Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Seven ways to live your life

To celebrate my husband's first day of real vacation, I ended up not going to the gym. See how loving I am like that? I myself have something to celebrate as well: on Monday I finished the first draft of the intro to my translation (for the diss) - I still have a long way to go, but it's a huge weight off my shoulders. I still have to edit the thing and travel elsewhere for library stuff, but ... well, in the near future, it will be sent to my advisor! (I fully anticipate him writing back "Nice work, but I was kind of hoping you'd do something completely different, so let's just scrap this one" in the nicest way possible, of course)

We ended up having to run some errands in the vicinity in order to send his grades and buy cat food and groceries. I put on an outfit that didn't involve the grey sweater, but I was too lazy to photograph it. I would, however, like to show you my new-ish earrings!

Aren't they pretty? They were a birthday present from my big brother and his family. Yup, my birthday was in August and my brother gave them to me in September when we finally saw each other, but this is the first time I've worn them. They were bought in an Indian-type store, which is always a safe choice when buying me jewelry.

During the errands, while my husband was busy buying $17 tomatoes at Whole Foods (no, I'm not exaggerating even a little), I dashed into TJ Maxx for a guerrilla strike on some more earrings. I used to love hoop earrings, but when I cut off all my hair in 2004, I thought that my particular silver hoops were a little too abrupt-looking with my lack of hair, so I discarded them in some forgotten jewelry box. I haven't owned traditional hoops since and I've sorely missed having a nice jewelry basic to put on on days like this, when I just want to run some errands. Well, enter TJ Maxx. While we were Christmas shopping on Sunday, I saw these pretty silver hoops and went back for them today:

Look at me all smiley! What could be going on?

Ahh, much better. So there are the earrings. Aren't they rad? I look forward to wearing them for real soon. (Also, check out my pretty necklace from Ioannina, Greece. From a friend.)

Speaking of rad (didja see that segue?). Rad tagged me to reveal seven things about myself. So here goes. A look into the life of Chalkdust and Boots! Eee!

1) I have no head for science. Math, apart from calculus, which I loved, is hard for me. I am, however, an enormous language geek. I speak and/or have studied ten different languages, with differing degrees of success (and I count dead languages because, dadgummit, I had to learn them): Spanish, English, French, Latin, Ancient Greek, Sanskrit, German, Hindi, Farsi, and modern Greek.

 This is part of what the "Foreign Language Reference" section of my "General Studies" bookshelf looks like

My native language is Spanish, I'm obviously also probably considered a native English speaker (I learned it at three), I'm fluent in French, I can still read Latin shakily, I remember odd bits of Attic Greek grammar, my Sanskrit is superb, I can speak emergency German in a pinch, I'm quite comfortable in Hindi, I can sing along to Farsi pop pretty easily, and I can banter in modern Greek. Despite all of this, if you put me on the phone with my father-in-law, I stammer and forget everything. 

And here's a cross-section of my reference books for Indian languages in my "South Asian Studies" bookshelf. The scary rust-colored book next to the Hindi-English dictionary is a Prakrit --> Sanskrit --> Hindi dictionary

2) When I was eight, I wanted to be an ornithologist. For, like, six years or so, I was obsessed with birds, especially birds of prey (especially vultures!) and I was the easiest person in the world for whom to buy a gift. When I was fourteen or so, I realized that I'm a huge city slicker and don't like nature all that much. 

3) I have a pretty badass singing voice. The other cool part? I sing in a tenor range. In my last choir, I was actually a tenor II. I was in a really hardcore choir in high school - we went on tour to Eastern Europe and everything when I was fifteen. I dreamed of being in a band from the ages of 17 till, um, now and when I was a senior in college I was actually preparing to audition with a band (they were med students!), but due to dealing with applying to grad school, figuring out a long-distance relationship, and writing my senior thesis, I had to bow out. I still regret that one. I coulda been huge!

4) My husband and I met on the internet. For reals. Before Facebook was all the rage, does anyone remember a site called Friendster? Newly single, I had put on my profile that I was up for dating. My husband, also newly single, was forced to make a profile and look for single women at our university (he got his Ph.D. from the same place where I studied for undergrad and most of grad school). He liked my picture, liked that I was a Sanskritist, and e-mailed me. We e-mailed for a month, met up, and the rest is history. Our parents still think we met at our university's graduate student center.

5) A little more shocking info about my husband and me: we've not even known each other five years (we met in February of 2006). We got engaged a little before being together a year and a half, and we got married less than a year after our engagement. Scandal!

6) My parents, being agnostic, never had me baptized (although they did baptize my brother, the jerk). For ten years, between the ages of 14 and 24, I identified most with the tenets of Hinduism and looked toward that as spiritual comfort in times of need. In May of 2009, a month before our church wedding, I was officially baptized in the Greek Orthodox faith. The baptism was one of the weirdest/most embarrassing experiences of my life. Remind me to tell you the story one day. It involves water boarding and olive oil. And not bathing.

Not what my baptism looked like

7) Despite being a cat-lover, I sometimes dream of getting an English bulldog. I love their jowls!

And now I'm supposed to tag seven others? Okay, here goes. As Rad says, participation is voluntary. Enjoy!

1) Anyone and everyone of Fashionable Academics
2) Ditto for the ladies of Interrobangs Anonymous
5) Erin

And anyone and everyone who wants to join in! Hope y'all enjoyed!


  1. I just learned SO much about you. That was fabulous, thank you!~ (and um, I TOTALLY want to hear about that baptism.)

  2. Was the baptism like the one in My Big Fat Greek Wedding? Sadly, that movies is my reference for all things Greek. Just like Fiddler on the Roof is responsible for everything I know about being Jewish.

    You would get along so well with my dude because your awesome language skills! I took 10 years of Spanish and can barely speak; he taught himself French over a summer. And I'm SO impressed you speak Sanskrit, Farsi and Hindi (actually, I'm impressed you speak all your languages, but especially those three)!

    And woohoo! We finally got tagged in something! You = Awesome.

  3. You have such a pretty smile! Break that out more often.

    Wow, I cannot believe how many languages you speak...german in a pinch? That make me giggle, I live in a US/Mexico border town and I cannot speak lick of spanish but I would love to learn.

    I love that your parents think you met in the grad university center.

    Wow, and thanks for tagging me in this little baby blog! I will call it squishy and he will me mine.

    P.S. Get the dog :)

  4. That was cool! Thanks for the tag! I met my husband on the internet too - we met in 2006, bought a house in 2008 and got married in 2009. I love the internets.

  5. Thanks for sharing. I'm so amazed at your language skills, lady! Very impressive. Also, yeay for the internet introducing you and your fella. I've known my Blokey for shorter than five years. When you know, you know. I can't wait to hear the baptism story.
    Congrats on finishing the first draft of the intro. That's real progress.