Send It to Valhalla! - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Send It to Valhalla!

Send It to Valhalla!

Published May 19, 2006

This past summer, a regional grocery store here in Duluth was having an art contest. The contest called for using no more than 50 grocery bags in creating a piece of art that reflected our community. I spent all day one Saturday with my Viking ship creation.

It is called: “Imported Scandinavian Foods -Aisle 6”

The winner from the store got $250 in grocery gift cards, and was able to go to the next round where the winners from all the stores will receive a year’s worth of groceries!
I received a phone call from the grocery store, but it was not the news I wanted to hear. I was beat out by an ore boat creation. The Vikings would not have settled for this! But that’s ok, second place will have to do this time. I won a $50 gift card, so at least our groceries were paid for one week.

After sitting in my basement for five months, I decided it was time to send the ship to Valhalla. It was a beautiful November night, with a moon glowing in the sky. We thanked the Viking ship for the week’s worth of groceries, and Angel set the ship aflame. We watched as the ship burned and bobbed in the waves. It was a surreal moment, thinking about how the Viking kings were sent to Valhalla.
Andy & Angel

Grapevine follow-up questions:
Dear Andy,
1) What are the ingredients to your Viking ship?

– My Viking ship was made up of fifty paper grocery bags, some cardboard for hull structure, tape, and some string.
2) I notice the other art project that won was also a boat. Why did people build boats?

– Yes, there were another couple of boat creations. The winning boat was a depiction of an ore boat going under our Aerial Lift Bridge here in Duluth. It is one of the most recognizable landmarks here in Duluth, so that is why it probably won. Myself being biased, I thought it was a little too cliché for the area. There was one other boat in the competition, a canoe. It was modest, but a well-made creation. I think that there were some boat creations because we live near a large body of water and also here in Minnesota, we are in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, so water is all around us.
3) Are you going to enter the competition next year?
– Yes, if they have a competition again next year, I need to redeem myself and the honour of the Viking heritage!

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