November 8th

The Spanish conquistador Hernan Cortes had already left a bloody trail of corpses behind him as he marauded through Mexico, and his smug sense of cultural superiority, demonstrated at every opportunity, was matched only by his insatiable greed for gold.  Yes despite all that, the Aztec ruler Moctezum II allowed Cortes inside the capital of Tenochtitlan for some reason when the conquistador came calling on November 8, 1519.

Tradition has it that Moctezuma believe his visitor was the human incarnation of the greeat god Quetzalcoard, although many historians now dispute that.  Whatever the reason the gates were opened, it was a colossal blunder.  Cortes accepted the king's gracious hospitality, as well as his lavish gifts (except the women proffered; that would have been a sin).  Then, as a thank-you, he made his host a prisoner in his own palace.  Les than eight months later, Moctezuma II was dead, with the Aztec Empire quickly to follow.


In Japan, Fuigo Matsuri, the Shinto Festival of Kitchen Gods, honors the god and goddess of kitches, Oki-Tsu-Hiko-No-Kami and his wife Oki-Tsu-Hime_No-Kami.  Their main duty is to look after the cauldron in which water is boiled.  Another Japanese deity associated with the kitchen is Hettsui-No-Kami, the goddess of the kitchen range.

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