Wednesday, October 31, 2012


No, I did not dress up in a costume today, and I certainly didn't go trick-or-treating. Now, if I had a hobbit costume, I might have done the dressing-up part. As for trick-or-treating, I find it much simpler to go buy what I want.

HOWEVER, I did see some interesting costumes today on campus, beginning with the green-haired fairy from Fairly Odd Parents (I do not know the name). I also saw a witch, Ronald Weasley, a girl who may have been Alice in Wonderland (or Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz, who knows?), Cindy-Lou-Who, and another girl in Christmas attire. I heard a few other girls were going around as 'sorority girls'; not sure how they managed that but it mustn't have been too hard.

Another reason why I did not join a sorority: I heard that the Zeta Tau Alphas went around painting their letters (and those of Sigma Chi, for whatever reason) on people's cars. Apparently, the police showed up and would have charged them with vandalism if they didn't start cleaning it up. The sorority was tired of it by then, so they made Sigma Chi clean it up. At least, so went the gossip in computer class Tuesday.

The best costume of all today was undoubtedly the Willy Wonka and the four nigh-identical Oompa-Loompas going around with him (Wonka's little green-haired minions are called the Oompa-Loompas, right? Or is that the candy?). Their costumes were first-class. Wonka's was especially nice, with the hat, the purple coat, and the cane- the whole nine yards. I just managed to catch a glimpse of them as I headed for the shuttle- they were strolling by in front of Bibb Graves as if they owned the place.

I heard they were a sensation on Twitter. Wouldn't know myself, as I am not on Twitter. Wish I had thought to take a picture, though... Sigh.

In Pace Christi,


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Yay! New Book!

As you may surmise, a new book came out today. Of course, I had to go to Books-a-Million and get it. The people there should know me by now; I'm always there the Tuesday anything I want comes out.

Well, today Brotherband Chronicles 3: The Hunters came out today, and I've just finishd it. It was, as expected, amazing. John Flanagan is a genius. His writing continues to become better and better with each book; it is simply a pleasure to read his books. The characters' interactions are natural and hilarious; historical details are well-researched and realistic. Action sequences are plenty and flow well. As for suspense... what can I say? Ranger's Apprentice 9 was, to put it mildly, nerve-wracking, and I rarely get that feeling when I read.

My favorite character from the Brotherband Chronicles? Hmm... I like Stig. He is the perfect combination with Thorn in a fight. Watching him single-handedly attack eight men was priceless. Even if his dad failed at becoming the Maktig (the greatest warrior in Skandia, chosen at a special competition each year), Stig should get it in the future. He's got the potential to be another Thorn, I think. Edvin might be the "unrealized potential asset" of the story, but Stig is always running around in the background, making sure things run well for Hal and the others.

Plus, Stig somehow manages to be in a lot of the funny moments. For instance, I'll share with you the funniest line of the book, and urge you to go buy a copy for yourself:

"You know, I've been thinking..." Stig began slowly.

Hal called to Edvin, who was sesated amidships. "Edvin. Note the time and the date, please. A unique event has just occurred."

"Very funny," Stig said.

Edvin glanced up briefly from his knitting and shook his head.

And, yes, Edvin's knitting is sort of a running gag throughout the book. XD

In Pace Christi,


Monday, October 29, 2012

Who knows but life be that which men call death, and death that what men call life?
– Euripides

Honors Form Post, 10/29/12

I have had the hardest time today not writing down the date as the 30th. I am not sure why that is so, other than that I have a book coming out tomorrow. And, I assure you, I shall go buy it tomorrow. Three cheers for John Flanagan, Ranger's Apprentice, and the Brotherband Chronicles!!


Tonight's speaker was Bradley Dean, 'Creative Director' at Billy Reid's. He began with explaining that it is very hard to define his job description, as he wears so many hats. I think it could be summed up with: guy that comes up with crazy awesome ideas that work. Apparently, burning down a small forest counts as a crazy awesome idea, and who am I to argue with such crazy awesomeness?

They also grow organic cotton. That is points in my book any day. He spoke of sustainability, and entirely rethinking the way cotton is grown, harvested, and processed into a finished garment. He spoke of long-term goals, such as possibly reintroducing clothing manufacturing back to the shoals (Tee-Jay's, anyone? That rang bells with me, at least). I can understand that very much.

What I discerned of his talk was that he was led to civic engagement, and participated in it, through both his work and his home and town. When he 'destroyed' his house downtown in order to renovate it, he was surprised that no one asked him what he was doing. He admitted he rather liked that (I am not sure what a libertarian means. I should look up libertarianism. I do not think it is the same thing as distributism, which I adhere to. Distributism is similar in that it is in favor of small government, however) but wanted to ensure that houses on his street had a certain quality. Including putting trash cans away. That prompted a small amount of admitting we were making him feel old, which was amusing. I cannot say much to that however as I was no older than 15 or 16 and talking about 'kids these days' with a couple of friends of mine, however.

And anyone who wants to preserve old things and foster small town growth and hates the tackiness of Wal-Marts (IS ANYONE ELSE SERIOUSLY IRKED AT THE WAL-MART GOING IN NEXT TO THE DARBY DRIVE PARKING LOT????) and parking lots and strip malls is fine in my books.

I really liked Mr. Dean's message. I liked how he admitted that he learned from his elders and continued to educated himself after graduating from college. I believe that a lot of wisdom can be learned from one's elders. I am not a chronological snob, to borrow G. K. Chesterton's words: I do not believe merely that because someone is older than me that they have nothing of importance to say to me. In fact, I think our society should accord a lot more respect to old people. Youth is great and everything- but it really is wasted on the young. Age should be given its credit- it's learned the lessons we're still taking.

I also liked that Mr. Dean predicted that people would shift back to smaller towns with vibrant downtowns rather than the urban sprawl with Wal-Marts and heavy traffic and long commutes. I really do like that. I also think he's right. There's only so much not-big-city not-little-town horrible cookie-cutter subdivisions a soul can take before it rebels and must go either way. (As you may infer, I am of the opinion that subdivisions are horrible. This is because I have seen far, far too much good farmland- and good farmland, properly cultivated, is a beautiful site- sold to land developers by children who didn't want to carry on the family farm and which is then carved up piecemeal and made into subdivisions. Subdivisions can be done right. Older ones with large trees and unique houses are quite nice. But the new ones only have like 4 floor plans and 1 style of brick and 1 color siding and 1 color roof and regulation mailboxes and shrubbery and tacky little anemic crepe myrtles instead of trees. And they are hideous. There is no excuse for them. They are little pits of Gehenna.)

Oh, and that, my friends, was a bit of semi-comic hyperbole. See, I know my rhetoric terms.

Back to the forum tonight, after my mini-rant about urban sprawl and the horrors thereof, Mr. Dean brought up something I have mentioned before on this blog when he showed us a video on YouTube entitled: "First Follower: Leadership Lessons from the Dancing Guy." In short, the message went like this: The first follower transforms a lone nut into a leader. The second follower turns two nuts into a movement."

Another thing I liked that Mr. Dean mentioned was something he alluded to briefly at the end: some limitations are good. Yes, I believe that kids should tell their parents where they're going and when'll they'll be home (to quote a song called 'Things Like That These Days'). And when they prove they can handle responsibility and behave themselves, the limitations can be relaxed somewhat.

But there are some limitations that should never be removed, because they are written in the natural law and in our very hearts and souls. Some people call the core of them the Ten Commandments.

In Pace Christi,


Actually A Great Monday

Today, as you may surmise from this post's title, was not a bad Monday, as Mondays usually are. In fact, it was a great Monday. Most of the reason why today was a great Monday was the fact that geography today was AWESOME.

Put it this way: how awesome is it when your geography professor, at the end of class, mentions that he's going to tell us one more story, and proceeds to relate how he once got arrested by the Soviet police? AWESOME.

Dr. Mikey rocks!

The lecture up to that point had not been dull at all, let me assure you. Today was our third day of covering Russia, and we were learning about the rise and fall of the USSR. Did you know that Lenin was not his original name? Or that Stalin wasn't his original name, either, for that matter? Stalin wasn't even actually Russian. He was from Georgia- no, not that Georgia, not the one next door with the Bulldogs but the one way over in Asia. South of present-day Russia. Yes, Stalin was born there. LOL.

Actually, I think I have read not-so-secret conspiracy theories that Stalin had Lenin murdered, and then calmly served as one of his pallbearers. For some twisted unknown reason, I find that amusing. Dr. Mikey told us how Lenin's body was embalmed and put on display in monument-like tomb of what appeared to be red sandstone (he had pictures) on the Red Square in Moscow. No pictures of dead Lenin, sadly, but I have seen one before, in which he appeared to be rising Frankenstein-like or Dracula-like out of the darkness. Majorly creepy. Anyway, they have to take Lenin out of his air-free glass case every few years and inject more embalming fluid. Yay for nasty details, Dr. Mikey! I also loved the fact that you showed us pictures of reindeer being butchered in Finnland, and I am not at all sarcastic about this.

Dr. Mikey also related, in all its quirky gory glory, about how Leon Trotsky, to escape Stalin, fled to Mexico Of All Places, where he thought he was safe. He was not. He was hunted down by Stalin's agents and his skull was bashed in with an ice pick. An ice pick. Seriously, where do you get an ice pick in Mexico? Russia I can understand, since it is freezing up there. But Mexico...? I sense another conspiracy theory here...

The highlight of the day, however, was unquestionably the story of how Dr. Mikey got arrested in Murmansk (or a town named something along those lines). In those days, to go to the USSR one had to have a visa (he showed us a picture of his), and it was stamped with the names of the towns one could go to. He was there with some Finns and they and their Russian hosts decided to go to some other Russian town for lunch. Surprise, suprise, when they found their little Finnish car surrounded by Soviet police. That had to have been quite frightening in real life, but Dr. Mikey made an amusing story out of it as he related how they spent the next three hours in a courtroom with their Russian hosts arguing with the officials and being guarded by soldiers with AK-47's (or whatever the Russian equivalent of AK-47's are) as if they were a dangerous group of people. After a telephone call to Moscow, they were released. Even so... What a story.

On that excursion, he took pictures of environmental damage due to the Communist environmental policies, or lack thereof, rather. It looked like Mordor with more dead grass. And smog. Mordor with lots of dead grass, mud, and smog. Not at all a pretty site. They were the people who triggered Chernobyl, remember, because they didn't want to let the reactor shut down properly and risk their superintendent's displeasure because that cut off power to Kiev. So they started it back up again before it had shut down properly and... yeah. Bad things happened.

See? I know a little bit of everything.

I take back everything I said at the beginning of this semester about geography being my new nap time. It is now obvious that Dr. Mikey was just having to go over maps for the benefit of the people who are only there for the gen ed requirement (okay, so that's why I'm there, too, but I want to learn it) and that the rest of the class will be great.

Sure hope so. Today became a great Monday, all thanks to you, Dr. Mikey.

In Pace Christi,


Monday, October 22, 2012

It’s a mistake to treat intelligence and piety as if they were somehow mutually exclusive terms. The best thing we can do is to offer our devotions with understanding.
 – Scott Hahn

Honors Post, 10/22/12

So, apparently, the buttons I see around campus ARE supposed to say, 'GO GEEK!' Yes, I asked someone about it. However, no one could give me an explanation as to why the buttons use Greek sigmas for the e's. I suppose I am just too geeky for the buttons...

On a similar note, I HAVE STARTED A PETITION FOR LATIN CLASSES HERE AT UNA. I do not know how far this project of mine shall go, but I shall make a semi-valiant effort. If any of you honors people want to sign (if any of you honors people read my blog), just catch me before forum some time. I'm usually there ten minutes in advance, because I really want to get a parking spot.

Tonight's speaker at forum was Leslie Tomlinson from the Association of Junior League Internation, Inc. I had never heard of AJLI before, so I was clueless (as I can be) for quite some time. Apparently, some people think of it as a sorority group for grown-ups, which... despite her many protests to the contrary... it seems like it was even up to very recent times. Snobby high-society ladies, it seems. Which I really don't get.

Coming from a rich religious background of the Catholic Church (of which I am not ashamed: go get your tomatoes and flaming torches and fling them at me for all I care; spam my comment box with flames and I shall gleefully delete them all), my first thought when it comes to volunteering is something to do with the Church. In the past, so many orders of sisters and laity have been formed to do stuff for the poor, and have been doing so for centuries. I can't tell you HOW many orders of nuns there are and most of them have to do with helping the helpless- education and all that good stuff. Seriously. Nearly every lady saint started a new congregation of nuns. Or reformed one. Or something like that. It gets so that it's hard to find a female saint who was not a nun, unless it was an early martyr, in which case they were the ancient Roman equivalent of a nun. St. Frances of Rome is the only exception I can think of off the bat.

Anyway, the AJLI's mission is promoting volunteerism, developing the potential of women (whatever that means) and improving communities. They have also recently started to address the needs of their volunteers in an effort to attract new membership and keep what membership they have, by addressing critical community needs, meeting women where they are as it relates to volunteer opportunities (whatever that means, again), and providing networking and social opportunities.

I'll be honest. The word 'networking' doesn't sit well for me. It doesn't help that the image that comes to mind whenever I hear it is of Shelob or some other nasty spider sitting in the middle of a web, pulling this and that thread to ensnare juicy morsels to eat. (Shelob is horrifying. I can't watch those parts of The Return of the King, and I'm not afraid of spiders. I'm just like, "Oh, a spider," and squish it. I actually had a spider fall off the ceiling on me once and didn't even make a sound. I just slapped it. I've even been moving boxes with my church's youth group and a spider fell out. The guys all just stood around and looked at it. I squished it for them. Men.)

However, 'networking' is a popular term. Oh, and 'leadership'. They love the word, 'leadership'. It's a magic word. They all nod in sync whenever it's brought up. I've never gotten the obsession with leadership. What happens when there are too many leaders and not enough followers?

Mrs. Tomlinson did have a good piece of advice, though: Be suspicious of any group you cannot simply ask to join, but who must ask you.

I also have to thank her for a new adjective, 'Switzerland-esque', as a synonym for neutral. I shall have to use that sometime.

One thing I didn't get, though: we can't join until we're 24. So... why are we being talked to now about it? I really wonder how many people are going to remember AJLI four years or so in the future. Of course, I may be entirely wrong here. All the go-getters in the Honors Program may be marking their calenders since they love service opportunities and involvement and all that good stuff.

Ich bin eine Leseratte.

Oh, and, yes, PLEASE, bring an engineering school to UNA! I don't care that it would even out the 4:1 girl:guy ratio here at UNA. It would mean that I don't have to go to UAH or Auburn to get a chemical engineering degree! I rather like it here... But I'd also prefer chemical engineering over just a plain chemistry degree...

Chem engineering and Latin. Do that, UNA, and I'll be very happy. I might forgive you all your little idiosyncrasies for that.

In Pace Christi,


Monday, October 15, 2012

Honors Post, 10/15/12

Tonight's speaker was Jackie Hendrix, the owner of Party Pros and the President of the Shoals Chamber of Commerce. He is also a UNA graduate. He admittedly came to us tonight with the goal of not being our worst speaker, and I can say that he certainly achieved that goal.

His speech seemed geared towards getting us out and involved in the community, in order to make us part of the 20% of people that end up doing 80% of the work. (I don't think I've heard of that principle before, but it sounds familiar. It is also quite true. The last year I was with my church's high school youth group, there were always five of us- the same five- who showed up to work at any given function. Of course, the rest of the group always wanted to go on the summer trips anyway...)

Mr. Hendrix also told us to be on the lookout for win-win situations. We should not take from an organization and not give back, of course, but if there is a way for us to receive in some manner as well as give, all to the good. He also warned us that sometimes the reward may not be monetary or tangible; sometimes it may be no more than the good feeling of helping somebody.

He also told us that, when we get involved, to get involved early. He mentioned the importance of remembering people's names- an importance I certainly recognize. I have a terrible time picking up people's identities by osmosis. After some family get-together my mom and my sister will be discussing all the extended-extended family members who were there- cousins of cousins, and that sort of thing-, and I'm still going, "Who?" I have to see a face and connect it with a name to remember it. I admit, I know most of the people in the Honors Program from hearing teachers call roll. I know a few more names from hanging around in Lafayette and watching the entertainment that somehow produces itself in the lobby, but I'm still not great. Also, it may take me a moment or two once I see you and you say hi to me for the gears to click in my mind and dredge up your name. The blank look will usually clear away; don't panic. And even if I can't recall your name, I probably know that you're in a class of mine. Probably. Maybe.

Mr. Hendrix further advised us not to graduate without taking art and music appreciation classes. Does the fact that I have taken 13 years of piano excuse me from taking music appreciation? I like classical music just fine. In fact, this morning I copied some CD's of classical music we had lying around the house onto my laptop so I could listen to Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus" without having to traipse down to the basement and rummage around for the CD. Even the prospect of a free easy class isn't going to lure me. I cannot imagine how hard it must be for the faculty who teach these classes, knowing that about 95% of their students are there just because it's required and because it is supposed to be an 'easy' class. It'd be hard to be energetic with a student body like that, I think. Of course, there's probably the random few that sincerely want to learn more about music. But they are likely few and far in between...

As for art appreciation... Based on my track record with modern art, I just don't think that would go over too well. I just don't. Please pardon me, Mr. Hendrix. I mean well. I want to save the teacher the headache of trying to grade papers wherein I have outlined my philosophical disagreements with the world of modern art. After all, I was the person who emerged from the Chattanooga Museum of Art and scuttled back to the bus to scribble down a paragraph or two outlining my own definition of freedom as viewed as a Platonic Ideal.

That brings it to mind... I think I really shall start a petition to have a Latin class here at UNA. Enough people will sign it, I think.

In Pace Christi,


PS. This is my 180th post. My blog is the blog to rule them all.
A vote for a candidate who promotes actions or behaviors that are intrinsically evil and gravely sinful makes you morally complicit and places the eternal salvation of your own soul in serious jeapordy.

- Bishop Thomas Paprocki of Springfield, Illinois


"Argh" sort of sums up my feelings at this point. Let me repeat for emphasis: Argh.

There. I feel a little better.

Spring schedules came out today (and you may surmise, correctly, that they are responsible for 80% of the argh). I HAVE ACTUALLY ALREADY FIGURED OUT EVERY SINGLE CLASS I WANT TO TAKE IN THE SPRING!

Beat that!

I have also more or less decided to change my major. I am thinking at the moment that I will stay here at UNA and get a general chemistry degree with a German minor, and then see about transferring to get a chemical engineering degree. This necessitates taking Calculus 3 in the spring, which will be annoying as I will have skipped a semester (or two, if you count summer) in between it and Cal 2. Not fun.

I suppose I'll also go on to take history in the spring. BUT DR. BIBBEE ISN'T TEACHING IT! ARGH! I really wanted Dr. Bibbee to be teaching it since he was funny and I am willing to follow funny teachers through all my courses...

The other large factor for the argh is speech homework, which I really do not want to do. I also need to study two chapters of the speech handbook. Really do not want to do it... I just really don't...

I really need some good news at the moment. Well, I have finished all my hours in the language lab. Even if I was gypped out of 4 hours and I had to spent the majority of Friday in there in the freezing cold. But now I do not have to set foot in there again until the spring. So that is very good.

But I am still feeling very argh. Yes, I know that is not a proper adjective. But at this point I really don't care.

In Pace Christi,


Monday, October 8, 2012

Giving is more than money but it is never less than money.

You may not live what you profess but you will undoubtedly live what you believe.

- Dr. Lane, Honors Forum 10/8/12

Honors Forum, 10/8/12

I think the purpose of us all having our honors blogs on Blogger was so we could comment on each others' blogs. Well, this is not happening. I'm not sure we're even reading each other's blogs. I glance at other people's occasionally. (I mostly note the lack of posts, to tell the truth. Get with the program, peeps!) Once, I commented on someone else's blog. Then I felt like a creepy stalker and wanted to apologize to them in person. Then I considered that that would be even MORE of creepy stalkerish behavior, and I have no wish to be a creepy stalker. So I have settled for figuratively crawling away under the table and hoping that imprudent comment never, ever, comes to light again.

Anyhoo, tonight's speaker was a Dr. John Lane, a periordontist. I have no idea if I've spelled that correctly. It deals with the foundations of teeth and presumably the gums, at any rate.

So he spoke to us tonight about civic engagement, defining it and listing ways in which one can demonstrate civic responsibility. Some were: voting (I vote), jury duty, and volunteering.

The very small number of students (and honors students, at that!) who responded when Dr. Lane asked for a show of hands of people who voted was saddening. Ever since I was old enough and registered to vote, I have voted in every single election, no matter how seemingly insignificant. Does my vote seem to count for much? Not always. Will the fact that I have voted and the ramifications thereof have an impact on my life and eternal destination? Most definitely.

Jury duty? Now that is something I have never been called up for, obviously...

Volunteering. Ah, volunteering, thou who art so encouraged by speakers to young people everywhere. Really, now, is there anything I can say that will make other honors students more aware of the need for volunteering? I think I'm preaching to the choir here.

Dr. Lane stated that his research with Google led him to the discovering that the concept of civic responsibility orginated in Rome. He then made the incongruous statement that Roman citizens helped keep the Roman Empire alive by fulfilling their duty to democracy and all that and that is where he lost me. I am a proud nerd. I also know that people have a really weird obsession with the word, 'democracy'. The Roman Empire was decidedly not a democracy. You'd think the word 'empire' would clue people in but, apparently, not. Rome actually started off as a kingdom (Romulus, one of the twins who was dumped into the Tiber. Ring any bells?), before the Romans eventually kicked out the king and formed a republic. The republic was formed into an empire by Caesar Augustus. It was not a democracy. Nor are we a democracy, either. The USA is a democratic republic. Democracy is mob rule, and we certainly don't want that here.

However, Dr. Lane did gain points in my books for quoting the preamble of the Constitution and referring to it again later on. I would like to submit that another quality of civic duty should be to read the Constitution and know how our government works (or does not work, as the case may be).

Dr. Lane also gained points when he brought up Dave Ramsey, since I think Dave Ramsey has a wonderful money philosophy and also a general wonderful life philosophy.

Perhaps Dr. Lane's talk could be summed up as, "Give back." It sounds trite compressed into two words like that, but it is the kernel of it.

He also had two great quotes. I love quotes and collect them. Those of you, if any, who read my blog will know this, as I tend to post a quote along with my longer posts. So his quotes shall be posted right after this!

In Pace Christi,


Monday, October 1, 2012

If you honestly consult your own heart you will find that there is one and only one reason why you are not now a saint: because you do not wholly want to be one.
– William Law

On a completely unrelated note, The Mark of Athena comes out tomorrow! Squee! Also, there are only 74 days until The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey comes out!

In Pace Christi,


Obligatory Honors Post, 10/1/12


*deep breath* Okay, now that I have that bit of melodrama out of my system...

Our speaker tonight was Gina Mashburn from Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Shoals. Big Brothers Big Sisters is a program that takes volunteers and matches them up based on their likes, hobbies, etc., with a younger, at-risk child that they will then mentor. Some of the mentoring programs take place at schools, mostly across the river (does Red Bay count as across the river? Hmm... I guess it does...), while others are simply called community programs and involve the mentor picking up the child and doing stuff with him or her. The intent is for the mentor to provide a positive role model in the child's life, filling a spot that otherwise would be lacking. They play with them, encourage them, help them with their homework, and in general provide one-on-one time. Everyone needs encouragement and help; I won't argue with that.

    They are also funded by United Way. United Way funds everything, apparently. It seems to be quite the popular charity... No wonder everyone promotes it.

    Speech class is getting to me. While Mrs. Mashburn was talking, I felt irrationally compelled to start analyzing her delivery, her rhetorical appeals, her introduction and organization, and her word choices. It was the weirdest thing. I did notice she was chewing bubblegum. I have the sneaking sensation my speech teacher would not approve. But, hey, I'm the person who plans to play with children's building blocks for my demonstration speech next week, so whom am I to point fingers...

    Forum tonight also only lasted about thirty minutes, due to the Civil Wars concert. My family was most disappointed when we could not get tickets, because they SOLD OUT IN LIKE THE FIRST FEW HOURS. Goodness... And to think that John Paul White's wife was my first-grade teacher... Wow. Their career has really taken off. All the best to them.

    In Pace Christi,


A man that would expect to train lobsters to fly in a year is called a lunatic; but a man that thinks men can be turned into angels by an election is a reformer and remains at large.
 – Peter Dunne

And On Top Of Everything Else, It's Raining

It's never a good sign when it rains in movies. It just isn't. The rain's always there for the dramatic effect, of course- usually during a sad or important scene. Somebody dying? Cue the rainclouds. Somebody deciding to go to war? Cue thunder and lightning. Epic battle over something equally epic? Cue battle in the mud.

    Yes, I was thinking of Mulan, The Jungle Book, and Thor. Not necessarily in that order. It rains at Helm's Deep, too (the fortress is actually the Hornburg, but it's almost impossible to get that across to people), but the rain was actually in the book, so it's excused. Actually, in the book it rains at the Battle of the Pelennor Fields as well, but that doesn't happen in the movie. Can you believe they missed a dramatic rain? Nope, I can't either.

    It's safe to bet that in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey we will get to see the dwarves and Bilbo in the rain, and there will be shenanigans of some description. I do believe there is a rain scene in the book early on, anyway...

    What I was actually thinking of, when I titled this post, was that line from Pirates of the Caribbean 3: "And have you noticed that, on top of everything else, it's raining?" "Oh, that's not a good sign." I can't remember which one said what, but that was Pintel and Ragetti, those two pirates always bumbling around and looking generally ridiculous. I used to call them Sphagetti and Pinto Bean since I couldn't remember how their names went.

    *flees in terror as the POC fans chash me with flaming torches*

    And, yes, it's a Monday today, too. Mondays are just so much better when it's raining.

    However, I only had three classes today, when I would usually have four, so that makes it better. I only have two tomorrow, one Wednesday, and no classes at all Friday! Isn't it wonderful when your teachers have to go to conferences?

    The good news is that it only drizzled today and never out-and-out poured. UNA was not flooded; one did not need thigh-high boots and ponchos to wade through the reincarnation of Noah's flood to get to the Guillot, and the parking lots were not swimming. No squirrels pelted me with acorns, either, so all was well... relatively well. I also managed not to get my tennis shoes soaked, so I didn't have cold, wet socks for the rest of the day. Few things rival cold, wet socks for uncomfortability. Unless you're hungry and sitting in a freezing computer lab with cold, wet socks and the vent is blowing arctic air down on your head....
    Yup. Been there, done that. I have learned to pick better seats in the language lab. As in, not under the vent. Stupid vent.

    Somehow, miraculously, the victory torch remains lit. It's almost certainly gas. My dad says the torch used to be in front of the Guillot. Or, rather, whatever building was there because I'm not sure they had the Guillot back then when he was there. I think he said once that the present while he was there was actually named Guillot, hence the building. That must be his picture hanging over the stairwell in the GUC. Anyway, there was a student center of some description there when my dad was at UNA and the victory torch was in front of it then. Now it has its own little garden, complete with dorky lion statue (I cannot count the number of times people have walked by and ridiculed it- whichever English teacher is sending his/her students to write papers about it, please stop!) and crepe myrtles and azaleas.

    It's still nice to see the torch, though. It's very uplifting, especially in the rain. Plus, it also means we won the game. Winning might not be everything, but it sure beats coming in second, ya know? (To paraphrase Bear Bryant.) Yes, I bought a homecoming shirt and proudly wore it Sunday. Bobby's back and all that good stuff. I liked the paintings on the Guillot windows, especially the Twitter/whatever messages about the football program hitting 88 mph.

    Yes, I had to do some research to find out what the deal with Back to the Future was. Apparently, Deloreans were horrible cars that would never reach 88 mph in real life, which was the joke. They wouldn't be remembered nowadays, save for the movie.

    I'm not even sure I spelled Delorean right...

    For that matter, I'm not really sure where I'm going with this post...

    And that means, I had better stop rambling and sign off and actually do something productive, like studying for a literature test.

    In Pace Christi,