There was a death in my family yesterday. A very nice man, my father's brother-in-law's father, died at the age of- well, I can't remember the exact number, but over 90. He'd been sick for a while; I confess I'm not horribly shocked. Still, it's sad. I don't know if I'll be able to go to the funeral or not, considering that it's in Somerville, Mass, this weekend. I feel kinda bad- I want to pay my respects- but I don't think it will work out. It's a pretty long drive, especially when you tack on an extra hour for my parents to come get me.
Not much else to report; my life has been consumed by schoolwork. Tacita's definitely moving out next semester, it's finalized and everything. I've been eating lots of Ramen noodles. As in, an extreme amount. Like, that's all I eat for lunch and dinner. I feel collegiate. Or maybe just poor.
There's a holiday dinner tonight, though. Best go early.
Oh, but today in Myth class, the professor was talking about Achilles, the Greek hero of the Trojan War. See, Achilles' prophetic mother Thetis knew that if Achilles went to war, he'd die there. So Thetis dressed Achilles like a woman and sent him to live on the island of Scyros, hiding among the king's daughters. The Greeks discovered him when they came to Scyros, looking for him, and tested Lycomedes' wives and children by placing out two boxes as if they were merchants. The first box had combs, and jewels, and pretty clothes; the second had cool weaponry. Of course, Achilles went for the swords, while the women looked at the jewels, and the ruse was discovered, so he went to war after all.
Now, I'm sitting there smiling to myself as Clairmont says this, because I'm thinking about what it says about society at that time and the misogynism of Homer that a girl can't play with weaponry (I mean, really- clothes and jewels or a sharp blade? Which would you choose?). Then he says, "Now, one of the girls DID discover that Achilles was a young man, and she became pregnant..."
Oh yeah. THAT'S why girls don't play with swords.
Seriously, can you imagine how that went? Deidameia walks in on Achilles changing or something, and says, "Oh, I'm sorr- OH MY GOD YOU'RE NOT A GIRL! ...you're not a girl... and... WOW you wanna put that away? I mean, uhm... yeah... well... I guess I can overlook the fact that you've been cros-sdressing and hiding amongst my sisters and I for a while, and we'll just have sex right now, shall we?"
And naturally, Achilles is a hero, so he must have superior sperm. Like Heracles, who I like to think of as "Slow-Withdraw McGraw" or "Why They Invented Condoms." Honestly, not even Zeus had that many children in a 40-year-lifespan. For some reason, being a war hero with divine parentage means that you're free from impotence. Luckily for them, patrimony was a later invention.
It's probably for the best that anyone today boasting a divine parent lives in a box and wears tinfoil on their head. Besides the adversity Achilles would have to Trojans, your average hero would spend a FORTUNE in child support.