Expectations (or, Why I Don’t Live in Seattle)

January 24, 2010

You might think that dealing a combat defeat to the deity in charge of the Southeast wind would entitle you to significant wind-based concessions (favorable sailing for life, for example, or a standing guarantee of a light breeze to tousle your perfect hair at exactly the right moment). But if you were an American Indian tribe from Puget Sound, the most complete expression of defeat you could imagine would apparently be FOUR DAYS OF GOOD WEATHER:

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(This is a caption accompanying a mask at the American Museum of Natural History. You can click on it for a larger, more legible view.)

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One Response to “Expectations (or, Why I Don’t Live in Seattle)”

  1. For a sailor, the whole approach of framing your relationship with the ocean and weather gods as a battle is a very bad idea. Don’t name your vessel anything that might insinuate you want a fight. EG: Choose Wave Dancer not Wave Crusher, and Song Bird not Sea Hawk. If you have caught the gods’ attention and are in battle, then four days is definitely a miracle, I think.

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