Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Strange Homonid/What you did

So I'm sitting in this lady's office and she has three degrees on the wall while she tells me that I can't get either of the two I'm due.* You see, it's really important that you tell the advisor scheduling office (it has a real name, but I don't know it) that you want to meet with your advisor not an advisor and what a fool I am for meeting with, like, every advisor in the advising office. (probably also has a real official name that I don't know) My perspective on the matter is shouldn't one of the six advisors I met with suggested this?** Or suggested that there was something wonky with my language requirement before I was auditing my degree? That sounds fair to me. Regardless, now I have to contact two advisors and make sure they have e-mails from five months ago because I don't have them anymore.***

*My new advisor hoards an Associates and a Bachelors in the Arts, and a Masters in Education.
**Aside from this one, who is telling me so far along it may as well be hind-sight.
***Of course I should still have them. But I don't. I am so happy with this situation.

In other news, I have the beginnings of a story. It seems like this is the best place to post it's origin:

My handle for everything but antiquing forums is "Strange Hominid." I started using it for a blog on the human body, innovation, and presentation. When I started writing I was entirely focused on unfortunate design features and workarounds. Angie had been living with varicose veins for three years and was trying everything short of invasive surgery to make them go away along with pain relievers (pleasantly and with no fuss) went to get for her.

She found this cream that was reducing the swelling. When she raved to a doctor friend about how effective it was he said she could just take more aspirin or use Iceyhot. Her legs were abusing her veins, and the aspirin and Iceyhot-like cream were reducing the swelling, albeit temporarily, that her legs were inducing to compensate for gravity's effect on a relatively new design.

I started researching every other punishment visited upon humans in return for their defiance of gravity and form: hernias, hemorrhoids, slipped discs, and pretty much everything else that can happen to a spine that doesn't involve an automobile or a shower. Over five million year ago, our pelvis flared out and our femurs bent in to put all our weight on our knees and shins. What a fool I'd been to get excited about Angie's wide hips and round ass. I was just dooming our child to shin splints. Catholic guilt, you have a new friend.

In order to avoid a spiral of self-loathing, I started looking into other human innovations.

Culture as a tool. While sexual dimorphism was comparatively minimal, sexual difashionization was wildly divergent. The flow chart for a man's morning dress routine was simple. I drew it up in a night without referencing a single history book, cultural anthropology journal, or issue of Vogue. Then I started the women's chart.

I thought of a woman I had seen walking in a simple green dress. Perhaps the wind was very high or it was too hot to wear a slip, but her skirt was catching right in her crotch. I had no idea what she was doing wrong. I realized then I was on the cusp of an investigation that I was completely unprepared for, and would take me deep into a dark silken heart that I could not return from as myself. I thought of that, looked at my chart for men,* and scrapped "fashion as a iteration of culture" project.

*The chart was very direct. It's first question was whether or not it was hot. If it wasn't it asked if you preferred boxers or boxer-briefs, then referred you to the question asked if it was hot: what pants are appropriate for the days activities? jeans or dress pants? I couldn't break down women's underwear choices into binaries. It was maddening. Angie suggested "Are you worried about pantie lines?"


popquizkid said...

i have to ask, does the name "jane pletcher" sound at all familiar to you? she's an adviser in arts + sciences, and, well...she's just who i thought of when i read this. she was my undergrad adviser. had lots of cat photos in her office. pretty clueless. as in, if i didn't know exactly what i needed from her when i went in to see her, it was a completely wasted trip.

so are you really not going to be able to graduate this quarter? what about your language requirement is screwy? did the culture thing not fill in the gaps, like you thought it would?*

re: story -

so angie is using the magic cream, the aspirin, AND the icyhot? or is the magic cream the icyhot? i know this is a technicality, but it tripped me up.

i think it would be interesting to think about the likelihood of acts of god on clothing/clothing choices, and how it is different for men v. women. like, in your story, the wind may or may not cause the skirt/crotch problem. granted, if it was lack of a slip, it was her "fault." but if it was the wind, how could she account for that? not wear a skirt that day? but guys don't have to make these types of decisions. pants do not bend to the powerfulness of god/wind.

all of this might be completely beside the point, but. well. i thought it was interesting at the time.

*i like whole paragraphs made up of questions.

misanthropic bastard said...

re: graduation
I'm not graduating until fall quarter. I still have three months in which I can raise hell with my army of advisers.

re: story
no. the magic cream may as well be icyhot. they both facilitate blood flow. as does aspirin.
I suppose this is desirable, as I'm summarizing a summary. but shucks...
with the failed flowcharts attempt, I had hoped to parody a privilege women enjoy which I'm somewhat envious of: variation in fashion decisions. With variation comes complexity and my narrator's inability to puzzle out what mistake this woman has made, if any, is meant to be indicative of that.

popquizkid said...

well i guess i had that all fucked up.

i get it now.

(good luck with graduation.)

angelfantabulous said...

I like the idea of "Culture as a tool."
----> I like the idea of flow charts for clothes ... Which reminds me---> Aaron suggested I make an Excel spreadsheet of all my clothes so I could chart my outfit possibilities.
-------> He thought this was funny.
> I thought it was genius.

misanthropic bastard said...

The idea is genius. Please implement and track development. Incidentally, have either of you seen "Clueless?" Maybe hypotheses can be mined from there. It's in the very beginning, and it's not a spreadsheet but it's on a computer...

Incidentally, I was just about to run this blog by my anthro teacher as a paper topic when I saw your comment.


I have no idea what you are doing with the arrows.
Post-Oldowan spears?
Educate, please.

angelfantabulous said...

The arrows, my friend, are my little flow chart:)