3rdragon: (Default)
I usually ignore these, or look at them and say, "But I don't know any historical personages who were known for being good parents. I'll stick with mine, thanks!" This one, however, piqued my interest. I have no particular intention of answering it, but I will tell you a story, because that's what I do.

A little over four years ago, I was a newly-arrived first-year. I had recently returned from three days tramping over a soggy mountain in pouring rain, and was, at this point, unpacked (or, at least, I had books on shelves and Lucinda was friendly with the network and there were enough clothes in the closet that I wasn't living out of boxes, which are the important parts). I had met my roommate, and her mother had flown up from Florida, and they were off somewhere purchasing whiteboards and bed risers and a 50-ft ethernet cable so we didn't tripwire ourselves on my 25-ft one, which, contrary to popular belief, was not anything like long enough.

So I was alone in the room. A young woman with brown hair in a braid down to her waist, either entering or leaving the room around the corner from mine, noticed that my door was open and poked her nose in. "Hello," she said, "I'm [livejournal.com profile] teaclouds, but not actually the one who lives in this room; I live over there" (she pointed across the hall and down a ways) "and I'm one of the HPs -- House Presidents." We chatted, and she told me who my neighbors were, and I sorted out the disambiguation of names, and what with one thing and another, she wandered over and considered my bookshelf -- with some authority, recognizing [livejournal.com profile] sartorias's Crown Duel, and inquiring about Court Duel, "Is that the sequel?" She also approved of the fact that both my roommate and I had copies of Pride and Prejudice, which was revealed to be her favorite book. After a while she wandered away again.

Within an hour or so, I met the other House President, who also discussed the neighbors with me, approved Pride and Prejudice (which I had not yet read at that point, and promptly decided that I'd better hurry up and do so if I was going to live with these people for any length of time), and concluded, in general, that "I would fit in."

That evening, or perhaps the next day, when Roommate and Mother were off again, hunting for inflatable flamingos and margarita glasses, I met [livejournal.com profile] operafloozy-actually-my-neighbor, who approved of Pride and Prejudice as pointed out to her by [livejournal.com profile] teaclouds, then exclaimed, from halfway across the room, "Patricia C. Wrede!" pronouncing it correctly, ree-dee. Upon further examination of my bookshelf, she told me that I needed to come to SSFFS. Since SSFFS was one of the things that I distinctly remembered from visiting on Accepted Students Day, I told her that I intended to. "No," she said, "you REALLY need to come to SSFFS." I did not object, and we had further iterations of this conversation over the weeks before the first meeting, with occasional input from [livejournal.com profile] estelwen. I think that by the time the first meeting actually happened, they would have marched me there in a straightjacket had I shown the slightest resistance. I suppose her impression of me was also tempered by the fact that I was not in tears upon the sight of the room, which there was apparently precedent for.

I can't recall if [livejournal.com profile] estelwen judged the Miriam by her book covers. I rather suspect she did, and, having the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy on my college bookshelf (if not the Silmarillion . . . at least, I don't think I had the Silmarillion at that point), I imagine I passed muster.
3rdragon: (Default)
I am unpacked and my room is (mostly) clean. It only took a month-plus (admittedly a month that a) included a week and a half of me doing nothing because I'd just gotten my wisdom teeth out and b) was fairly hot, off and on, so moving boxes of stuff and working in my room was unfeasible). But I have now successfully absorbed an entire* dorm room worth of stuff into my already-full-of-stuff Philadelphia-home room**.

Cut for lots of long babbling )

So I guess what I'm saying is, "High School Miriam, sometimes I feel like I don't know you at all. I'm pretty sure that I'm happier being now-me than I was being you, which I suppose is a good thing, at least from this end. I'm glad that I/we/you got back into writing. I may sometimes wonder a bit about your decisions, but you managed to pick a college where I had a marvelous four years, and I will say that you definitely had good taste in friends.

footnotes on the above cut )
3rdragon: (Default)
For those of you who don't follow along on twitter or some closer approximation of real life:

  1. I must be feeling better.  Despite an hour of trying, I was unable to sleep past 7am.
  2. The part where running out of energy means crashing like a 3-yr-old is still pretty annoying, though.
  3. If neither mom nor I can figure out where that stitch came from, it can't be all that important, right?
  4. It has gotten hot.  While I'm glad that it held off until I was no longer completely miserable, I'm sort-of disappointed that I spent all of the nice weather being miserable.  And I still haven't transplanted our crop of volunteer tomatoes. 
  5. Yogurt is better when cold.
  6. Pasta is surprisingly interesting when it's one of a very small number of things that you have chewed in the past few days.
  7. [livejournal.com profile] vorindi is a marvelous person.  Not that one didn't know that already, but she's fielded an incredible number of these calls in the past few days:
  8. [livejournal.com profile] vorindi: Hello!
    Me: My teeth hurt and sitting up is too much work, but I am not asleep.  Talk to me.
    [livejournal.com profile] vorindi: Okay, um . . . [babble babble babble]

    AND she still manages to sound pleased to hear from me.  She doesn't even like phones.

    7.a. So by whatever version of the Aerodrome Drop-Off Principle that governs my actions, as soon as my mouth gets its feet back under it, I owe someone a heck of a lot of talking.  Feel free to call if you need some.  Although I'll probably manage to pay off a good bit of it if Emily gets her wisdom teeth out in August.

  9. Someday soon I might even stop talking about my wisdom teeth.
3rdragon: (Default)
If you aren't in the Northampton area, you can stop reading now.

But for the rest of you:

Don't leave without saying goodbye!
Also, I'm happy to hang out and help pack. I'm best when you sit me down and give me a box and tell me what to put into it, but I can work on my own initiative, too.

And if you'll be here through graduation, you're invited to the help-carry-Miriam's-stuff-to-the-car party on May 16 after brunch (so maybe 1pm? 1:30? I don't really remember what the timing looks like for that. Just tell me if you're willing and available, and I'll make sure that you don't miss it).
. . . I generally don't pack my boxes too terribly heavy.
3rdragon: (Default)
So I have come to fix that. I present to you:
Miriam's translation of Emily's song about straw hats

(and lj-cut seems to hate me, or possibly the table - sorry for the textglomp)

As a bit of background, the original song is in Italian and can be found here. I don't know any Italian, but I speak Spanish and can understand simple Portuguese phrases, which we decided was an excellent basis from which to try to translate. On the left you have my translation. In the middle you have Emily's translation, and on the right you have notes about the translation.

I don't get much of the first verse

Something elegance, and the sweet transference(?) to greet the sun. And in what circumstance the something of Firenze (and its own neck?) that something something.

What elegant style, what sweet (um... transendence?) to welcome the sun. And in these (environs/situations?) the straw [hat] of florence is truly what is needed / what one wants.

The head of the hat of Firenze, we have so much confidence, and they say that Beatrice comported herself in that instance as if she had encountered her father Dante? And if we(?) are good, the consequence will be that straw hat. of Firenze.

On [the subject of] the straw hat of florence
We can tell you many secrets.
And it is said that Beatrice
Wore one in the instant
That she met father [=father of Italian literature] Dante
And one knows well what the consequences [were]
Of that particolar straw [hat] of Florence.
[ie, Dante fell madly in love and wrote the Divine commedy]

Oh, with the hat on our heads . . . confidence!
pardon me a moment while I keel over laughing
No! You have to wait until I'm finished.
I'm afraid I won't be able to breath by the time you're finished... but do go on

With the hat on our heads, what reminiscences we have. How well it went with Giannetta when he walked (in front of?) the something of Boccaccio, and it gave him (?incentive?) to eat freely toggling his Firenze hat.

About the straw hat of Florence
Oh how many, many reminiscences.
The beautiful Giannetta wore one
When she was going all in a hurry
Into the embrace of Boccaccia
And it [see next line] gave start to comic [licenses? In a vaguely naughty sense?]
Taking off the straw [hat] of Firenze.

I hope Gianetta wasn't eating freely of his hat...
can't be very tasty
pretty, yes. tasty, no.
Gianetta is a woman, by the way

And the Arno passed quietly something bridge, in the sweet enchantment of (the mountain? the foothills?) The road of Calzaioli was right/straight and the spring of the youth.

And the Arno passes
Under the seven bridges
In the sweet delight
Of its sunsets.
And via dei Calzatoli
Towards evening
Is the spring of youth.

. . . we have so many confidences. Oretta wore one when Giotto in (front of?) designed the perfect "o" of which to measure the circumfrence. in the shadow of a Firenze hat.

On the straw hat of Florence
We can tell you many secrets.
Grandfather Oretta wore it
When Giotto in a hurry
Designed the perfect “O”
By mesuring the circumference
Of the shadow of a straw [hat] of Firenze.

the Firenze hat was for Galileo the wellspring of experience (inspiration?). a something wore one in the piazza and didn't something and he said, "and still it moves." He showed in the depts of the scienze was inpired by the Firenze hat.

The straw hat of Florence
For Galileo was a font of experience.
A girl wore it
In the piazza, and I don’t know where,
and he said “and yet it moves”.
Which essentially demonstrates the the sciences
Are inspired by the straw [hat] of firenze

[so far as I can tell, the second half of that line exists soley to rhyme with “muove”]

"eppure si muove"
are the famous words of galileo

the Firenze hat is appropriate attire for all outings. To chat, to love, to get drunk(?)/have Bacchusian revels(?) with impunity (quietly the birth of the people?). One sees the series of secrets finessed with the something of Firenze.

to kiss each other with impunity under the noses of other people.

that may be the best one yet
and accurate, too
or nearly
bacciarsi = to kiss each other
althogh I like the image of people getting drunk in straw hats
3rdragon: (Default)
finished much better than it began.

I wish to say that my math class is made up of really awesome people (Just as an example, Naomi ran home to get medicinal chocolate and practically force-fed it to me. Not content with that, she left some with my stuff at the end of the coaching session), that there are few treatments for feeling miserable that compare with watching a sabre fencer and an epee fencer trying to fence each other while holding foils (I was laughing so hard that I could barely referee), and that both friends and food are good things to have, and better things when both friends and food are good.

About Ghengis:
There are animals that you don't like very much, or that don't like you, that you just sort of coexist with. There are animals that are ridiculous, or giant balls of fluff with legs, or that operate on one brain cell per day, but you love them anyway. And then there are animals that are really truly excellent beings in multiple ways, and if you're lucky enough to be close to such animals, you love them like people. And Ghengis was one of those.
3rdragon: (Default)
I will be arriving at Smith this Sunday, probably between 2:30 and 3:30. I would appreciate help moving in, and will provide food bribessnacks to anyone who helps, as well as carrying boxes for you if you need it. My room this year is in Park Annex (and it's on the second floor, rather than the third!).

In short, I would like to create a roving band of movers armed with yummy foods. Who's with me?

(And yes, I know that many of you won't arrive for a while, but tell me when and I'll help you move in anyway.)
3rdragon: (Default)
I will be in Northampton from tomorrow (Friday) night until Wednesday morning, and amenable to hanging out. If you are in the area and are interested in hanging out, comment, send me an e-mail, call me, talk to [livejournal.com profile] chocochan, or add secret messages on the Amtrak route between Philly and Springfield.

Also, I just finished reading Cyteen. It was excellent.
3rdragon: (Default)
Today I stood in the center of a spinning cloud of bees, a living cyclone that filled the air with its sound and yet hardly moved the air.

Goodbyes are sad times.

I love the way everyone gets silly and cuddly and close during finals, the way we especially value our friends because we know that they are about to leave.
I hate the way that everyone is busy and stressed and worried at the end of the year, how everyone's hackles are but a moment from rising and how a careless, sleep deprived word inspires a growl.
I am glad that classes are over, but look forward to weeks and months ahead with many fewer friends about and silence around me instead of the comforting buzz of the hive.
I miss the challenge of structured academic learning, but revel in the freedom to take an afternoon and do everything and nothing.
I strongly dislike moving. I welcome the chance to lessen the clutter in my life and the quickening of my mother's ThrowItOut impulses, while I despair over the results of my hoarding tendencies - an inheritance from my father.
I watch my friends walk out of my life for months at a time and see the tears roll down their faces. It's not forever. It's not even Spain.
It is, however, long enough.
Tall trees outside my window shake, and the air has changed. Summer brings storms and change as my life is gathered into boxes at my feet while scattered across the country to the four winds.

I really shouldn't have packed up both of my lights; it gets really dark in here without them.
3rdragon: (Default)
(yes, you!)

This Saturday, the 17th, I will be hosting a moving-in party. There will be boxes. I try not to pack them too heavily. There will be food. The food includes yummy homemade cookies. There will be beverages (probably just water, but hey).

Please come. You don't have to carry boxes, though it would be greatly appreciated. Come even if you can't carry boxes. You can carry pillows, or hold doors, or sit on the bed and look smug and tell me how I have to organize my room. Everyone who shows up will get an equal crack at the snacks.
And for those of you who are far away, I'm sorry you can't come.

Where: My new room in Park. And my dad's car, which will hopefully be parked right outside Park. Also at Ziskind, because I have a bunch of stuff in the trunk room there. If you're trying to meet up with us, you can try calling my cell phone or my new extension (neither of which I will post here, but you can get the one by asking people who know me and look the other up in the directory). Or you can just keep track of [livejournal.com profile] tigerlofu, since she's being wonderful and picking up my keys for me, and I won't be able to get in without her.

When: This is more complicated. We're aiming for 4, but there are a zillion reasons that we might not arrive until 5, and who knows, we might even be early for once.

You can RSVP if you want to, perhaps by replying to this post. If you do, I'll call you or something when I arrive. Also, please tell me if you have a nut allergy or anything so that I can make sure that there are snacks you can eat.

It'll be fun?
3rdragon: (Default)
I had a really good week, and I'm feeling happy and chipper and want to babble at people, but it's 5:00 in the morning for just about everyone, so of course none of you are up yet to be babbled at.

I guess I could go babble at [livejournal.com profile] spainsquirrel.
3rdragon: (Default)
No spoilers, but cut in case you don't care )

In terms of what's going on, [livejournal.com profile] estelwen and I had a fun Philadelphia Day yesterday, even if it was a bit walking-heavy (why is museuming more tiring than hiking up and down mountains?). I could have brought the car, but then there's parking to consider, and traffic, and bleh, and quite possibly there would still have been just as much walking.

I need to remember to make sure that the computer is connected to the internet when I try to post this. Mom's internet is broken and does not look like it'll be fixed soon (AT&T India was unhelpful, and when mom threatened to switch internet service providers, the guy told her to go ahead. She's sure that there's someone in that company who cares about her custom, but she doesn't know how to get to them.), so we're borrowing the neighbors' unsecured wireless network (we did ask - eventually), which is sometimes fine but sometimes patchy.

I'm going to go to tea today with my dad's house neighbor Dee. That will be fun.

It's probably time to take the purple bag out. When I retrieved it from dad's house, I discovered that it had acquired clothing moths. Luckily it's already felted, so I had no compunctions about dumping it in hot water for a while.
3rdragon: (Default)
smb and large craft projects )

more dreams )
3rdragon: (Default)
No, to be perfectly frank, I couldn't've. I'm also quite glad that the band called it at 11:00, because while I felt, when we stopped dancing, that I could have danced a little more, I was bone-tired exhausted by the time we finished putting everything away and the band collected all of their stuff and left.

Really, it was a very successful dance.
Considering that there was almost no advertising, either on campus or in the broader Swing community. (We had lovely posters which we mostly only put up within the past three days, and not terribly well at that.)
Considering that the timing was possibly the worst it could have been - Senior Ball was last night, and a thousand theater performances, and a bunch of other things that I don't even remember. On the plus side, I could go, which wouldn't necessarily have been guaranteed by a better-chosen date, given the number of Saturdays this semester that were occupied by fencing tournaments.
Considering that three out of five of the Smith Hooked on Swing Society board members couldn't actually go, and we didn't draw in many of the people who came to our lessons last semester, either.

The band was excellent, and at a guess I'd say that we had 15 people for the first hour or so of the dance, and perhaps 20 attendees overall. One of the advantages of poor advertising and not bringing in many beginners is that there aren't many beginners. While everyone I've met in the Swing Community is really happy to teach people things, and very understanding if you aren't very good yet, it's also really nice to dance with people who are as good as or better than you are. I learned two new moves last night, and saw another that I'll probably be able to figure out with Emily. I was showed several new moves that I don't have a dream of reproducing.
Cmoore and Toby were there, which is always fun, since they're both excellent dancers. I reminded them of several moves they had forgotten they knew, and they reminded me how to do them, which I figure is a pretty good trade-off. I became a lot better in triple-stepping over the course of the night, although I need to get cmoore to tell me what move it is that I can't remember that only works when triple-stepping.

I got to follow! You see, I originally learned to lead, given that someone needed to, and I've done a lot more leading, and so am better at leading than following. I like following, but only if I'm dancing with someone who's better than I am, because a) I'm not a good enough follow to be able to do it if my lead doesn't know what we're doing, and b) the amount of complexity that a couple can do while swing dancing depends on how advanced the leader is, given that s/he is leading, and it's more-or-less impossible to lead a move you don't know.
But cmoore and toby left shortly after 10:00, as did the batch of beginners and several of the couples who had showed up, leaving Emily and I, an intermediate couple (but really only the woman, since the guy's knee had gone unexpectedly wonky and he stopped dancing), and two guys who were quite good. I got to follow with each of them, and was also able to lead both Emily and the other woman, which is a kind of versatility which is really quite excellent, since it meant that I could dance with whoever I wanted to and never had to sit a dance out for lack of a partner I could dance with.

When Em and I were sitting around waiting for the band to finish packing up so we could go home, she expressed a desire to learn how to lead, which is an excellent idea because of the aforementioned versatility, and I suggested that it could be a project for this summer, given that we'll both be here. Height may be an interesting issue which didn't occur to me last night; I tend to forget that Emily only comes up to my shoulder. I think it'll be manageable, though, provided that she's VERY sure to get her hands up high enough. And it's not like it won't be something that she'll have to learn to deal with, given that many of the people she dances with are taller than she is.

Last night we also established that I have NO muscle memory for Lindy Hop. I went to two of the Lindy lessons a month and a half ago, and Zeke and I spent an hour just last week in an intensive review of Lindy, and last night I could do the first half of the basic step and one of the most basic turns. And that was not because my feet remembered; my head remembered and then I could manage to pummel it into my feet. I don't know why I have so much trouble learning Lindy; I never had that much trouble learning East Coast Swing. I didn't even have quite that much trouble learning West Coast Swing, for all that I like Lindy better than West Coast.

So overall, I had fun. And so did Emily. And that's what really matters, right?
Your student activity fee at work, folks; SHOSS hosts a dance and only a few students show up, but Miriam and Emily have lots of fun.
3rdragon: (Default)
So last night after the ECC/SSFFS mobwalk (muskrats! bats! playing in river! acorn-cap whistles!), I was hanging out with [livejournal.com profile] vorindi and doing my homework, and happened to glance at the comments on the bottom of the spanish paper I was revising (read: fixing grammatical errors in) and, surprise surprise, realized that not only was there a comment, but it read, "iExcellente uso de la estructura! Once you correct it, may I make copies for your classmates?" At least, that's what it read after I deciphered it (the handwriting was not the best, and I was expecting it to be in spanish, and was so trying to make it into "eleven j-something archaic-form-of-you-run . . ."

Um. It certainly wasn't the worst essay I've ever written. But I don't feel that it's anything like the best, either. It's a five-paragraph essay in a page and a half. I personally felt that it was sort of mediocre and the thesis was dull, but that was okay because she grades for grammar rather than content.
This class is called Advanced Composition. The fact that a so-so essay I wrote in less than an hour and a half (admittedly over two days, but that's about the amount of time I spent on it) is hailed as an excellent example of the form disturbs me a little bit. I guess I'm glad she liked it, though.

And now, off to Spanish class!
3rdragon: (Default)
My computer. (If you're curious, she came with that name, but I did name the second hard drive Mandy.)

Let me give you a bit of background.

Yesterday after being driven out of my room I came to the CMP and did productive things on the fencing website (it's almost done, yay), then went to lunch, and then regrouped for a knitting circle in the early afternoon. At some point in the late afternoon the knitting circle turned into a knitting-and-Dr. Who-circle and migrated to my room because my bed is more comfy than the kitchenette, and we watched some 4th Doctor. After a while we went to dinner at India House (yum!), and then came back, watched more 4th Doctor, took a break for 9th Doctor because Madison said that the rest of them needed to see Captain Jack Harkness, and then finished the 4th Doctor stuff we'd been watching. I finished another hat (almost a whole hat in one day!). People migrated back to their respective rooms and [livejournal.com profile] chocochan and I did some swing dancing. All in all, a lovely day.

I got back to my room and turned my computer on. I almost immediately changed my mind and decided that I could check e-mail in the morning, so rather than waiting for it to turn on and then turning it off again, I hit restart and turned it off when the screen went back. Yes, I know that this is not good for the computer. However, I'd been under the impression that this was a sort of minor not-good-for-the-computer thing, like unplugging a flash drive without properly disconnecting it, rather than a BAD THING that will do terrible things to your computer.

I appear to have been wrong about that. Because now it won't turn on. Or rather, it does, but it won't get past startup. I turn it on, and get the computer-turning-on noise, and the screen goes white-with-the-gray-apple, and the circle underneath spins - and then it stops spinning and I get a message, "You need to restart your computer. You can do this by pressing the restart button or holding down the power button for several seconds," in four different languages. And if I restart it, exactly the same thing happens. (although holding down the power button doesn't seem to do anything at all.)
Two hours of trawling through help websites (in the Campus Center and on Ingrid's computer, bless her), being on hold with Mac support, and crawling around under my computer desk have resulted in:

-resetting the NVRAM and PRAM (holding Command+Option+p+r through startup) has done something, because the screen resolution is different and startup now seems to be operating from an older graphics package, but hasn't changed the error message (although it's now white letters on black rather than black letters on gray)
-holding x during startup after resetting NVRAM and PRAM doesn't change the error message.
-mac support is going to charge me $50 for phone support. I don't think that this is a $50 problem (I hope it's not a $50 problem). If it is a $50 problem, I don't think that it's going to be resolved over the phone.
-I have posted a query on user discussions at Apple - Support, but I'm doubtful whether that's going to produce results.
-I am hungry and it's lunchtime.

Other things that have happened:
-I've discovered how annoying it is to try to troubleshoot online when your computer won't turn on.
-I detected a definite tinge of annoyance in the computer sorter on the apple support page (Well, I'm sorry, but I didn't buy this computer and I don't know off the top of my head what exactly it is, and it won't turn on so I can't get it to tell me, and if I'm going to look on the back of the tower I have to find the correct bit of little text, and if the back of the tower says Power Macintosh G3 but I know that it runs G4, do I tell it G3 or G4? And that computerized voice is pretty impatient).

If any of you have superpowers of fixing Bad Things with computers, that would be nice.
3rdragon: (Default)
So I got home from fencing tonight (a very good practice, and the ending at 9:00 was nice), and Andria and Cait were hanging out in the hall near my door. They accosted me and started telling me the things they liked about me as a person, and then apologized generally for being jerks, which they seem to think that they are most of the time. This including mention of the fact that we don't hang out very much but they like me a lot anyway, although Andria thinks that many of the things she does might scare me (really, Andria. I hang out with SSFFS and the fencing team. I don't scare as easily as I look. But that's a discussion for another day.). Now, if you don't know Andria and Cait, I must say that they are not very high on my list of people who I expect to walk up to me and have a Serious Talk about all the things that they think make me a good person. But hey, I'll take compliments from unexpected sources.

And today at lunch, I don't remember how, I got on the topic of Appreciations. This is a tradition that we had in the school I went to for 7th and 8th grade; the entire school (k-8) would have an assembly at the end of each year where people would just stand up and say things that they appreciated about other people. And yes, it was Really Boring. The junior highers in particular tended to complain about how deadly it was. But I never did, much as it bored me, because even at 14, I realized how unique an assembly that was, and what it said about the community that created it. So I really tried to appreciate Appreciations. Yes, even the Jane's groupers (k and 1st) when Maddy stood up to say that yesterday Lena shared her apple pieces with her at lunch and she (Maddy) really appreciated it, which happened an awful lot.

So as I took my shower, I was thinking about how uncommon it for people to tell people what they like about each other, what they appreciate. And I think that people would be a lot happier if this happened slightly more frequently. Read more... )

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