Friday, March 30, 2012

(Another) Flood Story, Part 2: The Boat

When I understood what Ea, the god of wisdom and craft, wanted me to do, I said to him "Lord Ea, a boat that big sounds pretty crazy, but I'll do it. I mean, you're the god and all. I will do as you command. I'll make a big boat and stock it with enough food for every living creature. I'd better go tell the city elders."

Then Ea said to me, "Uh, when I said 'every living creature,' I didn't really mean people. If the city elders wonder what you're doing, just tell them you're gonna leave town for a while because Enlil the Asshole is pissed at you. Trust me, they'll believe that.


"Tell the elders you're moving down to the gulf to hang with me a while. Tell them they're gonna get a lot of rain because they're so lucky. In fact, tell them they're going to have an abundance of rare fish and sweet fowl. A 'tide' of harvest, if you will. Tell them they'll receive wheat. Even better, tell them they'll receive wheat in - heh, heh - torrents! Ha ha ha ha! Yeah. Tell them that! Oh, mercy."

The next morning, with my household as my crew, we started working. The children brought me pitch and the men brought whatever else I needed. Meanwhile, the women did whatever women do.

On the fifth day, I made the hull and top deck. I laid the keel and the ribs and carved a kick-ass mermaid with big titties on the bow. Then I put in the planking. It had an acre of floor space with two wet bars, plenty of folding chairs for tanning, and an all-inclusive spa. Then again, I believe you had to pay for a happy ending.

I made six decks below and broke them into nine sections with bulkheads in between, and I put paintings of pretty seashores and big-titted mermaids on the walls. I drove in wedges, saw to the punt holes, stocked supplies, and put lovely emerald rings around all the cloth napkins.

The men brought oil in baskets, and I poured asphalt and oil into the furnace. I was ready to cover my boat with pitch and then caulk it, although I did briefly consider instead making a kick-ass road all the way to the Euphrates.

I treated my workers well. It was one hell of a boat building festival. I slaughtered bullocks for the people and every day I killed sheep. We even ate some of them. I gave the workers wine to drink as though it were river water. I gave them raw wine and red wine and oil and white wine. Being constantly shit-faced didn't hurt their productivity that much. After all, they only carried shit back and forth all day.

So we feasted and partied like it was a freaking New Year's festival. One night I even got so drunk that I anointed my head with oil. I was fucking crazy back in the day.

And - believe it or not - on the seventh day that goddamn boat was built, Gilgamesh.