Tuesday, July 5, 2011


....upon a time, there was an anvil. It just sat there in the blacksmith shop all day, getting pounded on. It had chronic headaches. At night, it would try to weep, but it could produce no tears. "Woe is me! All I do is just get pounded on. What kind of life is this?"

And then one special night -- at the stroke of 12:16 -- a drunken, flouncing fairy stumbled into the shop. She was holding not a magic wand but a sword. She waved it around over her head rather incautiously. And then said to the anvil:

"Buck up, my dear. Things could be worse. You could have come into the world as a ship anchor. Always getting thrown overboard. That would suck. You would always get wet and always rust. But here, things are cozy, and you get to perform a valuable service to keep the world in balance."

The anvil would have scratched its head and said something, but it was an anvil.

So the hiccupping fairy kept on speechifying:

"See? This sword was wrought right here, years ago, right on top of your head. And then it went into battle. It was such a strong sword that it broke all the enemy swords. The knight who wielded it was a rebel, a champion of the peasants. They won the war, and the kingdom became all nice and stuff. Everybody was happy...except the former Lord, who got flung into the next province from a trebuchet."

The anvil started feeling a little better about itself. About its role in societal reordering and proletarian ecstasy.

So the fairy knighted the anvil with a tap of the sword. Instantly, the anvil became as light as a feather and began to levitate. Then it floated out of the blacksmith shop and onward...up, up over trees and under the moon. Soon, it realized its headache was gone. The magical flight had done wonders. But the anvil also realized the iron-y of the situation: a flying anvil is bad for uprisings.

It flew back into the shop, clunked down on its pedestal, and lived happily ever after.

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