Sunday, August 14, 2011

Swords: The Greatest Thing Ever (100th post)

Monpeeps, this is the 100th post in the short, ridiculous history of j.Bowman Can't Sleep. It's been a long and winding road. And nowhere along that road has there been a divey little cafe with really good pie. Regardless, thanks to you all for continuing to read. I didn't think I would get past 8 posts when I started, and to be honest it wasn't until like 30 posts in this thing got readable anyways. But, I feel like I should try and say something of substance here because although this will actually matter to like 2 people, I'd like to commemorate the event with some wise words:

"Anyone who says you can't run away from your problems isn't a fast enough runner."

With that pearl of wisdom out of the way, I'd like to talk to you about the king of Medievil weapons. Before you even start, I don't know how to spell "Medievil". That "i" and "e" in the middle of it throw me every time and I am too lazy to find out what it is. Spellcheck is all the way up there ^. So if you are bothered by bad spelling, don't be such a nerd and get over it, you know what word I'm trying to say. This ain't a spelling bee.

Which Medie...Medeiv...fuck it! "Old timey" weapon do I consider to be king? Easy: Swords.

(The "Throne" they are all playing the "Game" for? Yep. Made of Swords)

Like ugly children, swords come in a variety of shapes and sizes and are capable of inflicting horrible damage to you eyes, body and soul.

Old school weaponry is pretty damn cool. Before the age of gunpowder and viciously subtle long term verbal abuse, men were men and those men carried swords. If you wanted to kill someone, you had to get right up in their "T-Rex" (ie close enough to your body where if you had stubby T-Rex arms you could hit someone) and handle your business. And if they had a sword too? Well whoever was the most awesome person on that given day would get revenge/all the maidens. The immediate badassery of the sword has stood the test of time. If you need to make something instantly cooler, but you don't have a lot of time on your hands, JUST ADD SWORD.

 (This lawyers objection was sustained...with blood)

If at anypoint during this entry you think to yourself: "Well, swords are alright I guess, but axes are really where it's at. Axe's are so cool". If that's the case I must ask this question: Are you part of axe camp? If so then fuck off. This here is sword country!

 (The official flag of "Sword Country". Brings a tear to the eye and stab wounds to enemies)

When is the last time you searched for something? It could be something simple, like keys or a remote or that lost shaker of salt or something (hint: That last one can be found in Margaritaville). Now, while engaging in this search, have you ever felt like you were trying to find an object for so long that it was like you were on a quest for it? That is a pretty apt description. It FELT like a quest. It ain't a legitimate quest until you are carrying a sword. I don't care if you are just going out for groceries. Swords add a level of epicness to every activity.


While swords add a certain greatness to every activity, there are certain times where swords are crucial to said activity, chief among them is when you are out buckling swash. Are you a swashbuckling pirate? Have you ever tried to buckle swash without a sword? Doesn't work out well.

 (Pictured: Lack of sword, Copious amounts of unbuckled swash)

Another reason I think swords are so awesome is that there is "sword lore". There isn't "tommy gun lore" or "cannon lore". Some of it is real, some of it is made up. I'm too lazy to do sufficient research to determine which is which so I'm just gonna pretend like it all really happened. Like King Arthur pulling Excalibur out of that...stone...type thing.

(Moderate research has confimed it was, in fact, a stone)

A lot of that story focuses on who was worthy enough to pull the sword from the stone but you know what? I don't really care so much about that (kid was a weiner anyway, look at him. What's that scarf about?). I want to hear the story about the man who was strong enough to drive the sword into the stone in the first place. Nobody ever talks about that guy, a fact I'm sure he was pretty pissed about when that little dweeb up there stepped up and stole his thunder...and his slice-stick.

(All signs point to Storm Shadow from G.I. Joe being responsible. Think about it.)

A reader rightfully took me to task in the comments section for omitting a sword wielding legend from this post. I apologize to Gnosis and all Zelda fans out there. Link's "Master Sword" serves two very important purposes.

1) It is the Master of all swords in the sword community.
B) It distracts me from the fact that he has an earring can't find his way through the god damn "Lost Woods"!

(Link: Where androgynous and bad ass meet)

If someone did something really heroic in oldentimes (or just happens to be an awesome British person in regulartimes) they get "knighted" and can be referred to as "Sir". It happened to Captain Picard and Gandalf (one of whom actually used a sword, can't remember which one). How do you go about making someone who is so great they get to officially be called "Sir" that much better? They take a sword...and touch them...once on each shoulder. When they stand up after that, they are legends forever.

(This girl killed soooooo many Turks. She earned this)

So even people who don't look cool get an added bonus when holding a sword. Fencers look like beekeepers, who in turn look like total jerkoffs. Except for the fact that fencers use swords for their hobby. That makes them incredible. Ladies, if you are out there, love to fence and can tolerate reading/listening to a neverending stream of bullshit, I'd like to buy you dinner sometime.

(The only thing bees keep doing around these folks is "getting stabbed")

Before I get into swords in fiction, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the one reason I look forward to getting old: SWORDS THAT ARE DISGUISED AS CANES!


While I'm young, I almost want to break my ankle so I could walk around with one of those things for awhile. I don't desire to have a broken ankle mind you, but unless I am wearing a cast or keeping my pimp hand strong, it would look mighty suspicious if I was bombing around town with a cane. As I said, I don't fear old ago so long as I get to take one of those on my strolls. I will happily trade capable boners for covert sword carrying.

Now on the flip side of this is the UMBRELLA that makes you think it's a SWORD. Terrible, just...terrible. If it was a regular thing, it would be incredible. Weather reports would instantly become 426% more badass then they currently are (which is not at all).

"Todays forecast calls for gusts of violence with a 30% chance of decapitation"

But normally umbrellas are just umbrellas and are not swords. The people that try and front like they are should be arrested.

(In prison, he'll be the handle...I don't even know what that means)

Taking a quick like at swords in fiction, naturally you go directly to the "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" and the person who was selected to be their leader, Leonardo. I went as a ninja turtle for Halloween once, and it was, without hesitation Leo. I like his responsible attitude, accountability and the fact that he carried a sword. Whoops, did I say "a sword"? I meant TWO SWORDS! Look at the jealousy amongst the other turtles:

("This way, fuckers!")

Donatello has a long stick as his weapon. Michaelangelo has...two small sticks connected by a chain. I'm sure at one point when they were picking weapons this discussion might've happened:

Donatello: Hey! why do you get two swords?!

Notice I didn't mention Raphael up there? Everyone loves Raphael and how much of a "badass" lone wolf he is (he wears red, such a cliche). You know, it takes a real tough guy to select the same color scheme and weapon that Elektra uses.

(Duuuuuude, c'mon)

* I'm gonna take a quick "What if they banged" timeout, cool? Cool.

(Stephael: Daughter of Elektra and Raphael)

And we're back. Sword related awesomeness in fiction isn't just for adolescent martial arts reptiles, it's for humans too. Sometimes....lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of humans (+83 more)

(Attn. Crazy 88: You should probably run away.)

I am reminded of a scene in "Pulp Fiction" (Have you seen it? No? Then leave!) in which a sword plays a key role. Now imagine if you will...that one of your rivals is being ass raped (against his will, mind you) in a basement by a couple of city hillbillies, one of which is an on duty cop.

Still with me? Good.

Now let's say you managed to somehow escape the basement (where a tremendous amount of forced ass rape is still very much in progress) and you are faced with the prospect of either fleeing, ass intact, or wreaking furious bloody vengeance. I'd go the vengeance route too. Rape is bullshit. Bruce Willis is the escapee, and while upstairs he searches for just the right weapon to fuck some serious shit up with.

Hammer? No

Baseball Bat? No

Chainsaw? Creative, but no.

Then he sees it...

...and makes the choice that I know we all would make in that situation. The choice of an old generation:

 (Sword beats rock, paper, scissors and gimp)

If John McClane isn't enough to convince you, I will raise you some Forrest Whittaker. If it's good enough for him, don't you think it's good enough for you?

(Spoiler alert: It is!)

In closing, the next time you find yourself hurled back in time and you search around for a weapon to use, don't even think about picking an axe or...what ever that stick with the spiked metal ball thing on it is called.

(Seriously, fuck this thing. One hit and then it's stuck in something)

Do yourself a favor, reach for a sword. Among the many reasons are:

- It cuts
- It stabs
- It dices
- The maidens go crazy for it
- It makes you look cool, even if you don't look cool
- It gets rid of those pesky gimps

And if you should happen to find yourself stuck in the past in an even farther off location, in other words "a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away", fear not. They got swords there too. And their swords are also lasers.

(Where is the "Lightsaber Axe"? That's what I thought!)

Thanks For Reading

- jB

If you want this kind of bullshit, but in 140 characters and several times a day, follow @jbowmancouver on Twitter. You'll probably regret it, but that won't be for at least 3 weeks.


  1. I expected a Legend of Zelda photo in there. That was a slight disappointment. But still, swords are cool.

  2. I made a solemn vow years ago to never disappoint anyone unless I am on a date with them. I have addressed this oversight and corrected it...the sword thing I mean.