Werewolf Radar: This Little Heart of Swine by Nate Balding

Graffiti Curse Symbols by John Johnson

Werewolf Radar: This Little Heart of Swine
By Nate Balding
Published Issue 114, June 2023

Fire up the smoker and cue that barb — it’s grillin’ season. And the animal préféré of Athena’s unstoppable party-javelin has ever been a slow-cooked swine. There’s loin (hell yeah); there’s shoulder (falling off like butter); there’re ribs (would be willing to see a genetically repurposing for more short rib even with the invariable backlash of The Centipig); aaaand weirder parts! Namely the hairy surprise you get when your tongue first touches the intestines you were tricked into consuming.

“It’s Sunday,” they said. “Jesus would’ve eaten it and been happy.”

Some would posit that Jesus would’ve been a PETA guy on a strict Judeo-Ketist diet (“He who casts the first stone … is about to get pretty toned” —Abs 24:7) that would deny unclean beasts but I don’t have enough pages to commit a schism here. So, in the interest of pursuing the level of comity effused during most summer engagements involving either family or co-workers, feel free to solve by casually introducing that idea into the conversation your racist uncle is having with the other guy who brought a “Just Call Me Hugh Chefner” apron to the picnic and wait for a flume of white smoke to declare a winner.

Yes, summer is a time of togetherness; of neighbors coming together. Of teenage dreams made real when a hot day turns into a warm night of dancing that ends with the tender promise of new love. Of finding out that someone you know has made multiple jars of pickled pigs’ feet.

And yet it should be a time of fear. Total fear. For Gloson runs endlessly and holds pig roasting in ill regard.

Gloson, the demon pig of Sweden — not to be confused with Abe Froman, the Sausage King of Chicago (with whom all hogs have a deeply metaphysical conflict even in their stabile belief that the cycle of birth and death ends in a heavenly joining between Pickle and Pigskin; this is all fully detailed in the Swineraq cut of Babe 2) — is a terrifying albino boar with a razor spine that pursues anyone attempting to experience a supernatural and divinative connection with a deity through a solo trip into hostile land. Colonizers might see it analogous to the Aboriginal Walkabout. Others, also colonizers, might see it as the way they feel after they paid a bunch of much better climbers to get them to the top of Mount Everest. In any case these spirit-trekkers were lucky to get away without facing Gloson.

As with all folkloric accounts recorded descriptions differ — one from the 19th century finds a person fleeing from a monster with 100 eyes across its body “shining like vile fire” and presumably fulfilling a prophecy where it inspires a split 7-inch between your cousin’s black metal band and your cousin’s other, worse, black metal band — but the mythological throughline has it that it:

Is a pig.

Has a crazy exposed table saw in lieu of a spine.

Fucking loves the beach. More than any late recollection of the surfer helping you get your groove back could ever inspire. This thing snuffles waves like a bachelor in paradise realizing that their someone has never been in the game but is still out there.



Except here in this reality.

Murders people by running them down and either immediately chopping them in half from the nethers up or allowing them to slow-ride over days until they’re split into a pair of meaty chunks. It’s not exactly barbecue but it does have the same gastronomical philosophy re: Time spent making it right.

Paranormal preparedness would have one simply deciding against going into a months-long walking trance wherein a series of monsters must be battled before receiving a deilogue (not a word but then again why not a word?), but Gloson apparently has capabilities reaching outside the fevered vision of these ambulatory-yet-enervated wood-haunting clerics. Accounts involving people going about their day and happening into a ghostly sow allege that Gloson has some influence in the physical world and that it still carries awful import. One tale involves a woman who encountered a speeding spirit-boar and, sidestepping it like a character from a surely never-before-created Western I’m pitching to Disney as The Matadorian, caught the edge of Gloson’s charge with the hem of her dress and subsequently suffered a bedriddening illness, as if the mere propinquity of the creature is enough to engender infection.

Humanity is not without protection from this porcine peril however. Folklore offers two solutions: Crossing your legs or using 7-year-old magical nuts.

It’s unclear from research exactly what is meant by 7-year-old magical nuts but after googling it a subpoena magically appeared in my hands so I recommend just going with the easier thing. So should you see a giant white pigsaw running at you from the depths of the grill smoke in the park this summer — possibly in a dream built on lessons you learned by watching Bear Grylls and deciding it didn’t seem that hard to be a weird lone survivalist —  just do what seems natural and try and hide the fact that in that moment you really, really need to pee.

Turns out it hates that. 

Have questions about the paranormal?
Send them to werewolfradarpod@gmail.com or on Twitter: @WerewolfRadar.
It’s a big, weird world. Don’t be scared. Be Prepared.

Nate Balding is a freelance humanoid who occasionally manifests in print and can most likely be seen at Werewolf Radar. Should you wish to hear him manifest audibly you can do so at the aforementioned Werewolf Radar’s associated podcast on Spotify and Apple, and if anything ever becomes humorous again, on a variety of stand up stages around the nation. If you’re truly craving further content there’s always @Exploder on Twitter — even if it is only a form of digital self flagellation at this point. His one thing that he considers actually accomplished was this time he was published in the journal Nature and then later collected into a volume called Futures from Nature, still available in places that have things.

Check out Nate’s May Werewolf Radar install, Fouke The Police, or head to our Explore section to see more of his work.

1 thought on “Werewolf Radar: This Little Heart of Swine by Nate Balding”

  1. Pingback: Werewolf Radar: Last Dance With Buried Jane by Nate Balding - BIRDY MAGAZINE

Comments are closed.