Monday, May 30, 2011


As y'all know, my online pseudonym is Kalliope. As an undergrad, I double majored in Technical Theatre and Classical Languages, emphasizing in Ancient Greek literature. So, for this landmark post (100th), I thought I'd explain my pseudonym. Kalliope was the muse of epic poetry and her name means 'beautiful-voiced'. She is known for being Homer's muse, and the inspiration for the Iliad and the Odyssey. In the opening lines of the Iliad and the Odyssey, he calls upon her to sing the stories to him about Achilles' anger and Odysseus' travels. In my classes, I translated a couple of books of the Iliad, read the Odyssey a few times, and wrote my undergraduate thesis about certain events in the Iliad. I love both books. I love the genre. I have read the Aeneid as well, and though I recognize that it is also well done, in my heart I am and always will be a Hellenist. Virgil was a talented epic poet, but I find the introduction boastful. Homer gives the glory of his tales to Kalliope herself, but Virgil begins his poem with the line "I sing about arms and a man" and doesn't invoke the muse until several lines later. Pompous. Too pompous. It's also a challenge to Homer, in that the Iliad is a poem about a war (arms) and the Odyssey is about a man. Virgil declares that he will do what Homer did in one epic, and with the muse taking only a peripheral role.

I don't think so. Sorry. That's probably far more than you wanted to know.

So, in honor of the great muse, and in honor of my first passion, I took upon myself her name.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Guess what I found?

I've been toying around with family history stuff lately. Mostly, it's an insane mess, and somehow I ended up with most or all of the family's records. In triplicate. With different information on each copy. Grrr. So, there's a lot to do.

I logged on to the Family Search website yesterday, which I've been trying to do for weeks, and for some reason, it actually worked. I spent some time piecing together my family tree, and in so doing, found the contact information for someone else who has been working on the same family line. Huh, says I. See, the website makes a note each time someone changes or adds information. So, I clicked on the name of the person in question and found an email address for a girl at the University of Arizona, who had made some edits to my great-grandmother Martha. Turns out, we're related. She's from Arizona, about an hour from where I lived in Tucson. And there's a family reunion in Colorado this summer. Wicked. :)

Saturday, May 21, 2011

I was not translated. Sad.

Well, it's after 6pm on May 21, 2011 and I have not been taken up with the righteous. No surprise there, let's admit it. ;)

Well, last weekend I went up to Boise with Xan and spent some quality time with my pseudo-family. ::aside:: I once walked into a conversation about whether something should be deemed pseudo or quasi. I, extreme nerd that I am, informed them that the words mean entirely the same thing, and that one is derived from Latin and the other from Greek. It's amazing how people don't appreciate it when I try to help them not sound stupid. Hmmm. Anyways, being a Hellenist, my preferences tends towards pseudo. So on Saturday Xan's parents drove us out to Idaho Falls. Interestingly, we were not there to see Idaho Falls, but rather Shoshone Falls. They were beautiful. After the falls, we went to a sushi lunch, which was super yummy, and then we went to another place called the Devil's Washbowl.

This is Shoshone Falls. :)

On Sunday, all of the ladies in the family went to see WICKED!!! And it was totally awesome. Not like hotdogs. It was fabulous. I will admit, during Defying Gravity, I teared up. It was beautiful and emotional and I loved it. Basically, I love musicals. Unabashedly.

The week was pretty boring. I edited sound files and tried to learn praat. I mostly failed, but I'm still trying. Today I took part in the 5k mentioned previously. I didn't have a great showing, but it wasn't terrible and also wasn't totally my fault. About 1/2 mile from the end, I fell, spectacularly. I have a skinned leg, two skinned palms, and a sore forearm. Oh well. The worst bit was that when I fell, I was about 10 feet past a group of guy spectators. Did anyone offer to help me up or ask if I was okay? Nope. It's no wonder I'm unmarried. I'm just saying. Anyways, I was 5th in my division! :) Not high enough for a medal, but maybe next time. I was thinking that next year I'd try for the full triathlon. What do you think? It's a women-only event, and everyone yells supportive things to each other as they go. It's pretty cool. AND, there was a local chiropractor there giving free adjustments. He could tell that I spend my days hunched at a computer. I also got a coupon for 3 free yoga classes. AND the race shirt was a tech shirt! And I got a necklace that says "runner." Sweet. Awesome swag at this event.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Up next. :)

My next 5k is Bank of American Fork Women of Steel Triathlon and 5k. Clearly, I am only doing the 5k portion. I don't own a bicycle, let alone a road/racing bike, and I couldn't tell you the last time I went swimming. Probably 4 years ago. Seriously. Anyways, according to the race website, over 1000 women will be participating in the event. I hope it goes in waves, as I'm not great with crowds. But I have Xanax in case of any issues. Although, I'm not sure I'd like to try to run a race while on Xanax. Hmmmm. Could be fun, but I probably wouldn't do all that well.
Meh. We'll see how it goes.

I had a great run this morning. Well, most of it was great. I ran 4.25 miles, and I'll be the first to tell you that for the last 1/2 mile, I was definitely sluggish and sad. Still, for most of it I was feeling good. The program I'm using tracks my total mileage, duration, etc, and it's so nice to see those number steadily ticking upwards.

My dear college friend, Chris, crashed at my place Saturday night on her way back to college. Her Cali roommate, Dacia, was also here, as she's helping Chris make the long drive to the east coast. They got here pretty late, so I heated up some homemade (and delicious) French onion soup and packed them off to bed. We visited in the morning, Chris tactfully asked me if there was any coffee in the house, and then they were on their way by 11am, off to their next stop. It was good to see her. It's been 8 years, which kinda blows my mind. I made the point that we don't really look older. At least not THAT much older. I pulled out an old picture of myself from freshman year, 10 whole years ago. The only differences I can really discern are the obvious: I had really, really long hair. There is no visible grey in said hair. It looks darker, but that could be the lighting, or it could be that all of the white hair I have now is having the effect of making my hair in general appear to be lighter in colour. Not sure. Also, I am somewhat slimmer.

In the picture, I am reading one of the first books that utterly changed my life. It must have been Winter (Spring) semester, as I know I bought this book for SOAN 101: Human Societies (I think). The book is Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond. A decade later, it still tops my list of most influential books I've read in my lifetime. I even checked out the book on CD from the BYU library, just so I could rip it to my computer and listen to it whenever I wanted! I still reference the book in conversations, and if you haven't read it, I'm telling you that you should. I believe that I have excellent taste in books (always disregarding my affinity for Austen fan fiction, but everyone needs some escapist garbage, right? Alright, I admit it. I also love Napoleonic-era historical fiction. ::shame::) So other than those topics which shall remain nameless, I read mostly nonfiction and I love it. Other authors I highly recommend are Bill Bryson (travel books and English-language books) and A.J. Jacobs (social-experiment-hijinks).

Alrighty, I am now done with my post-run breakfast of whole wheat bagel thin with natural peanut butter, banana, 1/2C chocolate milk, 1C white milk, and a mug of warm tea. I am ready to commence with productivity. And the drinking of more fluids, as I am pretty dehydrated from my run. Also, one of my favorite things about running? A legitimate excuse to purchase and consume chocolate milk. :)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

It's been awhile...

Hey Y'all!
-Still running. In fact, I just got back from a smooth and fabulous 3.5 miles. :) I have been running for 4 whole months and I LOVE IT! This morning was my longest run to date, and it even included a hill. Now that I've been finished with C25k, I went looking for another training program. I found a beginner's 10k 9-week plan on They email me my workout 4 days a week, then I log it when I'm done. It keeps track of happy things like total time, total miles, and total calories. Yay!
-One of my college besties is coming into town this weekend. :D For personal reasons, she ended up not completing her senior year. But now, 8 years later, she has re-applied, been re-accepted, and is going back to finish school! I am so happy and proud of her! She's been living in California since 2003 (which was the last time I saw her), and is embarking on a cross-country trek to get back to school in Virginia. Guess where she's crashing one night? MY HOUSE!!! Yay!
-Much of my family is getting together in DC next weekend. I was supposed to go, but alas, circumstances and thesis made the trip impractical. Boo. However, while they're together, we're going to skype! I will see my beautiful nephew for the first time in almost 2.5 years! Yay!
-I am on a thesis roll! I love working with my informant and I had a great meeting with my advisor on Tuesday. He's excited about my research! Yay! He also wants me to learn and utilize praat for analyzing my data. Boo and Yay. Boo, because that will mean there's no way I'm gonna make August graduation. But... my thesis will be WAY stronger with praat backing me up. Yay!
-I found out from census records yesterday that my great-great-grandmother was a milliner. How cool is that? It certainly explains our family obsession with hats. :)
-I have the house to myself all week. Don't come over. I might be enjoying nakey time. ;) Yay!
-I was put on a different medication, and I'm (mostly) remembering to take it! Yay!
-I'm going to see WICKED! Next weekend! With my fake family! Yay!
-My AMAZING sister MB got me a KitcheAid Stand Mixer for my 29th birthday! And it's in green apple, so it matches my whole life! Yay!
-My OTHER AMAZING sister, CA, got me a totally sweet silicon baking sheet! It's awesome!
-My AMAZING mother got me mexican vanilla and high-fat cocoa!
-My Totally Awesome friends, who shall be called Beckseph, got me a new knife set! Do I sense a theme emerging??? Yay!
-My roommate/sister-from-another-mister and her bf threw me an awesome bday party with cake that I actually liked! Yay!
-I found statements about my thesis topics that are totally wrong and I can eloquently refute them in my long-ass paper! Yay! I LOVE being right!

I think that's enough of that for now. Sorry! It's been a good month, I guess. :) Yay!