Books and Brews: Eat My Words Bookstore

June was another fun program on Books and Brews with Laura Vosika!  Today we talked to Scott van Koughnett, owner of Eat My Words Bookstore in northeast Minneapolis--where Michael and I will be appearing next Saturday to talk about writing, do readings from The Blue Bells Chronicles, and host a beer tasting.  Yes, 


Michael Agnew, Books and Brews, Beer, craft beer, valkyrie
Laura Vosika, Michael Agnew, Scott van Koughnett
donated by Dangerous Man Brewery across the street.  What's that, you say?  You'd love to come for the intellectual literary atmosphere and gather with writers and poets?  The address is:

1228 2nd Street NE, Minneapolis
June 24, 2017
3 to 5 pm

Free and open to the public.


Scott came to books largely by way of an aunt who owned a bookstore--and his fond memories of time spent there.  After earning degrees in English and history, and a detour into the world of corporate law--and with many shelves full of books in his own home--he came back to his dream of one day owning his own bookstore.

Scott van Koughnett, Eat My Words Bookstore
A bit over three years after opening, Scott is moving (just half a block) to bigger facilities.  We talked a bit about the value of literature, of stories--the fact that stories have been with us throughout history; the connection between history and story, and why and how we learn from stories.

I couldn't wait to see how Michael was going to pair beer with the very broad theme of 'a bookstore.'  I was not disappointed!  He chose beers this week on a literary theme.  Oberon Ale from Bell's Brewery, Puck Petite Saison from North Coast Brewing Company, Brynhildr's Gift, a rye ale from Olvalde Farm and Brewing, and finally--what more could you want for a literary beer!--War and Peace from Fulton Beer.

Speaking of stories--Michael was ready with the story behind Brynhildr.  She was one of the (always female) Valkyrie--one of those in Norse and Germanic mythology who selects who will live and die in battle--and later bear mead to their chosen in the hall of the slain.  (So let me get this straight--first you pick them to die, then you bring them mead?  Do these guys hate the Valkyrie or love them?)

While there is a great deal more to the story, Michael stuck with the part where she displeases Odin, and for doing so, is condemned to live as a mortal woman, locked away in a castle. (Wait, that's part of living as a mortal woman?  Where do I sign up for my castle?)  There, she sleeps inside a ring of flames until a man might come along who wants to marry her.

Lo and behold, it works!  Siegfried arrives, removes her helmet and cuts off her chainmail and they fall in love.  Then Wagner wrote a great piece that includes the trombone soli from Ride of the Valkyries.

Michael says the moral of the story is, Don't mess with Odin.  My take was, Why's everyone paying for Match and E Harmony if all they have to do is go to sleep in a ring of flames and men just magically appear?  I've already started building my flame-proof castle in the backyard.  I'll work on the permits when government offices open tomorrow, but I can't really see why anyone would object.

I should have it all sorted out in plenty of time to be at the event: next Saturday, June 24, 3 to 5 pm at Eat My Words Bookstore in Minneapolis.  We hope to see you there!
Books and Brews is currently looking for sponsors so that we can continue airing on AM 950.

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