Sep. 9th, 2011

quick hits

My twitter account is full of randomness today, but at least it's moved from trauma to humor. Sort of. After discussing the inevitability of flashbacks due to a combination of 9/11 Anniversary coverage and the FIRES that are filling the sky with smoke, raining ash on homes, and making the air smell of burning (yeah, no flashback potential there AT ALL), we decided that the best solution would be for TX to send truckloads of shamwows to the flooded areas. They mop up the water, send them back, and we wring them out over the fires.
Done.
Now, we will address the deficit and jobs crisis. Ok, no we won't. We'll actually address Hollywood and it's crazy crazy remakes.

me: Russell Crowe as Javert. Hugh Jackman as Valjean. I may need to sit down.
Jaye: wow. is Hollywood making a movie just for you?
Man, they might be. They really, really might be. I'll have to take my dad! (Les Miz is one of our shared musical interests!)

And today's moment of Latin Zen: [This is full of Classics snark, and if you aren't familiar with at least I, Claudius it may make no sense.]
We were discussing historiography, Livy, and Livy's presumed friendship with Augustus. Livy produced an incredible body of work, a complete history of Rome from its founding to his present day in 142 books, writing an average of 3 books per year for forty years. The problem: only thirty-something books survived to modern day, and none of them about Livy's own time. Certain hints from later historians writing about Livy, as well as textual interpretations by modern historians, create a belief that Livy and Augustus got along very well, shared some opinions and values, and were quite possibly friends. One item that is cited as evidence is the fact that Livy was a tutor to young Claudius.
So one of the young things in my class (possibly stalling for time, I admit), asked whether there was any possibility that Livy could have known at the time of his teaching that Claudius would one day be the emperor.
I thought to myself, "NO WAY."
And then the prof said, "ABSOLUTELY NOT," making big negative arm motions.
It made me laugh.
I have to keep reminding myself, unformed larvae, unformed larvae, unformed larvae*. Some of them may be up to their ears in classical civ at that age, after all, I was, but the prof made a good point when he said that he didn't want to assume too much about the class's knowledge of the Augustan Age. (Not that I could really be considered an expert or anything, geez. It just feels like I've been pickling in random classical trivia from that general period for most of my life.)
Anyway. ZEN LATIN SNARK.
[*For all that I snark at them, they're actually quite good at Latin. Better than I am, most days!]

I walked back to my office from class and it was, alas, still really hot even with the "cool snap" we're getting. 90-something is no joke when you're walking across campus in blue jeans.

And I just took some time explaining to someone the difference between block level and in-line tags in XHTML, but I don't think I did it very well. I should work on that. Yay for validating her markup for class, though.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/493348.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Nov. 30th, 2010

end of semester!

Ok, I have just completed my last evening of Latin translation homework for the semester. w00t! I've had a ton of fun in class but I can't deny I will be so happy that I will have free time again. I want to draw and quilt a whole lot more in 2011.

So, things to do: stock up on band-aids. I thought I had some (I may in fact have some somewhere), but when I sliced my thumb open on the cheese grater (talent, I know) I couldn't find any. So I'm typing this with gauze taped all over my thumb.

Once the Latin Final is done, it'll be time to get my Capricorn on for the Merlin Zodiac Art Challenge. And I still have a big list of exchanges, fests, and challenges to work on.

Time for ice cream and Avatar: The Last Airbender before bed.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/466363.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Nov. 18th, 2010

life imitates art

I just got home from a very enjoyable evening at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston with my Continuing Studies Advanced Visual Arts classmates and our teacher. We stormed the European Galleries building and saw lots of cool stuff, but more importantly discussed the lives and times of many artists, the tragedies and joys and physical hardships that influenced their work. We also did a lot of interesting technical discussion, on media and material, the function and meaning of art in its various times, and the nature of aesthetics. It was great.
I love visiting museums with people, although I admit I am not always a good co-museum-visitor. I tend to bounce from place to place without rhyme or reason, only occasionally reading the signs, or I will systematically go through a gallery in such a way as to hit every single piece in the least number of steps. Or sometimes I'll just sit on a bench and slowly rotate my view until I've taken it all in.
So now I want to paint. I have paints, even, but not much time. I need to get my workspace set up so that I can leave my in-progress stuff on the drafting table and not have to do an elaborate song-and-dance every time I want to paint.

In other news, photos have been posted from the epic week of Jaye, including some nice ones of Houston sights, but nothing from the Observatory because I left my camera at home. Besides, it was dark. Still, our tours of the various small telescopes on the terrace and the two big research domes at the George Observatory were excellent. We did a lot of running around in the dark with our hands in the air squeeing, "Space! It's really big!" Seriously. I mean, people who know us will just know that we did exactly that, but it's not a cute text message code or something. We jumped up and down and waved our arms in the "touchdown" manner.
It was awesome.

As for the Zoo, I may need to go back one day just to sit around the elephant enclosure for a while because, OMG BABY ELEPHANTS! So adorable.
One of them tried very hard to escape from the stalls where they were being bathed, and the tiny one kept poking his trunk through the bars at his slightly bigger friend as if to say, "Hey, Baylor? Wanna play? Huh? Huh? Huh?"

Latin continues to be hilarious in the way that it can be for me since my grade is just so much happy funtimes. We're reading about the martyrdom of St Alban in Bede's Ecclesiastical History of Britain. It's funny, but the medieval stuff really is easier, despite the way that it warps the Classical grammar and conventions. Medieval Latin syntax starts to resemble English syntax, so it's amazingly simple to connect concepts. Sometimes there are things that are just weird, but so far it's been very straightforward and also quite fascinating. I may ask about auditing next semester after all - if the professor doesn't mind a tourist.

I had my first of four dental visits this afternoon, and spent the latter half of my workday with a Novocain-induced numb jaw. I had to hold a napkin to my mouth for part of it because I was drooling all over my desk. Very professional. Still, at least it's done, and I can get all of it done now before I need any major surgical work. I am thankful that it's a relatively straightforward couple of procedures.
Although I do have to say, contrary to the conversation I had at lunch with coworkers, those needles they used to numb my jaw were HUGE! HUUUUGE!

Now I am going to do some translating, and mourn the fact that I haven't been able to draw all week. Perhaps this weekend.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/464271.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Nov. 10th, 2010

Latin for fun and profit

LOL, the medieval story we got to translate in class was HILARIOUS: guy kills enemy, makes a cup out of enemy's skull, marries enemy's daughter, delights in giving daughter the cup and inviting her to have a drink with dear ole dad, daughter plots and kills the guy. Fun times with barbarians!
And now, guess what?

We're reading GEOFFREY OF MONMOUTH, you guys. A story about HENGIST.  LOLZ forever.

Ahem. Yeah, I can be serious.  Someday. There are tales of SPACE: IT'S REALLY BIG! \o/ plus cute baby elephants, the biker invasion of Galveston Island, airport delays with bonus beagle action, and an XTREME QUILT SHOW experience to be blogged, maybe.  Eventually.  Some of the photos are on Flickr already.

Seriously:
SPACE! IT'S REALLY BIG!! \o/ ♥ ♥


This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/463782.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Nov. 4th, 2010

Fun times with Jaye and the world

So after my brief Twitter encounter with Jaye trying to figure out how to say "Fuck you, bitch!" in Latin, I mentioned it to the guy sitting next to me in class - right when one of those brilliant silences fell upon the classroom.
So my prof ended up taking the first few minutes of class discussing how one might figure out "Fuck you, bitch!" in Latin, given that it was a difficult structure in English in the first place. (Is it actually an imperative? Is it, in fact, more indicative? How do you deal with 'bitch' when the Latin for dog is identical in both male and female genders?) And it turns out that sexual insults in Latin are heavily gendered, so there are special ones for men based on twisted Roman ideas of masculinity and the place of the "real man" in sexual encounters, and others for women based on the typical property rights issues. The prof also gave us all a reference to The Latin Sexual Vocabulary.
In conclusion, "Vae te, scorte!"
Thank you, Latin 201.

On Tuesday, I worked the morning at the polls since one of Mom's regular workers had to go to a meeting, then went home and cuddled Gabi, then went to pick Jaye up from the airport. We had a lovely dinner at the Red Lion pub with strange but delicious British-Indian-TexMex fusion, and hung out a bit watching the returns.
Yesterday, Jaye and I ran out to the grocery store and the drug store (because of course I got terribly congested the day before she arrived - argh, it's just like our trip to London!) and to drop off my rent and to take a tour of the neighborhood. Then we grabbed lunch on the Rice campus and I went to class, then we tried to hit the science museum, but they close at 5 and it was already almost 4, so we went to the gift shop instead.
Then we went to Rothko Chapel and the Byzantine Fresco Museum, which are both part of the Menil Collection.
We picked up Kim to have some excellent BBQ in the cold and rainy night. Goode Company is a mostly outdoor joint, but they have plastic tenting around the perimeter and heaters running the length of the patio roof, so we ate outside. The BBQ was delicious as always. Nom.
Post-BBQ we scored a table at Inversion Coffee, which was a bit more crowded than usual since another local coffeehouse, Agora, burned to the ground over Halloween weekend. Their crowd has been looked for replacement hang-outs, apparently, and bringing business to other locally owned joints around the neighborhood.

I have done no writing and very little drawing in this time, as expected. Maybe I might get a bit done during our downtime, but I'm not fussed over it, really.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/463599.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Sep. 10th, 2010

stuff and things

Ok, so I can predict things pretty well, because last time I posted I said that I would screw up in class after thinking I had things down, and lo - I did!  I talked a lot more in general, but I also had totally done half the sentences wrong.  What fun!  I commiserated with a couple of classmates afterward. We all feel like idiots, so at least there's that much consolation.

In other news, yesterday evening Mom and I went to a lecture by Retired Colonel Ann Wright about her experiences with the military, diplomacy, and the Gaza Flotilla.  She was really quite amazing.

Now I am working on my art entries for the [community profile] eid_ka_chand community challenge. Fun times!

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/454353.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Sep. 3rd, 2010

well, crap

Note to self: don't embed stuff from Deepest Sender.
The bulk of my text for that post was lost, because it came after the embed code from Youtube, which apparently ate it all.  I am a bit peeved about that, since it was some cool stuff.  May try to recreate it later.

Summary: Contact by Carl Sagan is a great book, better, as one would suppose, than the movie. Math is magic.

In other news, Latin class continues to go pretty well.  But I find that when I have the translation down and felt it was pretty easy, the class as a whole seems to be fumbling around blindly without a grammar book. This means that we spent a lot of time today on sentence diagramming, which is fine - it's how one learns. I just figured it was best done before class. I'm going to continue to just sit in the back and chuckle over Cicero, and posting this pretty much guarantees that next time I get called on I will have no idea what I'm doing. :P
Thank goodness for the Perseus Project, though. I haven't had to buy a dictionary or a grammar yet, and using them as searchable databases instead of paper pages is actually quite a lot easier.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/453987.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Aug. 23rd, 2010

goodbye, drawing time

So I enrolled in a credit Latin course at the university, because I can. I opted for the Intermediate course as a review, and boy am I glad I did because the first assignment is kicking my ass. I am almost two hours in and almost halfway through the paragraph we were assigned. (The paragraph! Argh. I used to sit around reading Cicero's letters all day, I should be able to do this!)
I am getting better, maybe, as I go.  Or at least feeling less like an idiot.  We'll see how it looks when I get it to the classroom.  The nice thing about taking the course now is that the Grammar book and the Dictionaries are almost all online in their entirety. I love the Perseus Project! 
I'll still probably fork over for a physical grammar, though - looking stuff up in the ebook version is giving me a headache. 
Note to self, though - I'm in this for credit, it's ok to speak up when I know the answer. 

Someday I will have time to draw again!

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/452566.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

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