Thursday, February 11, 2010


Swim team season is almost over (tomorrow!) and then I can get back to posting on a somewhat regular basis. These last few weeks have been crazy.

I was a Cracker Barrel restaurant and for those of you who are not familiar with them, they have a store of country related goods that you must go through to get to the restaurant.  My oldest son is 10 and has decided that he wanted to get him mom something really nice for Valentine's day.  So he gets me (since I have the money, I guess) to walk over with him toward the scented candles.  While there, I see some goat milk soap products made by a company called Dionis.

You know by now that I am a bit of a nerd and wondered between having to smell various Yankee Candle scents (kind of liked the Strawberry Buttercream) if this was something related to Greek mythology.  The name just had a ring to it, but I couldn't place it. 

So here I am, looking on the internet and I find that it is an obscure alternate spelling for Dionysus (Mr. D to you Percy Jackson fans).  Even which searches 1065 different online dictionaries only had it as a girl's name from a baby name dictionary.

I was a bit afraid of looking at the connection between Dionysus and goats.  I mean, this is Greek mythology and all.  I've never been a big fan of Dionysus.  My students, however, think that he is the greatest.

Turns out that the connection is not one to worry about and I am ashamed that I had not remembered this myth.  The goat connection comes from his birth.  Hera, constantly jealous (with good reason) finds out that Semele is carrying Zeus' child.  She disguises herself and goes down to convince her to ask Zeus to see him in all his glory to prove he really is who he says he is.  After making a stupid promise to give her anything she wished for, Zeus ends up shining brightly and completely destroying her in the process.  He saves the baby (Dionysus) by sticking him into his thigh. 

When the baby is born, Hera comes after him.  At first Zeus hides him by dressing him as a girl.  That didn't work.  Then he changed Dionysus into a goat.  This worked like a charm and Dionysus grew up as a goat.  When he got old enough, Zeus turned him back at which Hera literally drives him crazy.

I think that naming the goat milk products after this is worthy of an Obscure Myth Allusion Award.  Looking at his picture, I guess it is lucky for him that most women around him were a bit intoxicated.

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