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Hod (Höðr)

Life stories just don’t get much more tragic than Hod’s. Sure, as the son of Odin and Frigg, he’s born a prince of the Asgard. But he’s also born with a serious disability: blindness. That makes it kind of tough to join all the other kids in swordplay, archery, hand-to-hand combat—you know, normal kid stuff. Then, as if that weren’t bad enough, Loki guides Hod’s aim in shooting his brother, Balder, with mistletoe, the one thing that can kill him. Balder dies, and we’re guessing Hod dies a little inside, too. Then he dies for real after Dad and his giantess mistress spawn Hod’s freakishly fast-growing half-brother whose sole purpose in life is to kill him as punishment. This sad end to a sad life is enough to make you break out the Kleenex. Or maybe a pint of double-fudge chunk. Go ahead. We won’t tell.

Basic Information

NameHod (Höðr)
Nickname“The Blind God,” “Thrower of the Mistletoe,” “Baldr’s Slayer” (Skáldskaparmal XIII)
Hod the Phone
Ho-d No He Didn’t!
Current cityHel (Sent here by my half-brother Vali)

Work & Education

OccupationBeing blind makes it hard to do some of the stuff other gods do. But I’m an important companion to Hel.
EducationAsgard School for the Blind


Political viewsEqual opportunities and rights for those with disabilities.

Family & Friends (& Enemies)

ParentsOdin and Frigg
SiblingsBalder and Hermod
Half-brothers Thor, Vidar, and Vali
ChildrenNone—I get sent to Hel before I can reproduce.
FriendsHel is my constant companion.
EnemiesLoki, Mistletoe, and Vali


Relationship statusNone. Accidentally killing Balder the Golden Boy doesn’t exactly make me popular with the ladies (or anyone else, for that matter).
Interested inA kind and gentle goddess who’s not scared off by a difficult past and doesn’t mind moving to Hel. Looks aren’t so important to me.


Quotations“Don’t make no sense lightin’ candles / There’s too much moonlight in my eyes / I met a blind man / Who taught me how to see . . . yeah / Blind man / Who could change night into day.”
– Aerosmith

“Death is no more than passing from one room into another. But there’s a difference for me, you know. Because in that other room I shall be able to see.”
– Helen Keller

“They also serve who only stand and wait.”
– John Milton, “When I Consider How My Light is Spent (On His Blindness)”

“An eye for an eye only leads to more blindness.”
– Margaret Atwood

“To be, or not to be, that is the question: / Whether 'tis Nobler in the mind to suffer / The Slings and Arrows of outrageous Fortune, / Or to take Arms against a Sea of troubles.”
– William Shakespeare, Hamlet 3.1.55-58
Books“My Life had stood – A Loaded Gun –” by Emily Dickinson 
“When I Consider How My Light is Spent (On His Blindness)” by John Milton 
“The Garden of Forking Paths” by Jorge Luis Borges 
The Odyssey by Homer 
The Knight’s Tale by Geoffrey Chaucer 
Arrow of God by Chinua Achebe 
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë 
Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner 
King Lear by William Shakespeare 
Planet of the Blind by Steven Kuusisto 
MusicRay Charles 
Stevie Wonder 
Andrea Bocelli 
Wonder by Natalie Merchant 
One by Metallica (This song perfectly captures how I felt when I discovered I had killed my own brother.)
Spider Web by Joan Osborne (Ray Charles is so famous this artist wrote a song about him.)
The Consequence of Fratricide by Today I Caught the Plague (Killing your brother is never pretty.)
Cain Said to Abel by Bloc Party 
MoviesThe Stone Boy (The main character kills his brother by accident, too. It’s heartbreaking.)
A River Runs Through It (A story of two brothers. Proving that it’s not always a cake walk, but the bonds of true brotherhood run deep. Same deal with my next pick.)
Legends of the Fall 
At First Sight 
If You Could See What I Hear (I love movies where the differently-abled prove themselves to be just as able—and often, more interesting—than regularly-abled people!)
The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat 
Rain Man 
A Beautiful Mind 
TV ShowsSupernatural (Ah, brotherhood: It is all it’s cracked up to be. Even when you accidentally hurt one another, or are living in a swamp.)
Swamp Brothers 

Activities & Interests

LikesBow Control Laws
Eternal Brotherhood
Life after Death
Hel (the person)
Guide Dogs for the Blind
DISlikes Mistletoe
ActivitiesHanging out with Hel in Hel
Dreaming of revenge on Loki
Apologizing to Balder
Disability Studies
Weed Control
GroupsAsgard Gods
Sons of Odin
Disabled Peoples’ International (DPI) 
World Blind Union 

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