as it brought about the “raw experience of the real which is ‘war’ spelled backward” (Washut, 36), he determined to do something for peace and to prove his own bravery before the rest of the Olympian gods. He would redeem himself before them, before the police and perhaps even be revealed to mankind. So that very night he set up another party with a handful of the gods in attendance. It was toned down, featuring less alcohol or at least more diluted samples of the same, but to the few that came, he offered a proposal over dinner, that the gods exit active participation in the war and persuade men to end fighting by giving them “some new thing to eat”(Donaldson, 158). Alas, none listened, afraid of the Olympian police, with whom Zeus typically conceded as well as of course Zeus himself..

The most the gods present could agree on was an attempt to reduce their interference in and among men. But the gods really didn’t leave the war alone, as the temptation for excitement and adventure soon brought them back into this “Super Bowl of Wrath” conflict. After ten years of destructive fighting, millions had died on the fields around Troy as the gods watched and Spike bemoaned his failure. Hermes ultimately ended the war, of course, when he borrowed Bigfoot’s flying saucer and captured Hector but rather than both sides signing a peace treaty we have instead the horrendous victory barbeque of Achilleus and Agamemnon. The two made peace with each other there, yes, over their past “Eat-mor-chikin” or “hamburgers and heaven” debate that had threatened the Greek efforts for five years. However, their peace treaty solved their differences by cannibalism of Hector and the Trojan nobles as the Greeks celebrated and ceremoniously destroyed Troy. This was a move terribly offensive to the gods and cosmic order itself as cannibalism, that which they most hated and detested, was seen by men and soon was to be copied endlessly beyond this first barbeque. Zeus demanded justice for this crime, not peacefully accepting the results of the war.  His demand for justice thus reigned down upon Agamemnon and Odysseus, who for some reason none can discern instigated the cooking and eating of the Trojans and thus began the chain of murder beginning with Agamemnon as well as the case of the suitors that plagued and ultimately killed Odysseus in the Odyssey. Family life and the home were broken as violence could not appease for violence without injustice of its own, and cracks thus soon developed within larger society as Spike matured and approached the state of the world more philosophically. 

As a god in the land of birds, trees, and worms that is and was Olympus, Spike was unaffected by this fractured society but felt weirdly within himself a mission, a calling, to make right this sorry state. It was more now than just his personal desire for recognition, but a mission to make even lowly man memorable as he convinced Hermes and the young Bigfoot to stir up the Greeks, his favorite people as they were those whom he saw to have the most potential, to their own defense. To rectify properly for the sin of the prior cannibalism that occurred even then among the Persians and their allies, Spike created honey to strengthen his chosen people, the Greeks. Honey symbolized the Greek spirit in opposing the tempatation to Medize and submit to the flag of the fig as we see early philosophers like Xenophanes declaring that “if the god had not made light-colored honey we would think that figs were far sweeter.” Unlike his time, however, we no longer face the temptation of the fig, that of working with the Medes or Persians, so the importance of honey is somewhat lost although a simple recounting of the recently new-found facts of the war shows just how much Spike’s gift did.

The Persian War was truly about Persia trying to secure Greece as a production facility for its nationally-owned fig businesses. Though the abduction of women and other matters played a role as Herodotus argues in starting the war, on a basic level it was caused by figs. Persia offered figs, was fighting for figs, and the war was ultimately about figs. Thus as the Persians offered figs to encourage Greeks to defect to their side, had a flag covered with figs and drank fig wine at their neighborhood bars and for soldiers, while on the march, they were truly a nation symbolized by the fig. But at this time, the danger to Greece was greatest, even overlooking the millions the Persians mustered to try and take it,  in the fact that Greece had no unifying symbol to until Spike offered honey through his intermediaries of Hermes and Bigfoot. Broadcasting the announcement on Greek television with the first endorsement advertisement Hermes simply said, “The god’s eat honey; you should too!” The Greeks, fearful and indecisive until this moment, flocked to order it, moved to the heart by this new substance.

And this honey saved them. The Greeks now had a symbol, a culture, a national food they could bake and show off at their diversity-day events. Thus it was honey that strengthened and fed the famed 300 Spartans at Thermopylae while greasing the Greek oars at Salamis. Eventually defeated, the Persians fled back to their homeland as the Greeks celebrated with a feast full of honey dishes. All seemed well to Spike in this attempt at making peace for his chosen people, yet the aforementioned culinary racial tensions added more trouble as the Greeks themselves split.

Honey per se is obviously better than figs as the authority of Scripture suggests, but it is not fully one in itself. Part of it, corrupted, can be nearly as bad as figs alone. Firstly, however, it is from the Bible quite obvious that figs are bad. For Christ himself cursed the fig tree in Mark’s gospel saying “No more from thee — to the age — may any eat fruit” (Mark 11:14). This, importantly, is the only time Christ “didst curse” (Mark 11:21 YLT) in the Bible and illustrates the importance of Christ’s rebuke of the fig tree as evil. Why? Well, what if the tree from which Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit was actually a fig tree? The fig leaves with which Adam and Eve covered themselves fit well then in the larger picture and perhaps the same with the wine with which Noah became drunk leading some modern Biblical scholars to suggest that the Persians were actually the descendants of Noah’s son Canaan. The evil associated with the fig and thereby the Persians by their association with the fruit did not exist in a Biblical vacuum, however. As the Bible condemns figs, honey is seen as positive on the contrary. For the promised land was “a land flowing with milk and honey” (Ex 3:8 YLT), John the Baptist ate “locusts and honey of the field”, and Proverbs recommends honey saying: “My son, eat honey, for it is good, and the drippings of the honeycomb are sweet to your taste” (Proverbs 24:13 RSVCE). Honey represents the promise of God and good in the Bible just as much as Spike’s offer of honey represented his blessing and help to the Greeks. But in this parallelism, the honey of Spike can be corrupted just as much as the Biblical honey which Proverbs likely warns: “It is not good to eat much honey” (Prov. 25:27). 

A rift opened between light colored honey and dark colored honey in the Greek world as Athens and Sparta developed their own blend of honey, each with different bodily effects. As they split symbolically by their separation in type of honey, we see them split apart in lifestyle in direction as Sparta became a war-like people focused on the “dark-blood” of Homeric description and Athens focused on the light-hearted happiness of the Classical lifestyle. Neither Athens or Greece had fallen to the depths of the fig,, but they were different now, and diverged even more over time as new generations grew up under the influence of differing honies. Soon, “culinary racial tensions” provoked full-on war as each side was terrified over the spread of the other’s philosophy and what they each saw as a perverted way of life by the export of their honey. Tariffs and bans were not enough for either government to stem the flow of illicit honey from crossing both ways between Athenian and Spartan territory. Armed bands soon led caravans of Spartans each with jars of honey deep into Athenian territory but unbeknownst to either side, the jars had been spiked by the Israelite Joab’s Seal Team 6 operatives with a poison to which the Spartans were immune. This, little known, was the actual origin of the Athenian plague (Zelden, 155)  and the low-point for Athens and Greece as a whole. Repeated cycles of violence, destruction, and peace, a system which Spike sought to save man from, seemed still to be continuing and Spike made the fateful decision to give up on everything. 

But it was only for the moment. He was to return and rectify all things when the world itself was ready. Petitioning Zeus to be represented in the world for the next two-thousand-years as a holy seasoning, Spike Seasoning, Spike waited in Olympus for the right moment to truly replace the failing and ineffective food symbols he had first attempted to work with. None of this demeans his dignity as a god, of course, for Spike was simply being most reasonable and waiting for the “fullness of time to come”. And since that time did come, with Spike’s calling and choice of Andrew to be himself one-and-the-same, Spike now fights among us to achieve glory for us throughout symbol. Though it is still a battle, the death-filled epics over his blessing or curse are not around, leaving Andrew/Spike one step closer to actual victory and peace. It is thus why we see Andrew in defense so boldly of Frassati against the verbal attacks of its foes, Johannes with his German (that is Persian ancestry) opposed to the Frat, and hundreds of students caught in the crossfires. All this is simply a continuation of the wars and struggles that were caused by food per se and as symbol. But with Andrew as Spike, fully present in the physical and for the physical, “we mere human beings have hope” (Washut, 179).



Bibliography:

Donaldson, Sophia. Spartan Entertainment: How a Lack of Good TV Reception Determined History. Front Royal: Christendom Press, 2008.

Galbraith, Blaise, Metalheads and the Greek Consciousness. Santa Paula: Thomas Aquinas Press, 2009

Homer. The Metalhead’s Iliad. Trans. Dr. Anthony Jones. Alexandria: Heritage Foundation, 2019

Kress, Ruth. Ruthie’s Recipes. Hudson: Greg’s Books, 2016

Nemec, Joseph, Warrior Heavy Metal Bible Heroes for Kids. Austin: Seeker Studio Books, 2019, pg 99

Rioux, Michel. New-Earth-Hamburgers. Portland: Guns-And-Drums Books, 2017

Russell, Andrew, Evangelium Andreii. Lander: Wiominga Libri, 2018, pg 53

Washut, Dr. Kyle. Hannah’s Special Quiz. Denver: DrivingOnEmpty Publications, 2011

Zelden, Anne. Them’s Fighting Words: Israeli Flag and the Hijab. New Orleans: Y’all Books, 1999

Zepp, Dr. Jacob. You Should Be Obsessed With Football. Appleton: OohhBaal Books, 2013