basically fuck medieval europe
you guys know this nursery rhyme right?
it’s like “sing a song for basically free
like I will give you six pennies and some bread to sing it
a pocket full of bread actually
which is a horrible amount of bread
because have you ever tried to store bread in your pocket
it doesn’t fucking work
might as well be “a pocket full of bird treats”
which is appropriate because this song is about 24 birds in a pie”
THIS IS WHERE I AM GOING TO STOP THE RE-TELLING FOR A SECOND
let me ask you dear reader
what do you think the line “four and twenty blackbirds
baked in a pie”
are they the 24 letters used to print the English bible?
are they the 24 hours in a day?
THEY ARE ACTUAL FUCKING BLACKBIRDS
people in medieval europe
straight up used to bake pie shells
and then stuff live birds into the pie shells
so that when you cut the pie open BIRDS FLY OUT
INSTEAD OF BIRDS
IT WAS A DWARF
PIE IS OBJECTIVELY ONE OF THE BEST THINGS THERE IS
AND YET SOMEWHERE IN THE CLOGGED OUTHOUSE OF HISTORY
SOME PSYCHOPATH DECIDED TO TURN PIE INTO A DELIVERY MECHANISM
FOR BIRD-BASED TERROR ATTACKS
LITERALLY THE ONLY GOOD ASPECT OF THIS I CAN THINK OF
IS YOU MIGHT DECAPITATE A BIRD WHILE CUTTING OPEN THE PIE
BUT THERE’S NO WAY YOU’RE GONNA DECAPITATE ALL OF THEM
EXCUSE ME WHILE I STAB EVERY PIE FIFTY TIMES BEFORE I EAT IT NOW
anyway the story unfolds predictably from there
they try to serve the pie to the king
but the king is scrooge mcduck apparently
(which makes it even weirder that they’re serving him live birds)
and he’s in his vault swimming in gold coins
his wife is somewhere else eating an actual meal
but someone still cuts open the pie because they’re an asshole
and the birds fly out
and one of the birds goes into the garden
AND RIPS OFF THE MAID’S NOSE
doesn’t even eat it
just rips it off and leaves it there
so they call the king’s doctor
and he’s pretty chill about it
almost as if he knew something like this was bound to happen.
he sews the nose back on flawlessly
and nobody can tell it was ever ripped off by a frenzied bird
the moral of the story
is if you’re working for a king
make sure he provides comprehensive health insurance
I did always find this one immensely disturbing. Like how do even make birds succumb to this sorcery anyways and why would you want to? Seems sketchy to me but wtf do I know?
Randolph Caldecott (yes, of THAT medal) thought “of sixpence” made no sense, and changed it to “for sixpence”.
It’s actually a pirate recruitment song. Snopes confirms. http://www.snopes.com/lost/sixpence.asp
And a “pocket of rye” is actually like, a flask of whiskey, so even if you take the rhyme at its face value that’s not bad for singing a song.
Might wanna reread that. The “Lost Legends” category at Snopes is all parody articles.
I’m disinclined to believe that, as it would render snopes quite useless and unusable.