News from The Icelandic Ministry of Elven AffairsPosted: July 5, 2012 Filed under: misc, weird 7 Comments
An MP of the Independence Party in Iceland has had a 30 ton boulder relocated to protect it because the boulder is home to several generations of elves. He decided to move the boulder after a 2010 accident in proximity to the rock left him unharmed due to elven intervention and he realized a future expansion of the road would disturb the location. I assume that since it is Iceland, those are metric tons. Metric tons are slightly
smaller larger than US tons, but that is still a fucking heavy boulder. I’m sure the MP is hoping to have the elf vote all sewn up in future elections.
As the MP, Arne Johnsen, explains it, “I had Ragnhildur Jónsdóttir, a specialist in the affairs of elves from Álfagarðurinn in Hellisgerði, Hafnarfjörður, to come look at the boulder with me,” recollected Árni. “She said it was incredible, that she had never met three generations of elves in the same boulder before.” The article goes on to state the measures taken to make sure that the elves will be happy in their new location.
I don’t know what part of this story makes me happier — that Iceland has MPs who care enough about keeping the elves happy to move gigantic boulders from one island to another, or that ‘specialist in the affairs of elves’ is a job title there. More on elf expertise and the boulder here… including pictures of the elf home (but none of the elves, unfortunately). That this degree of whimsy is seemingly publically accepted makes me want to move to Iceland.
Not sure it's all whimsy. Asatru (reconstructed Norse/Germanic paganism) is a state-recognized religion in Iceland, the first country to do so actually. Elves are a part of their folkloric structure, and they are definitely believed in by some members of the religion. So, while it still may be strange (especially to these Christian eyes), I can see why.
When I see the kinds of shenanigans that US politicians get up to in the name of their own mainstream beliefs (like the 'OMG we gotta fight Sharia Law!' hysteria in Tenneseee), elves living in rocks still seems pretty whimsical to me.
ObPedantic: Metric tons are heavier- they're 1000 kilograms, or 2204.6 pounds.
Eric: Oooops! Thanks for the info.
As crazy as they might seem, they at least had the good sense to go after and prosecute their bankers. They busted their corrupt backers, while we turn them into glorified welfare queens, and gave them the undeserved title of “job-creators.” 9_9
How do I convert to this religion?
Not the first time this kind of thing has happened in Iceland. Here's a passage from Wikipedia's entry for landvættir (“land wights” or nature spirits):
“The belief in local landvættir lives on in Iceland, with many farms having rocks that are not mowed closely and on which children are not allowed to play. When construction was about to start on Keflavík air base, the Icelandic foreman dreamed that a woman came to him asking to delay moving a boulder to give her family time to move out. He did so for two weeks over American objections, until she came to him in another dream telling him the landvættir were all out.”
I don't give credence to the notion of elves or spirits myself, but whether this kind of thing is inspired by deeply-held belief, whimsy, or the mischievously deadpan Nordic sense of humour, I find it charming.