Wednesday, January 31, 2007

"You are a Person of Culture, Cultivate It"

It's the festival of Hecate At the Crossroads, today. You may have heard of Hecate, but if you have, it's probably as the witch-goddess because that's how disaffected Hellenistic Neopagan teenagers like to see her, so they can call her their patron goddess and dress all in black and pretend to communicate with the dead. Or maybe you've just read Shakespeare's Macbeth. But in reality, while she was goddess of witchcraft and necromancy, that wasn't the most important aspect of her.

As goddess of crossroads, Hecate was depicted as having three faces- a young woman's, a middle-aged woman's, and an old woman's. Three masks would be placed on a pole at the crossroad (a Y-intersection) so each faced a different direction. This festival honored that aspect of the goddess-- as a deity of the wilderness and untamed areas. Travelers left her food as offerings to ensure safe passage through dangerous areas-- especially women who were traveling alone.

If you go onto Hellenismos discussion boards talking about who people feel is their patron god or goddess, a lot of people claim Hecate. This amuses me because half of them haven't a clue what she's about except that the witchcraft connection will annoy their parents.

--------------------

Last night at lab I switched partners, but I swear it wasn't because the girls kicked me out. My new lab partner just joined the class and she knew me from Classical Mythology last semester. I'll mention her enough to name her, I guess... Her name will be Maritima ("Of the sea," because she's studying marine biology). Anyway, the lab thing worked out anyway, for last week-- turns out the group section of the lab wasn't that big a deal.

In other lab news, turns out I don't have to worry about lab reports for Biology. You have no idea how happy I was when I learned this. I was dancing. On the inside, because I was in Chem lab.

--------------------

Today's Bio lab took forever. I was so proud that I left yoga early enough to get there on time, with enough time to make sure I looked reasonably presentable and didn't smell (which meant five minutes early). But then I was looking at bacteria and protists for hours and I had to squeeze the wood-digesting bacteria out of a termite's butt, and the first time I didn't do it right and the second time I squeezed too hard, killed it, and still didn't do it right, so the professor had to do it for me on account of my lab partner being adverse to the squeezing of termites. The professor didn't even try to be humane, like I had been- he just disemboweled the little bug and tossed him aside, without even crushing his head so he'd die fast. And the professor didn't even do it quickly enough! Termite butt bacteria-- which, in case you're curious, are the things that make it possible for termites to digest wood-- can't survive long exposed to oxygen, and he waited too long before he put the cover slip on so the bacteria was dead anyway. I mean, we saw them, but not for very long.

Plus Maritima, who is also in Bio, was asking for a partner for this project we're doing on phyla, and I thought to myself, "I'd love to, as long as we aren't expected to work with our regular lab partners" but it came out as "Well, uhm, okay, but I have to, uhm, ch-check with my lab partner, but if she doesn't, like-- if she doesn't want to work with me, then I-- I mean, I guess..."

At that, she said, "Oh, okay, it's cool," and then another guy came up behind us and said, "Maritima, I don't have a partner for the project" (except he used her real name). So she partnered with him, on account of his actually being able to talk correctly, and then I learned that my lab partner already had a project partner and I would up having to wait around until everyone else partnered off. Luckily the girl who wound up without a partner was my lab partner last semester, so it's not a total stranger. Or a guy.

I really do talk like that, by the way. And Maritima's a girl, so it's not just guys that make me stammer. If I don't know someone, or I only know them a little, or I feel uncomfortable around them for any reason, it comes out peppered with "uhms" and half-finished sentences trailing off into new phrases. I basically have to have my words prepared ahead of time, in my head at least.

I wasn't exactly expecting Maritima to ask me to work with her right after she asked Incredibly Hot Guy (who's best friend, Flirts With TAs, is in the class so he had a partner already). I mean, like, hell of a comedown. Thus, I was hopelessly unprepared.

---------------------

Anyway, lab had plenty of awkwardness, for me, and it let out at 4:45, giving me fifteen minutes to run back to my dorm, get my personal statement for the Healthcare seminar thing, and run back to Dimond Library for the 5:00 meeting. Then I read my stupid personal statement on "Why I want to be a doctor--" you know, I had the worst trouble writing that, because I honestly haven't a clue why I want to be a doctor. But that's an issue for another day. I spouted off something about fascination with human physiology that made me sound cold and a great deal like Dr. House, and then ran back here at 5:30 to quickly change my shirt and go to dinner with Loquatia before swing class.

I was tired and under dressed-- I was still wearing workout pants and I'd just thrown on a T-shirt in my rush, and everyone else looked like they were going to class-- when I got to Swing, and emotionally, I was completely frazzled. Add in the fact that this week, the numbers of attractive guys without pre-determined dance partners (I don't know if they were single-- but they didn't have dance partners) was double last week's number and that we were learning new steps very quickly, and you have me stammering and stumbling around for an hour, watching the clock and wishing my hands weren't sweating so much.

Great.

----------------------

What is it about Wednesdays? They sucked last semester, too.


My Social Anxiety Level: 68%

"You have high social anxiety.
You have a pretty serious social phobia, and it effects your life more than you may realize.
It's possible that you've made yourself comfortable by avoiding situations you dread.
But don't be fooled - you still probably need professional help." Yeah, well, tell me something I don't know...

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Sorry, I put my comments about Hecate on the preceeding post.

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