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Home: The Toast

The Judgement of Paris, as I assume you are aware, is one of the most popular and also the best themes in classical European painting, because it’s based on a legend where three supremely powerful goddesses asked a worthless male mortal to rank them in order of attractiveness in order to win a sculpture of a fruit. Which says so much in such a short amount of time about ancient Greek sexual politics, I think; Yes definitely the Queen of Heaven wants to know if some Trojan shepherd thinks she’s still hot.

(An aside: the correct thing to do when three murder-eyed, placid-lipped, notoriously temperamental immortals show up on your doorstep in the nude and ask you to rank them in order of beauty is to BEG OFF. “You’re all so lovely! I couldn’t possibly decide! Who am I, a mere mortal, to declare all three of you anything less than perfect? You’ll notice I sacrificed three flawless bulls to all of you this morning, please do not decimate my flocks or level my city, goodbye, worship you tomorrow.” NOT: “Sure, okay. Turn around, let me get the full picture.”)

Anyhow, it’s a great story, and pretty much every dude born between the years 1100 and 1850 with an ounce of sprezzatura and a brush tried his hand at painting it at least once. Recurring motifs include: Aphrodite’s son Eros hanging about her feet, sometimes shooting arrows; Hera’s companion the peacock; Athena’s war helmet; a smirking Hermes; ostentatious hats. Expect to see Hera turning away from the viewer and starting to put her robe back on in about a third of them, because Hera tires of losing quickly. Aphrodite will be naked 1000% of the time — occasionally she will have a useless gossamer string around her hips — and about a 50/50 chance of Hera and Athena being naked too.

paris

hi
hi hi hi
hi we noticed you had an apple there
why don’t you just give it to whichever one of us you think is the prettiest
no consequences or anything
just pick one

paris2

you wont get mad or anything
haha oh my god
mad about what?
like if i choose one of you
which you have to!!
yeah you have to do that
the other two wont get mad at me
no not at all
its totally objective
no repercussions at all
of any kind

paris3

so theres no catch
haha
you keep asking us
so many questions
like about your personal safety
instead of just telling us which one of us is the prettiest once and for all

paris4

oh wow interesting choice
her hat has only one feather on it while other peoples hats have like five or six feathers
some people might say thats a little hasty, that maybe you didnt really get a good look at all the hats
but not me

paris5

i kind of cant move
well you dont need to move
you just need to pick
well let you get up after you pick

paris6

Okay, I don’t want to pass value judgments on other cultures, and also all beauty standards are oppressive, probably, but this particular beauty ideal is MESSED UP. “What makes a woman beautiful? A hat, a necklace, a horrifying smirk, and a neck that can bend 140 degrees.”

paris7

just let me hold it ok
ill give it right back

paris17oh look at that
your picking
youre making your pick
what a good idea!!!
you still have a minute to change your mind though
yeah if you want to change your mind you could still do that


paris10

oh wow look at that
im holding the golden apple of beauty
which i guess technically
and also officially
and also in every other sense
makes me the most beautiful

paris11

ahahaha
not so fast

paris14

oh fuck this im getting dressed 

paris15

oh sorry are we starting
did you pick someone already
hang on im fixing my shoe
i dont even notice how beautiful i am
which i guess is sort of attractive in its own awy, how much i dont even notice, im just carelessly but beautifully (i guess, i wouldnt know) fixing my shoe

paris16

are you mad
what?
you look mad
why would i look mad
i dont know your face just looks mad
no
this isnt what my mad face looks like
ok good
youll know my mad face when you see it 

paris18

ahhh sorry ahaha this is so unexpected
i cant even believe it
my whole dress fell off is how surprising this is

paris19

you said no consequences right
what?
you said i could just pick and then youd go home and it would be over
sorry i cant hear you with this helmet on
with this war helmet on

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