I am not sure what I am doing to offend Lord Zeus but he just gave me one heck of a warning to stop: I was almost struck by lightning.
The deadly bolt of pure energy grounded itself on a building less than 20 feet in front of me. It was pouring rain & I was making a dash for the protection of the nearest dwelling when ZAP! that metal-clad structure was smoking from the roof. Light flashed blindingly bright. Sparks erupted from the point of contact. Thunder echoed deafeningly. And I hit the deck in a reflexive attempt to save myself from a threat I couldn’t fully comprehend until a minute later when, while lying in the fedal position in a puddle in the pouring rain, my brain stopped buzzing.
While I waited for security, fire-authorities & the paramedics to arrive (a requirement at my current local, not because there was any actual harm or damage done) I pondered what had inspired this near-death experience. “Well you were next to a metallic building during an electrical storm” you say logically. Yes, I was…BUT it was the only bungalow in a cluster of 3-story buildings. If you ask me, it seemed highly unlikely that this would be the lightning’s target…obviously that was my decision as I was making a break for that particular trailer and do not have a death wish. The dismal odds give birth to conspiracy theories in my head, and since this would be an incredibly complex-to-the-point-of-impossibility way to murder someone I can’t help but think it is an act of the gods…or one god in particular. Lighting Bolts are a dead give-away. This is Zeus’ MO. “But isn’t that a bit obvious?” you ask. “Maybe he’s being framed?” To that I say: No way. When you are King of the Gods there is no need for subtly. Being super obvious just makes it super clear who the mere-mortal has royally pissed off.
So that settles it. Zeus sent a lightning bolt down to me…although not directly at me. The God of the Skies, Master of Lightning is not likely to miss unless he means to.
Still Alive = Just a Warning
But what am I being warned of? I can’t think of any major offences I have committed lately…or ever for that matter. I love thunder storms. Rain is my favorite form of weather. I frequently visit his lovely domain by flying on a plane almost weekly. I haven’t been anywhere near an ocean or the depths of Hades lately to worship at his brothers’ kingdoms. And his son Jason is my favorite demigod.
Since I don’t know what I’m doing wrong (and for the record this is the third time I’ve been within 50 feet of a lightning strike so it must be an ongoing life-long thing) I’ve decided it’s best to try to find a way to appease the almighty Zeus. It’s harder that one would think to find traditional Greek sacrifices and offerings on the internet (come on World Wide Web, shape up!). I mean, does anyone know the location of any Greek sacrificial altars outside of Greece? Preferably in Western Canada? And I’m not sure I can afford to purchase a bull just for the sake of sacrificing it. Even if I could satisfy these requirements, the likelihood of me making it through a ritualistic slitting of it’s throat is not high. And don’t even get me started on intestine extraction… My desperate mind brought me back to the Percy Jackson/Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan. Mr Riordan has taught me so much about ancient gods (Greek, Egyptian & soon Norse) so I knew he’d have hidden some tips & tricks amidst his simple but gripping prose.
Here is what I came up with:
“Come on,” Luke told me.
As I got closer, I saw that everyone was taking a portion of their meal and dropping it into the fire, the ripest strawberry, the juiciest slice o beef, the warmest, most buttery roll.
Luke murmured in my ear, “Burnt offerings for the gods. They like the smell.””
– Percy Jackson : The Lightning Thief (Chapter 7)
I don’t have a convenient place to burn the crap out of my dinner each night, but the internet did come through with an alteration. Solid redemption for your earlier failure Inter-web! If your also having trouble with a Greek God try having picnic with ‘cakes & ale.’ The selection of cake and ale will be different depending on which god you are trying to please. For Zeus the website that I am choosing to whole-heartedly believe in recommended white cake (something like vanilla cupcakes or doughy sugar cookies) and wine (preferably red). Once you have your red wine & white cupcakes find a grassy patch to munch on them. The key is to eat about two-thirds of the offering and put the rest aside for later. Eat your cake. Wash it down with some ale. All the while discuss how awesome the sky is. Once you’re done dig a hole & offer the remaining third of your feast to Zeus by burying it there. Done!
Here’s hoping the big guy in the sky will take my offerings as a sign of peace & respect. I guess we’ll see next thunder storm…but just in case maybe don’t stand too close to me! Zeus is a big bad dude and you do NOT what to F with him.
Love & Luck,