hawkwing_lb: (Default)
Climbed: orange 6A, grey 6A. Attempted blue 6A: failed earlier than previous attempt. Attempted black 6B: interesting, failed. In quick succession, no rests: blue 5, yellow 5, pink 4.
hawkwing_lb: (Default)
Two 6As (orange, grey). Half another, interesting 6A (blue), which I may be able to finish next time, if my right wrist is less twitchy. A 5, which I flew up feeling powerful to finish.

Still not where I want to be, but improvements. Improvements!
hawkwing_lb: (Default)
Which I haven't managed since, oh, February or thereabouts. So, blue 5, red 6A, orange 6A, very easy pink thing, fell off yellow 6A due to sore fingers, gave up grey 6A due to sore everything. Nothing clean bar the two easy things... but I am getting better.

Maybe my bloodtest results, which are supposed to come back to me today or tomorrow, will explain why I'm tired so often, though.

Another cold, bright November day. The window is open, and I can smell rosemary - it must be from the Provost's garden, because I can't think where else it could be coming from.

Okay. Time to Greek. And then read the smelly book. But first, closing the window, because the outside world is 5C.
hawkwing_lb: (DA 2 scaring the piss)
So, today I climbed. In terms of physical recovery, I'm much improved from last week, and at about the right level of strength/ability for where I should be after nine months either irregular or off climbing.

(The total: two 5s, one 4(twice), one 6A, half of two other 6As - which are now my projects until I actually succeed in not falling off.)

There's a mini-gym-triathlon in ten days. I've signed up for that. I need a lot of training to get the stamina back... and meanwhile, I need to turn a review of Sharps in for Vector, sort my thesis priorities into some sort of order, figure out how to allocate time for my Greek study - modern and ancient - and rough out some more column pieces.

In my copious free time, I'm sure I'll figure out how I'm going to get all the other things that need doing done.

Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee.
hawkwing_lb: (Ned virtue)
Climbing: improvement visible on last week. Strength returns a little, but slowly. Such is always the way.

My post is live at Tor.com: Why Are Fantasy Films All About The Men?

Other links of interest:

Cultural Imperialism Bingo at the World SF Blog.

The Victimisation of Lara Croft.

Jim Hines on boundaries.

Kameron Hurley on Prometheus and white guy sperm seeding the universe.

Brit Mandelo spotlights James Tiptree/Alice Sheldon at Tor.com.

I came across Aliette de Bodard's SF short story "Scattered Along the River of Heaven" at Clarkesworld, and lo, it is good.
hawkwing_lb: (In Vain)
Gym stuff: climbing proved an improvement over Tuesday, though I repent most heartily my loss of conditioning.

Links of interest:

Aliette de Bodard's fantastic short story "Immersion" at Clarkesworld. (And I say this as someone who rarely reads shorts.)

Amal El-Mohtar on The Sandbaggers and Female Exceptionalism.

[livejournal.com profile] jennygadget has some thoughts after reading the first chapter of How To Suppress Women's Writing.




What you might call a grand soft day today. Never got brighter than twilight, really. A rain like mist occasionally spattered into greater vigour. Crossing the Liffey between Connolly Station and the arse-end of college, the Jeannie Johnston down the river almost obscured by the mist: docklands disappearing in the rain. River high and swollen with the tide, lapping less than a meter or so from the bridge arches, the green weed-scent of river water at war with the faintest tang of brine.

If it's like this tomorrow, I don't think I want to leave the house. It makes my joints ache. I am too young to creak in the damp.
hawkwing_lb: (Bear CM beyond limit the of their bond a)
Γυνὴ Β

φέρε τὸν στέφανον: ἐγὼ γὰρ αὖ λέξω πάλιν.
οἶμαι γὰρ ἤδη μεμελετηκέναι καλῶς.
ἐμοὶ γὰρ ὦ γυναῖκες αἱ καθήμεναι— [165]

Πραξάγορα

γυναῖκας αὖ δύστηνε τοὺς ἄνδρας λέγεις;

Γυνὴ Β

δι᾽ Ἐπίγονόν γ᾽ ἐκεῖνον: ἐπιβλέψασα γὰρ
ἐκεῖσε πρὸς γυναῖκας ᾠόμην λέγειν.


Second Woman:
Give back the crown: I'll speak again.
For I think I've taken good thought.
With/for me, O women who have been seated in assembly -

Praxagora:
Women again, wretched one? Aren't you speaking to men?

Second Woman:
Because of that Epigonos! For observing him,
I thought I spoke to women.


Πραξάγορα

ἄπερρε καὶ σὺ καὶ κάθησ᾽ ἐντευθενί:
αὐτὴ γὰρ ὑμῶν γ᾽ ἕνεκά μοι λέξειν δοκῶ [170]
τονδὶ λαβοῦσα. τοῖς θεοῖς μὲν εὔχομαι
τυχεῖν κατορθώσασα τὰ βεβουλευμένα.
ἐμοὶ δ᾽ ἴσον μὲν τῆσδε τῆς χώρας μέτα
ὅσονπερ ὑμῖν: ἄχθομαι δὲ καὶ φέρω
τὰ τῆς πόλεως ἅπαντα βαρέως πράγματα. [175]
ὁρῶ γὰρ αὐτὴν προστάταισι χρωμένην
ἀεὶ πονηροῖς: κἄν τις ἡμέραν μίαν
χρηστὸς γένηται, δέκα πονηρὸς γίγνεται.
ἐπέτρεψας ἑτέρῳ: πλείον᾽ ἔτι δράσει κακά.
χαλεπὸν μὲν οὖν ἄνδρας δυσαρέστους νουθετεῖν, [180]
οἳ τοὺς φιλεῖν μὲν βουλομένους δεδοίκατε,
τοὺς δ᾽ οὐκ ἐθέλοντας ἀντιβολεῖθ᾽ ἑκάστοτε.
ἐκκλησίαισιν ἦν ὅτ᾽ οὐκ ἐχρώμεθα
οὐδὲν τὸ παράπαν: ἀλλὰ τόν γ᾽ Ἀγύρριον
πονηρὸν ἡγούμεσθα: νῦν δὲ χρωμένων [185]
ὁ μὲν λαβὼν ἀργύριον ὑπερεπῄνεσεν,
ὁ δ᾽ οὐ λαβὼν εἶναι θανάτου φήσ᾽ ἀξίους
τοὺς μισθοφορεῖν ζητοῦντας ἐν τἠκκλησίᾳ.

Praxagora:
You, go away, and henceforth sit in assembly:
taking this [crown], on your account I myself will speak.
I pray to the gods, standing upright,
to hit the mark with the things which have been resolved upon. [which I resolved on]
To me equally as great [the things] of this land among you
[This land is just as greatly valued by me as it is by you]
I'm grieved and I bear heavily
all the matters of the city.
For I see that she's subject herself to worthless front-rank men
always: and if someone one day
were to be born good, ten would be born evil.
You rely upon another: he'll accomplish worse evils yet.
So it's hard to advise men who're hard to appease:
you've feared those who want to love [you],
while those who don't want to love you, you supplicate every time.
There was a time when we didn't hold assemblies,
not one at all: but we believed
Agurrios evil: now with them using [since they're furnished up? established?]
the one who takes silver praises [himself?] above measure,
while the one who doesn't, he says worthy of death are
those who seek to receive wages in the assembly.


Γυνὴ Α

νὴ τὴν Ἀφροδίτην εὖ γε ταυταγὶ λέγεις.

Πραξάγορα

τάλαιν᾽ Ἀφροδίτην ὤμοσας; χαρίεντά γ᾽ ἂν [190]
ἔδρασας, εἰ τοῦτ᾽ εἶπας ἐν τἠκκλησίᾳ.

Γυνὴ Α

ἀλλ᾽ οὐκ ἂν εἶπον.

Πραξάγορα
μηδ᾽ ἐθίζου νῦν λέγειν.
τὸ συμμαχικὸν αὖ τοῦθ᾽, ὅτ᾽ ἐσκοπούμεθα,
εἰ μὴ γένοιτ᾽, ἀπολεῖν ἔφασκον τὴν πόλιν:
ὅτε δὴ δ᾽ ἐγένετ᾽, ἤχθοντο, τῶν δὲ ῥητόρων [195]
ὁ τοῦτ᾽ ἀναπείσας εὐθὺς ἀποδρὰς ᾤχετο.
ναῦς δεῖ καθέλκειν: τῷ πένητι μὲν δοκεῖ,
τοῖς πλουσίοις δὲ καὶ γεωργοῖς οὐ δοκεῖ.
Κορινθίοις ἄχθεσθε, κἀκεῖνοί γέ σοι:


First Woman:
Yes by Aphrodite, you say this well indeed.

Praxagora:
Wretched woman, you swore by Aphrodite? Clever if
you did that, if you said that in the assembly!

First Woman:
But I wouldn't say it!

Praxagora:
Don't be accustomed to saying it.
This alliance afresh, when we considered it,
they said if it didn't happen, it'd ruin the city:
and then when it did, they were hated, and the orator
who persuaded us about it straightaway fled.
It's necessary to launch a ship? for the labourer it seems good,
for the rich man and the farmers it doesn't seem good.
You were vexed with Corinth, and they indeed with you:
now they're useful, and now you've become a friend.




This evening's climbing encompassed four lead climbs and four top-ropes, pushing myself hard. I still feel as though I'm not pushing myself hard enough when it comes to exercise-related things, especially since there was no jujutsu yesterday.

Things to do before Monday:
- Finish funding app stuff
- email supervisor about getting some feedback
- modern Greek homework (composition) (oral comprehension)
- climbing Friday
- karate Saturday

- progress on second paper for presentation
hawkwing_lb: (Default)
Πενθεύς

ἐκφέρετέ μοι δεῦρ᾽ ὅπλα, σὺ δὲ παῦσαι λέγων.

Διόνυσος

ἆ. [810]
βούλῃ σφ᾽ ἐν ὄρεσι συγκαθημένας ἰδεῖν;

Πενθεύς

μάλιστα, μυρίον γε δοὺς χρυσοῦ σταθμόν.

Διόνυσος

τί δ᾽ εἰς ἔρωτα τοῦδε πέπτωκας μέγαν;

Πενθεύς

λυπρῶς νιν εἰσίδοιμ᾽ ἂν ἐξῳνωμένας.

Διόνυσος

ὅμως δ᾽ ἴδοις ἂν ἡδέως ἅ σοι πικρά; [815]

Πενθεύς

σάφ᾽ ἴσθι, σιγῇ γ᾽ ὑπ᾽ ἐλάταις καθήμενος.

Διόνυσος

ἀλλ᾽ ἐξιχνεύσουσίν σε, κἂν ἔλθῃς λάθρᾳ.

Πενθεύς

ἀλλ᾽ ἐμφανῶς: καλῶς γὰρ ἐξεῖπας τάδε.

Διόνυσος

ἄγωμεν οὖν σε κἀπιχειρήσεις ὁδῷ;

Πενθεύς

ἄγ᾽ ὡς τάχιστα, τοῦ χρόνου δέ σοι φθονῶ. [820]


Pentheus:
Bring here to me weapons, and you, stop talking.

Dionysos:
Ah!
You want to see them, who have lain together in the hills?

Pentheus:
Indeed, giving an immense weight of gold.
[Very much, and I'll give a lot of gold for it.]

Dionysos:
Why have you fallen into this great desire?
[Why do you want it so much?]

Pentheus:
I'd distressfully see her drunk.

Dionysos:
All the same, you'd gladly see those things which are bitter to you?

Pentheus:
Be clearly, sitting in silence under the firs.
[Indeed yes...]

Dionysos:
But they'll track you down, even if you go sneakily.

Pentheus:
But obviously: for declaring this nobly.

Dionysos:
So will we lead you? Will you set out on the road?

Pentheus:
Lead as fast as possible: I grudge you the time.




So, climbing. My current climbing partner is a tiny giggly Polish woman who's basically the human equivalent of the Energiser Bunny. And really freaking strong. So there I was, being slightly intimidated by her ability to just keep going, when she points to yet another still-unrated route and says, "You should do this one! It is very doable!"

Dear friends: at this point I'd already climbed three 6As and a 5 (difficulties estimated), and was feeling a wee bit pumped in the forearm. But I don't like to not even attempt a challenge.

Well. If pinchy, reachy, horribly technical and made me scream like a baby is your definition of doable, yeah, sure. It's doable. While I was clinging on with two tiny fingertips per hand and stabbing my toe at a hold the whole length of my leg away...

So I fell off a lot. And eventually clawed my way past the two-thirds mark. And then my fingers, which were once again pinching tiny holds while my foot scrabbled for something, anything, decided Cap'n, she canna take much more a'this!

And that was that for my attempt at a buggering bloody 6C. (At least a 6B+, at any rate.)

I managed one more route (estimated 5) and fell off halfway up a couple more 6Bs before packing it in for the night. Still. Tonight's evidence suggests I'm building back strength, since it's an improvement on Monday and last week. My upper body strength is always going to take more maintenance than I'd prefer.
hawkwing_lb: (Bear CM beyond limit the of their bond a)
Today, my supervisor gave me a book. Gave, not loaned!

The way to my heart, she has it.

(The book, by the way, is Robert Garland's Eye of the Beholder, about disease and deformity in ancient Greece. I've read the earlier edition - it's pretty cool, albeit a touch full of unthinking ablism.)




Two Greek classes today, ancient and modern. I foresee much confuzzlement on Mondays from now until March. Also some watching of Greek TV on Youtube: I need to get my ear in. Quickly.




Falling off walls: a good thing in life. Sent: two estimated 5s and a 6A, made another step higher on last time's estimated 6B, and threw myself at about three hard things that gave me little satisfaction - one is really dynamic, and I think it's either a hard 6A or a middling-low 6B: lots of hop-and-reach, and one move that may be a true dyno. Fun was had.




Also a good thing: Joanna Russ's The Country You Have Never Seen. [livejournal.com profile] britmandelo, I may have to make squeeful noises in your direction for the recommendation, when I've read more than three pages of it. I hope you'll forgive me when that happens.
hawkwing_lb: (Default)
"...Most hostile to me you are of Zeus-nourished kings:
for always to you strife and war is beloved, and battles.
If you're strong, a god bestowed that on you.
And having gone homeward together with your ships and your companion
Myrmiddons, be lord: I shall take no heed of you,
nor do I regard your grudgery. But I'll promise you this,
just as shining Apollo takes for himself the daughter of Chryses from me,
while I, together with my ships and my companions
will send her forth, I'll also carry off fine-featured Briseida,
your honour-gift, going myself to your tent, in order that you might know well
how much better I am than you, and some other might dread
to declare themselves equal to me, and to compare himself against me."

Thus he spoke. And distress was brought to the son of Peleus, and in his heart
and in his hairy breast he halted between two opinions,
whether he, by drawing his keen sword from beside his thigh,
and thus rouse up and slay in battle the son of Atreus,
or whether he should make an end to bitter anger and restrain his spirit.
Until he'd turned these things over against his wits and against his spirit,
he drew from its sheath his great sword, and Athena came
from heaven, for the white-armed goddess Hera sent her,
since she regarded both with affection in her spirit and she was distressed for both.
And she stood behind the son of Peleus, and grasped his golden hair,
appearing to him alone. Of the others no one saw.
And Achilleus was astounded, and he turned about, and immediately he perceived
Pallas Athena. Her eyes shone forth terribly.
And to her, speaking clearly, he addressed winged words:
"Why now, daughter of aegis-bearing Zeus, have you come?
Is it because you see here the hubris of Agamemon Atreus' son?
I will say one other thing for you, and I suppose it will come to pass,
of which insolence swiftly now may make and end for his life."




Today there were new routes at the climbing wall. For the first time in a very, very long time. Falling off things I haven't seen before is far less humiliating than falling off things I used to be able to do.

Routes: no official grades, but I believe I sent two 5s and most of a 6A, sight-lead (no beta, no top-rope) another 5, fell off a couple more 6As, and did yeoman's work on a 6B that may well become my two-month project. On Wednesday I'm to bring my own leadrope in so E. and I can try the roof.




Last week's FAoD has apparently brought on a touch of RSI. I may have to go look for wrist-straps.
hawkwing_lb: (DA2 isabela facepalm)
Tonight: running (2.5 miles in 29:30, in intervals), climbing, being social with people of whom I am exceedingly fond.

Apparently life goes better when I socialise. Even if being social turns out to be expensive, the difference it makes to my mood is quite extraordinary.

Tomorrow I'm supposed to take a black belt grading for Shotokan. It's been delayed, and I haven't trained in four weeks? I'm not really looking forward to this right now, but hey, the worst that happens is I make a fool of myself in public. Yay.

...Hopefully this will actually crosspost to LJ. One must always hope. Always and forever.

Climbing

Nov. 30th, 2011 07:19 pm
hawkwing_lb: (DA2 isabela facepalm)
Summary: I have lost vasty amounts of strength, stamina, and what passed for technique.

But it's still fun.

Also, I can still knock out 2.5 miles in intervals in about 32 minutes, which isn't too disgraceful.
hawkwing_lb: (Aveline is not amused)
Running tonight: 2 miles in 20:20, which is pretty close to a personal best for the last two years. (If I were desirous of precision, I'd check my "running" tag on here and be more specific, but I haven't managed 2 miles in under 20:00 since 2008 at least.) 2.5 miles in 27:40.

Jujutsu tonight was stick drills and forty minutes of Intro to Knife-Fighting. I now know - theoretically - how to avoid being stabbed.

In practice - well, it's a good thing we were using rubber knives, is all I can say. That shit is hard. Hack, trap, slap, slice, with a mad German (okay, so he's not mad, but he's entirely too gleeful when talking about slicing people open) telling us Three seconds! You want the fight to be over in three seconds!

Bruised now.

Apparently there's a multi-discipline martial arts club up by Magennis Place, so I might have to look into that if Kali-influenced weapon work goes away during term time. I like the stick drill lots. It has a peculiar brutal elegance, like nothing else I've ever done. But it's definitely designed more for slashing weapons - like machetes, or scimitars - than stabbing ones.

I still hate groundwork, passionately. Years of Shotokan-trained instinct screams at me that being that close in, being down, is just like being dead. Except more painful.

That's a feeling that it's hard to argue with. I still want to fight with basic oi-zuki & gyaku-zuki combinations, with a front snap kick to the knee or a side snap kick to the belly for variety: hit fast and hard, and get the hell out of range.

This is not a very effective strategy for fighting people who are faster and better able to get inside your guard. Alas, I keep having to remind myself that I'm not really allowed to kidney-punch people who get inside my guard and go straight for the grapple in sparring: back when I trained in karate, our sensei emphasised maintaining the sphere of personal space, being able to break contact and use distance as defence, over takedowns and Massive Damage.

Shotokan. Beautiful and elegant, but not that much use if someone's really trying to hurt you Real Bad For Serious in a spot where you can't duck back and run away.

Anyway.

I climbed yesterday. I'm a fairly irregular climber these days, and consequently back to being terrible at sending 6As, and without the stamina to lead for very long. Saturday, I colonised the empty Common Room with a friend to watch The Lion in Winter for the first time. The film is carried entirely on dialogue and the actors' performances - and man, Anthony Hopkins and Timothy Dalton were pretty when they were young - and the contrast between the intense intelligence of The Lion in Winter and the last few more recent films I've seen - Captain America, HP7.2, The Mummy - is shocking.

In case you're wondering, I loved The Lion in Winter. More! Now!

("Hush, dear. Mummy's fighting.")

Tired now

Jul. 27th, 2011 12:46 am
hawkwing_lb: (Criminal Minds JJ what you had to do)
Gym tonight. Ran 2 miles in 20:30 minutes, which may be a personal best, or very nearly: a continuous run of 1.75 miles is actually a personal best of the last year and change.

Also, I climbed and bought birthday presents for the parent. This counts as work, Y/N?

Tired now

Jul. 27th, 2011 12:39 am
hawkwing_lb: (CM JJ What you had to do)
Gym tonight. Ran 2 miles in 20:30 minutes, which may be a personal best, or very nearly: a continuous run of 1.75 miles is actually a personal best of the last year and change.

Also, I climbed and bought birthday presents for the parent. This counts as work, Y/N?
hawkwing_lb: (No dumping dead bodies)
Books 2011: 95-97


95. Chris Wooding, Retribution Falls.

Spoilers.

First published in the UK in 2009, and re-released earlier this year for the US market, Retribution Falls is a tale of airships and pirates, double-crosses and ne'er-do-wells, Cool Shit (tm) and banter, and Things That Go BOOM! in the most entertaining possible way.

Darian Frey, rakehell, screw-up, occasional smuggler and small-time pirate, is captain of the airship Ketty Jay. His small and highly dysfunctional crew is composed of alcoholics, terminal fuck-ups, and people with nowhere else to go. So far, they've managed to keep scraping a living together, and when the chance for a really big score comes along - a cargo airship, allegedly carrying jewels - Frey can't resist.

But the airship is rigged to blow, and when it explodes, Frey finds himself at the top of the Most Wanted list. Because what the ship was carrying wasn't jewels, but an Archduke's only son. In order to survive, he needs to find the person truly responsible, all the while avoiding the Navy, the Century Knights, and hired bounty-hunters - whose number includes the terrifying pirate captain Trinica Dancken, with whom Frey shares something of a past.

This is a tight, fast-paced book. It hooks you from the opening pages and just keeps racing along in hails of bullets, bloody fights, and banter, in an atmosphere remniscent of some 19th-century frontier. We're introduced to all of Frey's crew in short order: the wanted daemonist Grayther Crake, the new navigator Jez - who hides a dangerous secret - Malvery the alcoholic surgeon, Silo the engineer, the flyboy Pinn and the terrified pilot Harkins, and the golem Bess - and almost as soon as they appear, they're involved in a firefight.

There's a lot of interesting detail hiding in the background. Daemonism - magic, but practically outlawed - and the recent history of this world of airships and politics, pirates and Century Knights. The characters are well-drawn, rounded people. And Frey, while he starts out as a charismatic amoral rogue, undergoes significant character growth. He doesn't end up as admirable, by any stretch of the imagination, but I liked him rather more by the end than at the beginning.

Retribution Falls is really quite brilliant - it even deserves the adjective rollicking, because it's one hell of a ride.

(And if someone ever makes a miniseries of it for the television, I am so there. Because Cool Shit. And explosions!)


96. Chris Wooding, The Black Lung Captain.

I'm supposed to review this properly in this autumn's Ideomancer, so for now I'll content myself with saying that, as a sequel to Retribution Falls (which could easily stand alone), it is another step up in impressive, pacey Cool Shit with good characters.


97. Kevin Hearne, Hammered.

Third book in the Iron Druid series. This time, druid Atticus Sullivan is taking on the Norse god Thor in another fast-paced, amusing urban fantasy, complete with ominous omens and battles in Asgard. Entertaining, though light.




Today, I triumphed over the evil that is clothes shopping and successfully purchased shorts that fit. I celebrated this by going to the gym.

Running: 0.6 miles in 5 minutes, 1.75 miles in 20:50. Cycling: 4K in 16:00. Ten minutes of bouldering.
hawkwing_lb: (DA 2 scaring the piss)
This morning I wrote a three-hour exam in one and one-half hours. I suppose this is either a good thing or a bad one, but for the life of me, I couldn't tell you which.

So I decided thereafter that I'd spend a little while wandering around Dublin city: I tend to stick to my well-known and familiar routes, and I haven't walked up past Christchurch in a while. But since I'd discovered the existence of an interesting public library - Marsh's Library, which has been in continuous operation since the early 1700s - up by Kevin St. garda station, adjacent to St. Patrick's Cathedral. So I headed up that way, going up Aungier St past the Carmelite Priory, and then down along Kevin St towards the cathedral.

The library's housed in a very pleasant Georgian building. You enter through a narrow iron gate, through a small townhouse garden, up some steps to the door. You go up an age-polished staircase and buzz for entry at the giant heavy oaken door to the main room, under a plaque commemorating three hundred years of Keepers of the library. There are two galleries, narrow and lined with stacks filled with massive early printed books. There are also glass cases for the exhibition. It's fantastic. You just want to roll around in the history. But I arrived at ten minutes to lunch. They kindly let me in, but asked me to pull the garden gate shut on my way out.

After this I wandered down past the two cathedrals, ducked up to the Castle to inquire about opening hours for one of the museums there, then went back past Christchurch while the bells were tolling - seventeen times: I counted them - towards the medieval parish of St Audoen's, where a massive post-Emancipation Catholic parish church (home of the Polish mission in Ireland, and where Latin mass is said, I think, once a week) towers over the tiny basilica of medieval St Audoen's. It's rather annoying, you know: Henry Eight nicked all the interesting churches for the Anglicans. I'm not even Catholic anymore, but one does feel a smattering of conflicted puzzling resentment when one realises that all the Catholic monumental churches in Dublin are 19th century constructions - post-Emancipation. Well, obviously! But I did not actually realise this, viscerally, until... well, the last week, as a matter of fact.

St Audoen's is beside the old Cornmarket, where all the old buildings were demolished for new development before I was born. It's also beside the last remnant of Dublin's medieval wall.
Have a linky! There is a belltower with six! bells. And a sepulchre - with no body in it - for Roland FitzEustace, Lord Portlester, once Lord Treasurer of Ireland, way back in the 1400s. (FitzEustace, interestingly enough, is in Irish Mac Ghiolla Easa, McAleese. I wonder if the President's any relation?)

And then I went back home to college, stopping off for an Italian icecream milkshake in Temple Bar on the way. After which I climbed. Nice wall. Pretty wall. Painful wall.

I came home to find that my book order had arrived. I now possess a beguiling, enticing, lovely, bound-to-be-entertaining* copy of North and Hillard's Greek Prose Composition. Joy!

Going flop now. Wake me up if the world ends in the next twenty-four hours, k?

*Sarcasm. But you probably guessed that already.
hawkwing_lb: (DA2 isabela facepalm)
Attempted lead-climbing tonight.

Oof, says I. Oof.

I'm comforted by the fact that it wiped M. nearly as badly as me, even if he managed to finish a route. I'm out of practice at dangling in mid-air on nothing but will and fingertips: the roof turned out to be a killer. It shouldn't be that hard. I figured out that one must wedge one's foot behind a banana-shaped hold and be dynamic in one's movement up from an underpull. But then one is clinging horizontal to the ground and must reach around the corner.

I didn't have the strength, and now I ache in a lovely band across the shoulders. Ah, well, such is life.




Invigilating exams means getting to dress like an extra from a costume drama. I like academic gowns, which is, I'm told, rather unusual. (I want one of my very own.)




I've nearly finished my Giant Ongoing Book Cataloguing Project, for now. There are only twenty-two more to add to the lists, unless I turn up something lurking in the depths. Which will make on the order of 1800 of my books in the house, with maybe another couple of dozen of the parent's, and another couple dozen lurking dictionaries and teach-yourself-languages books.

I have a library. Pity I don't really have the space for it.




Too many things to do, not enough muscle, not enough brain, not enough time.




Painting might happen yet. Cross your fingers. Perhaps by the end of the month, there will no longer be white walls!
hawkwing_lb: (dreamed and are dead)
Second swim of the season today. Well, brief dip is still a more accurate description, though since the sun was high above the horizon at 0830 this morning and the air clear and still, I succeeded in actually thrashing around while submerged. For a very short period of time.

There's something almost holy about a clear bright morning on the shore at high tide, sunlight lancing from the water, the mutter of a quiet sea with its throat full of sand. Water waist-high and freezing, the plunge a shock of cold that steals your breath and squeezes your chest. The experience rather eludes description: the morning near-silent, the sun over the harbour, a man walking a labrador puppy at the lip between sea and sand.

I expect the water temperature ought to reach double digits next month - according to the chart, it still ought to be around about 8 Celsius right now. And in June it should reach a balmy 12 degrees Celsius. I look forward to that exceedingly.




Today was surprisingly productive, all in all. Got the DVDs stacked in the living room, did some Greek, went to town, finished my book, climbed. It ought to be interesting to see whether I can sustain as long a day tomorrow: I appear to sorely lack stamina. Perhaps I will take my new notebook down to the beach with Philostratus and actually take notes on the bloke, if it's fair enough again.

My plan to begin my thesis with a discussion of the experience of entrance is annoyed and delayed by requiring yet another ILL - but we shall overcome, indeed we shall.
hawkwing_lb: (Helen Mirren Tempest)
Books 2011: 46


46. Petronius, The Satyricon. Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1997. Translated with an introduction and notes by P.G. Walsh.

In this fragmentary ancient novel, generally ascribed to the Petronius who was Nero's contemporary and, as Tacitus says, 'arbiter of taste,' sexual hijinks abound. The lustful interludes are interrupted by a long, lovingly-described dinner party, the famous dinner of the vulgar (and obscenely wealthy) parvenu freedman Trimalchio. It's entertaining, but its humour is mean-spirited when directed at anyone but the protagonist, the rather hapless Encolpius, and the litany of debaucheries grows rather wearing. Also, hello, humorous rape! Bloody Romans.





Climbed this afternoon. My capabilities have diminished considerably since this time last year: I'm struggling on 6As, and 6Bs are for the most part beyond me. Sigh. I need to get the discipline together to drop ten kilos, which should make hauling my heavy bones up eleven metres of wall slightly less difficult.

It was fun, though. Climbed three 6As, a 5B twice, another route whose rating was either 5B or 5C, and flailed off of three 6Bs at approximately four metres up. One of the 6Bs was rated a 5. It wasn't a 5. It really wasn't.

Sample conversation:

Me (singing, off-key, while belaying): At the sickbed of Cuchulainn, we'll never say a prayer, for the ghosts are rattling at the gate and the devil's in the chair!

M. [my climbing partner](pausing halfway up the wall): You do realise most people here probably think we're mad?

Me: They're climbers. We're climbers. Sanity is kind of an optional extra around here.

M.:...

M.: Point taken.

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