Yup’ik leader, Dr. Paul John, was here in Bethel last week giving a lecture. We’ve reported on the Yup’ik advice he gave to listeners. As KYUK’s Sophie Evan reports, he ended his speech with a very short Yup’ik story. Sophie Evan has more.
Dr. John’s short story began after he was asked to tell a story, he chuckled and commented that we would be there all night once he started, but that this short story would have to do for now.
Per Dr. Paul John, he says that Once upon a time, when people were able to change into anything, well, we still have the Ircinraq who can still change,
Side note, an Ircinraq as a legendary creature, one side of which is an animal and the other a man, said to inhabit mountain areas.
So, there was a man who was getting ready to go out for the day, before he left, he changed himself into a mouse, and put an ornamental strip of rendered seal blubber on his head and down the middle of his forehead, Cukluq, as he went about his day, a drop of seal oil would land on the snow, at which time, the man/mouse would whip it up into agutaq.
Side note, Agutaq is a Yup’ik dessert made of animal fat, snow, and berries. So, the man/mouse continued on, stopping to make and eat agutaq every time there was a drop of seal oil.
Pretty soon, there was no more oil to drip, and he starved to death. The End.
Dr. John said he does have stories to tell, but that everyone would be sitting here for a very long time, so in order to prevent disobedience and to satiate the need to hear a story, naigcailkucirluci, this short story will have to do.
Last cut “……quyana……..aa’ang……… applause.”
For KYUK news I’m Sophie Evan.