Wednesday, November 29, 2006


Closed?! What do you mean school is closed tomorrow?! They can't be closed! Not after I missed classes due to illness on Tuesday!


On the other hand this does give me more time to work on papers, but still.

A little icy rain and Texas freaks out.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Not dead!

I swear! Really, I might feel like death warmed over but I'm not dead.

About two weeks left of regular classes and a handful of papers due next week. Then on to finals.

Don't be surprised if I don't surface again until almost Christmas.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving (if you're State side). See you on the flip side.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Come See the Violence Inherent In the System

Unlike in Python no one is laughing.

Mostafa Tabatabainejad, a UCLA student, was repeatedly stunned with a Taser and then taken into custody when he did not exit the CLICC Lab in Powell Library in a timely manner.

I've talked about this else where but I'm livid about this, and thank god other students used their camera phones to record it.

I read about this over at Bitch PhD and there is some very interesting, to say the least, discussions going on in the comments (with my two cents through in).

"Here's your Patriot Act. Here's your Fucking Abuse of Power"

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Graduate Level Class Update

Thank you to everyone that commented with advise and kind words. I was approved to take the class as a Conference course, so it'll show up as a 4000 level on my transcript.

I've decided (thought it should have been plain to me earlier) that the girl who gave me the hardest time about the 5000 level class, and was the originator of the "No one will give you a rec letter' is a petty bitter person. I really should have known better than to talk to her since she is also the one that had a fit that I was in upper level History classes without taking the History Research Class.

You'd also think I'd know better than to ask my father advise about anything at time point in my life.

So, long story short (too late), my class line up for spring looks something like this:
Topics in Classic Myth (with the Prof who is trying to convince me to take Greek next semester instead of Latin)
Intro to History Research with Prof I like(Hey don't look at me like that, I've been waiting for a session that wasn't American History focused)
British Empire (with my fav Prof in the History Department)
Medieval History (This is a Saturday class. Only for you Medieval History would I give up sleeping in.)
Chaucer Conference Course

If the stars align correctly I should be done Thursday mid-day then be on a plane to K-zoo.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

'Girl' Gamer Rage Post

Quick post before I go back to completely putting off my research by playing Windwaker to my research.

Games 4 Girls at Gamestop: Gagging, Weeping, Bleeding From the Eyes

There are comments in there that display my frothing raging much more eloquently than I would. My first console game for LoZ: Link to the Past at age 12, you can bite me Gamestop and EB games.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Breaking Barriers, or An Undergraduate In a Graduate level class

Barriers are everywhere. Some are tangible. Some are invisible or imagined but no less daunting than the psychical ones.

Police tape around a crime scene. The only teenage girl in a highschool weight training class. The dividers put up in the once vaunted 'open class rooms'. A student with LDs in honors classes. The glass between an inmate and the family visiting them. A English major in a upper level chemistry class. A child safety gate.

If I'm approved by my Professor (and boy, do I wish the undergrad advisor had just told me to talk to him, since I have two other classes with him, instead of forwarding it to him but that's a different issue), I'll be crossing one of those invisible barriers. I've been told by several people since those wee hours of Friday morning that I have a lot of 'gaul', 'nerve', 'balls', and 'common sense'. Not mention a very strong look of disapproval from a senior and a lecture about how I'd ruined my chances of ever getting a letter of recommendation from anyone in the English department, that how dare I even think about a 5000 level class, and that it just isn't done.

Have I crossed a line?

Part of me wants to know why shouldn't I request approval for a class I want to take? I've always done so in the past, both in high school and at University. The worst that happens is that my Professor says no, that I'm not ready for the class. I'm not going to beat my breast, rend my clothing and wail like the a figure from Greek Tragedy. I sent a very nice polite email to the English advisor and acknowledged that it was a graduate level class and I would more than understand being turned down.

But there is another part of me that worries that I have crossed a line. That I look arrogant, naive, and foolish. That this is something that just isn't done.

More than that, part of me worries now that I was fooling myself and that I wouldn't be able to handle it. I'm struggling with my thesis for my paper on Chaucer's use of female assent in marriage and which books of the Canterbury tales to narrow my focus to. So how can I dare think that I could handle Chaucer's Literary Geography? I have doubts where I once had none.

Is a undergraduate trying to take a graduate level class a unpardonable sin? Will I be made to sew a red letter of some sort to my clothing? Your thoughts?

Friday, November 10, 2006

Friday Poetry: Fragments of Sappho

For this Friday poetry night I choice one of the fragments of Sappho. The text I'm working from is If Not, Winter translated by Ann Carson.

]I can
]would be for me
]to shine in answer
]having been stained

Thursday, November 09, 2006


A Letter to my University:

Dear University I attend,

Why when you finally offer a history class that's remotely focused on the medieval period, does the class have to be on a Saturday?

Also please to stop making the interesting classes in the English department 5000 level? I want to take that class on Chaucer's Literary Geography.

I would like to thank you for allowing me to charge my prescription to my college account.

Some Love,

Stop taking all my money.

No love,

Pretty boysPeople down stairs having a party,

Please stop having fun. No fun allowed on a school night. Wait one more bloody day will you.

You can keep your shirts off by the way.

Wishing you all looked at least the drinking age, so I wouldn't feel so much like a dirty old woman,


No one but you will probably notice that you'll be wearing the wrong period clothing when you show up for the roleplaying as Eleanor of Aquitaine
. You do not have the money to buy something or the skill to make something.

Deal with it.

No Love,
Your Bank Account

Updates: It has Been a Few Months

It has been more than a few months since those horrible gut-wrenching few weeks. Thing with my step-father* are...well I don't have contact with him unless my mum is there. He is in counseling and after the first few times my mother stop trying to give me updates because I bluntly told her "I didn't care". She though has never once asked me to forgive him, though he has once. I told him I couldn't.

Which sounds pretty cold hearted, but it's going to take years to forgive him.

Part of me wishes my mum had just kicked his ass to the curb, so didn't have to deal with him. She loves him and has forgiven him, and that is okay I guess. I want her to be happy.

I have new habits now. I look for his van on the street when I come home. I have my cell phone in my hand when I enter my condo alone. I put the slide lock on even when a friend is over. And other safety measures that are best left unsaid even if I am pseudonymous (because let's face it I've probably given enough clues that someone could piece together who I am, not to metion some of you have met me).

My mother keeps the extra key with her at all time (we still fight about her giving it back to me, she doesn't seem to understand why).

Overall I'm not more paranoid but more aware. I don't fear/suspect the man I pass walking to the store around 8pm more than I did before. I trusted my step-father on some level I wouldn't trust other men because he was my mother husband, despite other incidents that should have told me otherwise. Family is family I was taught, and I never had a reason to be wary of family.

Sometimes it is easier to not think about what happened and still think about him as the cool guy that plays Jazz and makes my mum smile. Sometimes I hate him so much I want to hurt something.

Most of the time I don't think about him at all, and that is the way it should be.

For new readers the posts "You didn't say no" and "Sometimes Blaming the Victim Works", are good background posts to understand this post better.

*(#2 not to be confused with my out of state step-da that was my 'dad' after my bio-dad died. Yes sometimes I wonder if my mother's multiple husbands, there were two more before my bio-dad, and my obsession interest in Wife of Bath are intermeshed.)

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

And Now For Something Completely Different

Edit: I should make clear that this exchange was with my mythology Professor.

Professor(smiling and to whole class): Remember Vote early and often.

Me (grinning): I think that illegal

Professor (laughing): I'm from Chicago that sort of things common practice.

Me: So are dead people voting, I still think its general frowned upon.

Professor: Now we don't want to be prejudiced against the dead or the undead.

Me (trying to picture a zombie voting): I don't think the Greeks had these issues sorts of issues.

Professor: No, they didn't dwell on zombies attending assemblies.

In my Chaucer class one of my fellow students had a "I think I voted' sticker on.

A is for Apple, V is for Vote

Even more yummy when sprinkled with cinnamon sugar and paired with a tall glass of ice cold milk.

In something that will interest more than just my mother (look mom I'm eating an apple!), I voted for the first time at a 'major' polling place. In the past I've lived in much smaller area with only a few polling places. There the chance of running into a candidates was pretty much nill. Here? I had to run the gauntlet of candidates, people wanting me to sign stuff, and guy with a Kinky sign handing out bumper stickers.

The ballot was long as hell, but I refuse to vote straight party even if they claimed you could still vote for individuals that weren't in your party on the ballot too (I'm an untrusting soul).

Now I will settle in to do some reading for classes and papers. Later I will watch the election episode of Futrama if CN doesn't show it.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Hello There Bloggers!

For those of you finding your way here from Bitch PhD, welcome! Pull up a chair and stayawhile. I promise I don't bite hard and I'm can type rationally. Really!

For those of you from google I hope you find whatever your looking for, expect for the person that search was for naked Tom Leykis. I'm still traumatized from that one I think.

Comments are always welcome and if you'd like to get a better sense of this blog take a look at some of the old posts featured in the left hand column.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Romance of the Rose and Vacuum Cleaners?

Now there are two things that normal aren't put together, huh? (Unless your copy of Romance of the Rose needs a good cleaning or you just rather vacuum the book up than read it. There would be a new excuse for professors: "My vacuum ate it.")

My Hover has died. Well it still technically 'works' in the sense that when you turn it on it makes noise and pretends to be cleaning. The fact is it isn't actually picking up anything. I've cleaned the filters, changed the bag, checked for obstructions, checked the brushes, and still it will not clean worth a damn. It's had a long run, as it was my mum's before it was mine, but I think its time for a new one.

I need something that will clean carpets and tile floors, any one have any suggestions?
Also I'm looking to pick up my own copy of Romance of the Rose, but I'm not sure which translation to pick up. Which translation to you own, or teach with?

(repost)And it starts some Ben Jonson

(For some reason this post disappered from my blog, so here it is again. For the newest post look down one.)
First a poem:

Ben Jonson

To My Book

It will be looked for, book, when some but see

Thy title, Epigrams, and named of me,

Thou should'st be bold, licentious, full of gall,

Wormwood and sulphur, sharp, and toothed withal ;

Become a petulant thing, hurl ink and wit

As madmen stones, not caring whom they hit.

Deceive their malice, who could wish it so.

And by thy wiser temper, let men know

Thou art not so covetous of least self-fame

Made from the hazard of another's shame ;

Much less, with lewd, profane, and beastly phrase,

To catch the world's loose laughter, or vain gaze.

He that departs with his own honesty

For vulgar praise, doth it too dearly buy.

After a brief break the end of last week and the start of this week the cycle of test and papers starts again. Halloween was a blast, holidays during the week seem to extend the weekend even when you DON'T have days off. But back to real life where I'm not American Mcgee's Alice or Romana II. It was a nice break, and I adore my 'ass kicking' boots I bought for my costume.

What I don't love is my grade on my paper from History of British Literature, and I suspect the fact that he read my other paper (for the other class I have with him) first, and the first paper was much better. The topic I picked wasn't easily discussed with the resources I had and I should have taken a draft into him when I was having problems wording part of my argument in a way that non mind readers could understand.

Meme, or Procrastination is Fun

Gacked this from Bardiac
Bold the ones you've done

01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain (not all the way up, but to about 16,000 feet)
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said “I love you” and meant it
09. Hugged a tree

10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise

14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby’s diaper

21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight

28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can

32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total solar eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment

39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was drunk.
42. Had amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country

44. Watched wild whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe.
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach

50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your CDs
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Played touch football
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an “expert”
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark
88. Kissed on the first date
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house (well a condo)
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one/both of your parents (well, not literally, but I assume cremation counts?)
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently well enough to have a decent conversation
95. Performed in Rocky Horror
96. Raised (raising) children (child)
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
98 seems to be missing?
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn’t stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn’t have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Touched a stingray
110. Broken someone’s heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a facial part pierced other than your ears
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery (it's pretty much major anytime it's me, right?)

120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours (I think, see #119 above)
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper

129. Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
131. Parasailed
132. Touched a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad - and the Odyssey
135. Selected one “important” author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you’re living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn’t know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146. Dyed your hair
147. Been a DJ
148. Shaved your head
149. Caused a car accident
150. Saved someone’s life