I had to work, so i missed the Adrienne Rich poetry reading, but from what i’ve heard i didn’t miss too much. I haven’t actually read any of her poetry, though, so some day i definitely need to.
I went to the Susan Borque lecture (“A Women’s College for the World’s Women: Politics and Education in a Perilous Time”) at 4:30 and it was okay. I definitely dozed off during part of it but i talked to Colleen briefly after and she said she did, too, so we both felt better for not being the only person.
And then when i was walking home i saw athene!
My parents arrived around dinnertime and my dad ate in the house because it was free and then we went to Marketplace Café in Thornes (well, eventually we did - we walked downtown for a while until i could decide what it was i wanted to eat) where my mom and i got dinner.
Then we went to “Pops Across America.” It was actually really cool because it was lots of songs about different places in America, not just songs about America in general. Although some of the gimmicks went on a bit too long, Crapapella (proud to be the worst a cappella group on campus) was fun. And the handbell choir was wonderful. (People who start clapping before a piece is over, and the don’t stop, suck.) When the conductor motioned for the orchestra to put up their instruments i, without thinking, almost moved my arms as i would have if i were playing. Yeah, that’s what 10 years of Orchestra will do to you. Pops was long (over 2 hours) but generally quite good.
As we waited outside JMG (because i hadn’t bought tickets in advance) underneath the sign that said “This is about Smith,” my dad joked that instead of calling us first-years and such, we should be: ironsmiths, bronzesmiths, silversmiths, goldsmiths. I thought that was fabulous.
My family and i went to the LBTA panel discussion, which was good. My dad really liked that the panelists came across as genuine people, not just representatives of their specific letter (L, B, T) regurgitating the party line or whatever. Lee, the trans panelist, talked about self-identifying as a dyke and a boy simultaneously, and after we left my dad said he didn’t ask his “smart-ass” question: “If you identify as a boy, why are you at Smith?” I told him the issue of why tranny boys would want to be at Smith, a women’s college, comes up a lot, so it would have been a perfectly legitimate question. So when we got back to my dorm i pulled up the appropriate LBTA page. He and my mom looked at a lot of stuff on the LBTA stuff and then my mom took a nap and my dad did other stuff online and i did some reading for class. I definitely don’t regret skipping the inaugural ceremonies.
Then we got boxed lunches. Yum. And now i have a water bottle. :) (My dad pointed out that on the label, it says “Spring source: PO Box ...” which is quite bizarre.)
We were probably going to go to the Alumnae Panel (“Private College with a Public Conscience”) but athene told me i should go to live-action chess at Davis, and since they were at the same time, live-action chess won. I hadn’t mentioned that it was “vampires versus things that kill vampires” themed chess, but the chalking in front of Davis said “Because you *really* want to see Buffy + Ringwraith duke it out” and when my mom saw that she said, “Well if I’d known that’s what it was, I wouldn’t have even had to think to make a decision.” :)
They certainly weren’t the most well-played chess games (i think people should have had signs on their heads saying which pieces they were or something) but they were really fun. A lot of spectators were pawns because there weren’t enough players. There was still plenty of time left after the first round, so they played a round of speed chess, in which i got roped into being a pawn on the dark side. White won the first round and black won the second round. And Spike killed Buffy (the White Queen) both times, which seemed fitting. Spike definitely had the body type and wardrobe and such down. My dad said “I didn’t know Spike had pink hair” (the person playing Spike had pale pink hair) and my response was, “He’s getting in touch with his feminine side.” athene was Drusilla, the other Black Knight, and was of course appropriately insane. And after the game she bit me. Apparently i come from good blood. :)
The banter during the game was definitely the funnest part. One of the black pawns who had been knocked off walked by with a water bottle and Spike said, “Is that holy water?” and the person said no and Spike said, “Yes it is, just look at the label.” Because instead of the usual Smith picture, it had the Inauguration logo, and who are we inaugurating but [Carol Tecla] Christ. I thought that was one of the best jokes of the afternoon.
We had dinner in my house, which was good because we ate with Layna and then hung out in her room for a couple hours before going to the fireworks. We had considered going to Enemy of the People but the fireworks. (I have decided i am going to go on Thursday, and buy my ticket after class on Monday.) We went all the way down to the fence on the Athletic Fields. I have never been that close to fireworks, and i don’t know if i’ll do it again, but i’m glad i did it. The fireworks were very good, though loud and sometimes incredibly bright. It frightened me sometimes when the fireworks didn’t go high enough because they looked so low and i was worried someone was going to get hurt. But in general a very good show.
My parents left after the fireworks and i went to Erika’s room because she had invited me to the birthday party there. I got there around 11 and stayed until the end around 2:30. Wow. Mostly i just snacked and listened to people’s conversations, but sometimes i talked Buffy with people -- Amanda and Sylvia. sarrin thinks someone should organize a cross-campus Buffy party, but i think there are more of us than people think and i am so not up for organizing something like that.
I need to organize a Buffy musical episode viewing party because Layna and Lisa and too many other people who want to see it have not yet seen it.
Also, there is the Everyone on Layna’s friendslist who’s at Smith party which will happen one of these days, i insist. (Unless i end up meeting everyone in various ways before we get it together to organize said party.)
One of Erika’s friends (from Hampshire?) said last year there was a student-taught class on Buffy at Hampshire last semester. And at some point on Sunday Layna said that Petra applied to teach a Buffy J-term course. Buffy courses make me happy to no end.
Erika’s friend red-headed-Nate was fun to hang out with. I don’t think Joe would be able to stand him, but sometimes he sounded just like Joe, which was very bizarre for me.
My parents came and we went to the First Churches. (I learned today that it’s not really a Baptist church, but a merger of a United Church of Christ and an American Baptist Church, and the current minister comes from the UCC tradition.) I’m fond of the fact that when we do prayers at the end the minister always prays for the people of Afghanistan and Iraq and prays for peace and so on because i really don’t like war or killing or any of that, even though i know that it’s always very complicated and a lot of times there is already lots of death going on and you are causing more death in the short-term to stop that death (that’s the part that makes it really complicated for me, because i certainly can’t justify in any moral way just allowing death and suffering to go on, though certainly you need to take time to figure out what the best way to act is). But this Sunday, Kelly and i believe Peter as well said things like “unjust war” and faulted the sanctions and stuff, and i felt that to be really problematic because there you’re moving out of “We want peace, always and everywhere and for everyone” into “Certain wars are bad for certain reasons.” My dad has e-mailed me lots of articles and essays about Iraq and Afghanistan and Zimbabwe and while i don’t have the time or the energy to really read them thoroughly and really decide what my opinion is on any of this, i know enough to be really conflicted to know that it is all very complicated and difficult. So yes, that was the low point of the weekend.
So then we came back and had brunch with Layna and talked about, among other things, faith. I am going to have a long spiritual journey throughout my entire life i think. My mom keeps reminding me that religion is about faith, that it can’t all make sense, that you are going to have to just believe some things you don’t understand. I know that, and i can make the God leap, but any further than that i need a lot of it to make sense. Oh well.
I did a little homework after my parents left and then went to dinner. Layna was becoming convinced that Britta and i were the same person, so we made a dinner date in the Biodome. The fact the world has not collapsed in upon itself is proof for you all that we are not in fact the same person. But now we have met, which is good. We also ate with Meredith and her roommate, whom i realized i had met last year but had not connected with being Meredith’s roommate. I feel so social sometimes.
Then there was the 3-hour Joss Whedon EVENT in Meredith’s room. Yay, Meredith! (Though i totally forgot to get to see your whore boots.) The 3 episodes were all fairly solidly good episodes though certainly not the best of their respective seasons.