Camo Armitage?

T’was the night before Thanksgiving Break and all through the campus, not a creature was stirring…not even a grampus (it’s a word – look it up!).  

I suppose that’s not entirely true since I am still here and stirring just a bit…doing some clean up in preparation to take a few days off for the holiday.  I’m actually kind of excited because I’ve officially declined to join the big family Thanksgiving fête on Thursday – for all kinds of reasons.   I feel almost liberated at the thought of puttering around in my PJ’s all day – even while making our mini feast.

Turkey, pumpkin pie and antagonistic family gatherings are not all that are synonymous with Thanksgiving in these parts.  This time of year also coincides with the annual whitetail deer gun hunt.  As such, I was not at all surprised to see four hooves sticking up from the back end of a pickup truck riding down the interstate yesterday.  My personal Facebook feed is plastered with images of hunters and their vanquished prey.  I was only slightly unnerved by all of the cars of hunters parked in fields along the interstate – they know how far they need to stay from the road with rifles right?


Although camo clothing is optimal for hunting, in gun deer season, remaining completely invisible to the deer is less important than being very visible to the other people with guns.  Hence, blaze orange is a required element for all hunters (and anyone else who dares step a toe onto hunting grounds).  It becomes the unofficial uniform of Wisconsin in late November.

All this camo pondering got me thinking about the Berlin Station production (?) pic of Richard Armitage which surfaced this week via Getty Images (this one doesn’t appear available to embed, and I’m not keen to mess with Getty Images this week).  The grey henley, grey hoodie, grey ball cap look with the dark jacket and dark jeans read like a sort of urban overcast day camo.  Perfect for hiding in plain sight in a fast paced cityscape where most people only register as a passing glance…a shadowy glimpse.  Perfect for an espionage type trying to keep a low profile.

As you might expect, Greek myth has its own “camo” stories.  Most of them revolve around the Ἄϊδος κυνέην or “Cap of Invisibility.”  Athena wore it in The Iliad when she came to the aid one of her favorites, Diomedes, as he fought her half brother Ares.  The Ἄϊδος κυνέην made her invisible to Ares so that she could help Diomedes defeat him with out being caught interfering.

Perhaps the most famous myth including the Ἄϊδος κυνέην centers around the hero Perseus.  Tasked with returning with the head of the Gorgon Medusa (she who’s face turns humans to stone) Perseus needed all the help he could get.   He didn’t need the helmet to behead Medusa, depicted below in glorious, if gory, bronze detail by Cellini.

Perseus by Cellini Source

Perseus by Cellini

Nope, that he managed with the help of a special shield and some winged sandals he’d been lent by a couple of helpful deities.  The Ἄϊδος κυνέην came in really handy when it came time to flee from Medusa’s sister Gorgons…seems they were more than a bit put out that someone (who they couldn’t see) had just lopped off their sister’s head!

I’m rather glad Richard Armitage doesn’t have an Ἄϊδος κυνέην – then we couldn’t get a glimpse of the quintessence of quadriceps that simply can’t be hidden regardless of the grey…

Happy Hunting Armitageworld!!




23 comments on “Camo Armitage?

  1. sparkhouse1 says:

    Canadian public highschool was/is sorely lacking in ancient art, literature, mythology etc. I love your blog. Educational and entertaining! And really really interesting.

  2. Love this post! And I agree about Armitage invisibility. And I notice that his hoodie has pockets. Most do, of course. But the man hardly has his hands outside of his pockets these days. Kkhhh! I’m not implying anything other than he’s a relaxed fellow. Ha! Happy Thanksgiving!
    P.S. We’re also being a party of 2 and loving it for Thanksgiving–making favorite food recipes my way. Snap!

  3. Esther says:

    Hunting (yikes, not used to that here in the Netherlands), camouflage, Armitage and Perseus, wow! I love how you can link anything to the ancient world. 🙂
    Happy quiet Thanksgiving! Sounds great.

    • obscura says:

      I’m often a little alarmed by the path of my thoughts!

      Wisconsin is a big state for sportsmen in all seasons…given the number of people out in search of the “monster buck” the incidence of accidental injuries is relatively low. (Personally, I glad my husband is unable to do much hunting anymore…I’m not a big fan of game meat – or Gorgons :D.)

  4. linnetmoss says:

    I’ve noticed that Diana Gabaldon uses the word “grampus” a lot. Before her, I had never heard of it.

  5. KellyDS says:

    yes, wearing orange when out and about during this time of year is essential in rural areas; I learned that the hard way. I was 11 yrs old, letting my dog have a run in the woods, walking with my dad, when we were shot at by a hunter. I think he was just giving a warning shot for my dog but it was clear that he didn’t see my dad or I. my dad dropped to the ground, involuntary PTSD response, and I thought he’d gotten shot. very scary!

    • obscura says:

      Yikes!! I stay as far as I can from hunting areas. I was just reading that a hunter was killed this week by a stray round. It’s not common, but it happens.

  6. Hariclea says:

    these are some some connections!! love that Cellini! one sculptor i always wish i could go back in time and meet 🙂
    Invisibility must be superpower of desire nr 1 🙂 Wonder what RA would do if he could be invisible for a day? Someone should ask him 🙂
    And yes the best thing about the outfit was the short jacket :-p

    Hope you’ll have a relaxed and fun Thanksgiving! xx

  7. Hariclea says:

    oh and special thanks for linking to the older thighs post! i love discovering the oldies but goldies! Never seen that photo with the long hair as well, oh wow…. i wish he’d wear that for a while it’s gorgeous… but so are the legs! I’m happy with the return of the poured on jeans as the Leeds looks sported baggy bottoms and obscured the thighs! sigh 🙂 The problems we have to deal with, eh?

  8. Guylty says:

    Camouflage in the ancient world – fascinating. My first thought was Harry Potter (invisibility cloak). And yes, grey is such a fitting colour for this time of year, in Berlin 😉

    • obscura says:

      I thought of that too…I suppose a desire to be unseen is common to most cultures.

      I love grey as a neutral (much better than beige), but unless one is deliberately trying to be unnoticed, it can use a pop of color 😀

  9. Servetus says:

    This made me nostalgic. Bro got a 10 pointer this morning.

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