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January 22, 2006


The Big Ten knows how to get its party on, and Iowa's in there. Naturally.

The "beautiful town" of Iowa City "has a lot to offer," mainly in the form of bars, "packed to capacity every night of the week." The resulting University of Iowa scene is "quite crazy, and most everyone seems to enjoy it." The campus's location right in the thick of things allows the "weekend to start on Tuesday and end on Sunday"--even though the on-campus sororities and fraternities are dry.

They're dry because they had trouble keeping their houses from burning down back in The Day.

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October 19, 2005

There Oughta Be a Law

I am of the opinion that there should be an immediate stop put to groups of hard-bodied, ab-licious, shirtless, young men belonging to some college sport or other (I'm guessing wrestlers) jogging in the street. It's a menace.

I nearly rear-ended somebody with my car.

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Met a Coe College student this evening. He was sneaking into the UI library to make use of our fine research materials (or to hit on girls). I can only assume by this that Coe has a subpar library facility, despite being a snooty private college and all:

Coe College is a selective, private, nationally-recognized four-year coeducational liberal arts institution providing superior educational experiences for students since 1851.

Well, la di da. The University of Iowa got a 4-year head start. And according to the young lad I met, has "hotter girls".

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October 17, 2005

Free Advice to Grad Students Who Play Professor

(aka, TAs)

Painstakingly marking in red pen and commenting on all the times I use numerals instead of writing out numbers (less than 100) in my paper will make you look like a complete idiot when I am using direct quotes from written sources.

And I'll mention it in class just to be sure.


(Yes, I will be contesting my grade.)

(Yes, this is the kind of post I would normally keep to myself because I do not post anonymously, but I decided I don't really care in this instance because the TA in question is not giving me anywhere near my money's worth anyway. Teaching involves more than making PowerPoint slides to summarize the day's reading assignment with no additional information, and then sitting behind a desk and reading them aloud for us. I can read, what do I need you for??)

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October 14, 2005

Mad Test Taking Skillz

One reason a lot of people have trouble with tests is that they psych themselves out. Not me. Even though I knew it was Justinian, I then started to second guess myself that it was another emperor who developed the Corpus Juris Civilis. But I knew I should go with my first inclination, and I confidently wrote all about it and Justinian rule in Byzantine in the 6th Century.

Anyway, I think I did fairly well on the test.

As for the quiz in the class following that...I'm not sure. I didn't do the readings for today because I decided my midterm was more important to focus on. However, I know enough about the topic we had to write a short essay on that I could have scored 100%. Depending on what the reading actually covered. Basically, I was asked to define and talk about monasticism. So I gave a history of monasticism. But if the focus of the reading was on specific things, I may not have touched on those things. I did cover Benedictine Rule and the importance of monasteries in keeping literacy alive in the Middle Ages, and all that sort of thing. It was pretty broad. If, however, the reading was about Iona or something like that, I didn't write about it. So I'll do the reading and see.

***UPDATE: Okay, I just looked at the reading. I aced the quiz.

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Wish Me Luck

I'm off to my last exam in the current round of midterms. No more tests until November 2.

Odovacer, Clovis, Pepin the Short, Charlemagne, and Louis the Pious, oh my!

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October 11, 2005


In the future, I shall avoid registering for night classes at all costs. Especially in non-fun courses. I think "Exhibit Planning and Design" will be a safe night class. "Art Law and Ethics"? For 3 consecutive hours? Not so much.

Now, I'm off to Flibby's favorite class.

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October 07, 2005

Good to Know

(I know you're all fascinated by all this school talk.)

If you leave the library/EPB parking lot after midnight, you don't have to pay. So unless I'm automagically charged for parking on my U-Bill, I foresee later nights at the library.

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October 05, 2005

Ad Nauseam

So, like, teachers/professors are always warning people not to lengthen their papers artificially with silliness like widening the margins or choosing large fonts.

Do you think they check to see if people shorten their papers by shrinking the margins?

Not that I'd do that, mind you. That would be the height of nerdiness.

Just, umm, wondering.

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Or a Nap Sounds Nice

Don't you love it when you set aside 3 hours or so to write a paper, but then it just flows and you're done in 45 minutes? Of course you do.

Now, what to do with my time? Blog something of substance? Catch up on my reading, which I have neglected due to studying the old material for exams? Yeah, I better get a start on the book I need to have done Friday morning...

Yay, school.

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October 04, 2005

I Think It Took

It's a generally accepted fact that if you study something before you sleep, you'll remember it better. I know it's always worked for me. Anyway, when I laid down last night, I mentally went through the terms I had reviewed before turning out the light.

When I woke up this morning, the first thought in my head was, "formal fallacies are fallacies within the form".

The second thought was, "I'm such a dork."

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October 03, 2005


On my first midterm, I predicted quietly to select friends and family (i.e. anyone who asked) that I was going to get a mid/high B. I scored 88%. He pulled some obscure terminology out for the exam, so I knew I missed those.

Today's midterm, I will predict publicly that it will be a mid/high A. It's hard to say with subjective tests, so we'll see how she grades it. Tomorrow's midterm, before I even take it, I will predict a C- unless I get to studying.

As for the Braves, I predict Daniel is wrong. I predict the power of the jersey will take it to 5. And because I hate them, the Braves will win it. To spite me.

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The Truth Comes Out

Cousin: So where are you working now?

Jen: I'm not. I decided not to do that anymore.

Cousin: (Looks surprised, confused.)

Jen: I went back to school full time to get out of working.

Cousin: Good idea. Think my family would let me do that?

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September 27, 2005

Bitter Disappointment

There is going to be a reception (with free food!) for History majors Thursday afternoon.

Sadly, I will be at work. No free food there. :'(

By the way, of particular interest to my stalkers*, I am at this very moment camped out at the Main Library. I refuse to leave until I finish the paper that is due Monday. The library closes at 2:00 a.m. I have 3 pages written.

* I'm on the 2nd floor. Come say hello.

***UPDATE: (10:42 p.m.) I'm done. I need to print it out to fully red-ink it, but I think it's less of a piece of crap than I thought it would be.

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Wasting Time

When I should be studying for my logic class.

Of course, if I hadn't played Tomb Raider when I was originally supposed to be studying for my logic class, this wouldn't be a problem.

The midterm is next Tuesday. Plenty of time to waste between now and then.

My evolutionary biology midterm is tomorrow. I'll have time to review it before class tomorrow.

My anthropology midterm is Monday. I've already done a decent amount of review.

I'm in reasonably decent shape, but still need to figure out how to write 5 pages on a book that is only about 40 pages of actual text. (The rest is footnotes.) That paper is due Monday.

And I'll be out of town this weekend, so it all must be done before I leave.

Bleh, guess I'll go study logic.

Posted by Jennifer at 05:24 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Fresh-Faced Youths

And no, I'm not talking about my fellow students. I'm talking about the bus driver from last night.

It was obviously his first day on the job. He was positively adorable.

First, he actually closed up the bus when he went for his potty break. All the other drivers leave the bus open with the keys inside for anyone who wanders by to take it.

Then, he picked up the trash. It was so cute, him walking the entire length of the bus and collecting newspapers and assorted garbage. Then he threw it all away in the garbage can outside.

He showed a confused passenger the route, getting a copy of the bus schedule, opening it up, and explaining which routes run at what times. Adorable!

Finally, and this was the way I really knew he was brand-new...he doesn't hate us enough yet to randomly slam on the brakes or fly around corners in an attempt to dislodge us from our seats.

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September 26, 2005


Girl goes to sit down at end of row, 3 seats away from only other occupant in the row...

Already-Seated Girl: Actually, I'm saving these seats.

Nearly-Seated Girl: You need all these seats?

Already-Seated Girl: (looks at all the empty seats on the other side of her) Umm, I guess not.

And for the record, only one of the Already-Seated Girl's friends even showed up for lecture.

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September 24, 2005

Supah Geek

Apparently the University of Iowa wants to discourage its students from being lame and spending all day Saturday at the library. Apparently we should be watching the Hawkeyes lose to Ohio State instead of studying for the bulk of the day.

The copy center is closed. The food station is closed.

I may as well have hung out at the Math Library. (Which I do about once a week. It's nice and quiet there. And full of boys. Mostly Asians. I'm just telling it like it is.)

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September 12, 2005

What I Learned Today

That if you go back to school, your grandma will start sending money with your birthday cards again. Yay, grandmas!

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Baby Steps

Some mornings, getting out of bed is the hardest thing I do. It doesn't help that my two morning classes are lectures that no one will know I missed.

But I'm up and dressed, despite the seductive comfort of my bed this morning.

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September 07, 2005

Quickly, Before the Battery Craps Out

Iowa (University of) is taking in a handful of college students from areas hit by the hurricane. One of them is even in a class of mine.

I hate when people walk all slowly behind me, like I won't know you're looking to see what I'm working on. Yeah, you, buddy.

I've never noticed this room had chairs with alternating black and gold fabric before. And I'm pretty sure these chairs were here 12 years ago, too. Heh.

Umm, I did have something actually substantial to write about, but I've forgotten it. The stalling-with-random-observations thing hasn't helped.

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September 04, 2005

What I Did Today

Woke up at a rather late hour.

Read the first 133 pages of a novel for one of my classes.

Drove to the Coralville spillway to see the fossil gorge for the second time. (The first time was when it was brand new. Umm, not when it was brand new. But when it was first unearthed in 1993. Umm, after the flooding. You know what I mean!)

Wrote reaction paper to the first 133 pages of the previously mentioned novel.

It's the first paper I've written since returning to school, and I am a little rusty on things like citation.* But I think it came out okay. Nice to get the first one done, anyway. Tomorrow I'll start another one for a different class. Maybe I'll finish it, since I didn't really expect to have the first one done until tomorrow.

* Which is why I spent $18 on a research paper style manual. It's one of the few books I willingly paid full price for this semester.

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September 03, 2005

Go Hawks!

The Iowa Hawkeyes stomped all over the Ball State...whatevers.

Working 11 hours isn't so bad. Except for the part about being on your feet and running around for all 11 hours, which is what I get to do each home game Saturday.

I'm off to the couch.

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August 31, 2005

I'm Like C3PO!

(I didn't know I had it in me.)

When the TA defined differential net reproductive success, he defined it as the number of offspring you have.

Puzzled, I raised my hand, "I thought it was the number of offspring you raised to reproductive age?"

That's right. He's my bitch.

He asked if I'd taken a Biology class already. I wanted to say, "No, but I paid 100 bucks for the f*cking book, so I'm reading it. Why don't you?"

Just kidding. He's pretty cool. But you better believe I'm reading every overpriced page in that damned book.

Posted by Jennifer at 09:53 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

August 24, 2005

Too Much of a Good Thing

I was on campus for over 12 hours today. Consecutively. And while I'm not saying that is a bad thing...okay, yes, I am saying that is a bad thing.

I was the one sitting around all over campus between classes, reading Frederick Douglass today. (I'm nearly done, btw.)

In lecture:
Prof: (rhetorically, since he is a Jewish professor) What's that on your folder?
Male Student: The Star of David.
Prof: The Star of David?! What are you doing with the Star of David, boy?! Don't you know this is white-trash Christian country?!

It got big laughs from the white-trash Christians populating the lecture hall.

Anywho, if my school nonsense actually interests you, I have some thoughts in the extended...

I am taking a class that worries me, because I'm not sure I'll learn a whole lot of new material. So far, the lectures have been reviews of history I already know and have a better grasp of than the teacher (a grad student whose focus isn't on history). And I've already read half the reading materials he has picked out for the semester. So I'm sort of in a position where I'm going for the easy fulfillment of the Humanities requirement if I stay in the class...assuming I don't lose all interest.

My history class (I'm only taking one this semester, right? *thinks to self* Right, just the one) is one I picked out because I thought it would be challenging and interesting. It's an upper-level course I opted for instead of a lower-level course that would fulfill the same requirement, because I have a bad tendency of not doing well (i.e. slacking off) in classes that don't challenge me.* However, thus far the history part is all review to me...the culture part (assigned readings beyond textbook) look interesting, but I hope the lectures and textbook get beyond what I already know pretty soon.

I had looked to see if I could earn history credit through testing, but they didn't allow that. I'm going to double-check, I think.

* This is true. My transcript from my first year is a mess. I took first-level Western Civ and barely survived. I didn't show up to any of the classes because they were boooooring, so I missed the participation grade and pop quizzes. I took an upper-level Women's History course with graduate students and got an "A".

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Further Adventures in Getting Raped By THE MAN

So. One of my classes was helpful enough to provide the book and edition needed in the class description.

I, being a diligent sort, promptly found said book for like $15 online.

Imagine my surprise when the prof said, no, you can't use that edition. You must use the new $99 (plus tax!) edition instead.

Yeah, I'm a happy camper.

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August 23, 2005

Children Are The Future. Weep For The Future.

One thing bothered me--and continues to bother me--about a class I had yesterday.

We were given a four-page description of a society with strange body rituals, ranging from daily cleansing to the painful alteration of their bodies to achieve "perfect beauty".

It was pretty clear by the second paragraph that the society was American society. The whole "located between Canada and Mexico" part kind of gave it away. Plus the society was referred to as "Nacirema"...which you can read backwards to figure it out.

However, most of the class read all four pages without figuring out who they were reading about. I think there were three of us who got it. WTF? Even if you didn't "get" the descriptions of teeth-brushing, plastic surgery, etc., I would hope that the average college student knows enough about geography to know there is only ONE country between Canada and Mexico. Seriously, WTF?

***Update: I put it in the extended entry for the curious.

"Body Ritual among the Nacirema"
American Anthropologist 58 (1956): 503-507

Most cultures exhibit a particular configuration or style. A single value or pattern of perceiving the world often leaves its stamp on several institutions in the society. Examples are "machismo" in Spanish-influenced cultures, "face" in Japanese culture, and "pollution by females" in some highland New Guinea cultures. Here Horace Miner demonstrates that "attitudes about the body" have a pervasive influence on many institutions in Nacirema society.

The anthropologist has become so familiar with the diversity of ways in which different people behave in similar situations that he is not apt to be surprised by even the most exotic customs. In fact, if all of the logically possible combinations of behavior have not been found somewhere in the world, he is apt to suspect that they must be present in some yet undescribed tribe. The point has, in fact, been expressed with respect to clan organization by Murdock.[2] In this light, the magical beliefs and practices of the Nacirema present such unusual aspects that it seems desirable to describe them as an example of the extremes to which human behavior can go.

Professor Linton [3] first brought the ritual of the Nacirema to the attention of anthropologists twenty years ago, but the culture of this people is still very poorly understood. They are a North American group living in the territory between the Canadian Cree, the Yaqui and Tarahumare of Mexico, and the Carib and Arawak of the Antilles. Little is known of their origin, although tradition states that they came from the east....

Nacirema culture is characterized by a highly developed market economy which has evolved in a rich natural habitat. While much of the people's time is devoted to economic pursuits, a large part of the fruits of these labors and a considerable portion of the day are spent in ritual activity. The focus of this activity is the human body, the appearance and health of which loom as a dominant concern in the ethos of the people. While such a concern is certainly not unusual, its ceremonial aspects and associated philosophy are unique.
The fundamental belief underlying the whole system appears to be that the human body is ugly and that its natural tendency is to debility and disease. Incarcerated in such a body, man's only hope is to avert these characteristics through the use of ritual and ceremony. Every household has one or more shrines devoted to this purpose. The more powerful individuals in the society have several shrines in their houses and, in fact, the opulence of a house is often referred to in terms of the number of such ritual centers it possesses. Most houses are of wattle and daub construction, but the shrine rooms of the more wealthy are walled with stone. Poorer families imitate the rich by applying pottery plaques to their shrine walls.

While each family has at least one such shrine, the rituals associated with it are not family ceremonies but are private and secret. The rites are normally only discussed with children, and then only during the period when they are being initiated into these mysteries. I was able, however, to establish sufficient rapport with the natives to examine these shrines and to have the rituals described to me.

The focal point of the shrine is a box or chest which is built into the wall. In this chest are kept the many charms and magical potions without which no native believes he could live. These preparations are secured from a variety of specialized practitioners. The most powerful of these are the medicine men, whose assistance must be rewarded with substantial gifts. However, the medicine men do not provide the curative potions for their clients, but decide what the ingredients should be and then write them down in an ancient and secret language. This writing is understood only by the medicine men and by the herbalists who, for another gift, provide the required charm.

The charm is not disposed of after it has served its purpose, but is placed in the charmbox of the household shrine. As these magical materials are specific for certain ills, and the real or imagined maladies of the people are many, the charm-box is usually full to overflowing. The magical packets are so numerous that people forget what their purposes were and fear to use them again. While the natives are very vague on this point, we can only assume that the idea in retaining all the old magical materials is that their presence in the charm-box, before which the body rituals are conducted, will in some way protect the worshiper.

Beneath the charm-box is a small font. Each day every member of the family, in succession, enters the shrine room, bows his head before the charm-box, mingles different sorts of holy water in the font, and proceeds with a brief rite of ablution.[4] The holy waters are secured from the Water Temple of the community, where the priests conduct elaborate ceremonies to make the liquid ritually pure.

In the hierarchy of magical practitioners, and below the medicine men in prestige, are specialists whose designation is best translated as "holy-mouth-men." The Nacirema have an almost pathological horror of and fascination with the mouth, the condition of which is believed to have a supernatural influence on all social relationships. Were it not for the rituals of the mouth, they believe that their teeth would fall out, their gums bleed, their jaws shrink, their friends desert them, and their lovers reject them. They also believe that a strong relationship exists between oral and moral characteristics. For example, there is a ritual ablution of the mouth for children which is supposed to improve their moral fiber.

The daily body ritual performed by everyone includes a mouth-rite. Despite the fact that these people are so punctilious [5] about care of the mouth, this rite involves a practice which strikes the uninitiated stranger as revolting. It was reported to me that the ritual consists of inserting a small bundle of hog hairs into the mouth, along with certain magical powders, and then moving the bundle in a highly formalized series of gestures.[6]

In addition to the private mouth-rite, the people seek out a holy-mouth-man once or twice a year. These practitioners have an impressive set of paraphernalia, consisting of a variety of augers, awls, probes, and prods. The use of these items in the exorcism of the evils of the mouth involves almost unbelievable ritual torture of the client. The holy-mouth-man opens the client's mouth and, using the above mentioned tools, enlarges any holes which decay may have created in the teeth. Magical materials are put into these holes. If there are no naturally occurring holes in the teeth, large sections of one or more teeth are gouged out so that the supernatural substance can be applied. In the client's view, the purpose of these ministrations [7] is to arrest decay and to draw friends. The extremely sacred and traditional character of the rite is evident in the fact that the natives return to the holy-mouth-men year after year, despite the fact that their teeth continue to decay.

It is to be hoped that, when a thorough study of the Nacirema is made, there will be careful inquiry into the personality structure of these people. One has but to watch the gleam in the eye of a holy-mouth-man, as he jabs an awl into an exposed nerve, to suspect that a certain amount of sadism is involved. If this can be established, a very interesting pattern emerges, for most of the population shows definite masochistic tendencies. It was to these that Professor Linton referred in discussing a distinctive part of the daily body ritual which is performed only by men. This part of the rite includes scraping and lacerating the surface of the face with a sharp instrument. Special women's rites are performed only four times during each lunar month, but what they lack in frequency is made up in barbarity. As part of this ceremony, women bake their heads in small ovens for about an hour. The theoretically interesting point is that what seems to be a preponderantly masochistic people have developed sadistic specialists.

The medicine men have an imposing temple, or latipso, in every community of any size. The more elaborate ceremonies required to treat very sick patients can only be performed at this temple. These ceremonies involve not only the thaumaturge [8] but a permanent group of vestal maidens who move sedately about the temple chambers in distinctive costume and headdress.

The latipso ceremonies are so harsh that it is phenomenal that a fair proportion of the really sick natives who enter the temple ever recover. Small children whose indoctrination is still incomplete have been known to resist attempts to take them to the temple because "that is where you go to die." Despite this fact, sick adults are not only willing but eager to undergo the protracted ritual purification, if they can afford to do so. No matter how ill the supplicant or how grave the emergency, the guardians of many temples will not admit a client if he cannot give a rich gift to the custodian. Even after one has gained and survived the ceremonies, the guardians will not permit the neophyte to leave until he makes still another gift.

The supplicant entering the temple is first stripped of all his or her clothes. In everyday life the Nacirema avoids exposure of his body and its natural functions. Bathing and excretory acts are performed only in the secrecy of the household shrine, where they are ritualized as part of the body-rites. Psychological shock results from the fact that body secrecy is suddenly lost upon entry into the latipso. A man, whose own wife has never seen him in an excretory act, suddenly finds himself naked and assisted by a vestal maiden while he performs his natural functions into a sacred vessel. This sort of ceremonial treatment is necessitated by the fact that the excreta are used by a diviner to ascertain the course and nature of the client's sickness. Female clients, on the other hand, find their naked bodies are subjected to the scrutiny, manipulation and prodding of the medicine men.

Few supplicants in the temple are well enough to do anything but lie on their hard beds. The daily ceremonies, like the rites of the holy-mouth-men, involve discomfort and torture. With ritual precision, the vestals awaken their miserable charges each dawn and roll them about on their beds of pain while performing ablutions, in the formal movements of which the maidens are highly trained. At other times they insert magic wands in the supplicant's mouth or force him to eat substances which are supposed to be healing. From time to time the medicine men come to their clients and jab magically treated needles into their flesh. The fact that these temple ceremonies may not cure, and may even kill the neophyte, in no way decreases the people's faith in the medicine men.

There remains one other kind of practitioner, known as a "listener." This witchdoctor has the power to exorcise the devils that lodge in the heads of people who have been bewitched. The Nacirema believe that parents bewitch their own children. Mothers are particularly suspected of putting a curse on children while teaching them the secret body rituals. The counter-magic of the witchdoctor is unusual in its lack of ritual. The patient simply tells the "listener" all his troubles and fears, beginning with the earliest difficulties he can remember. The memory displayed by the Nacirema in these exorcism sessions is truly remarkable. It is not uncommon for the patient to bemoan the rejection he felt upon being weaned as a babe, and a few individuals even see their troubles going back to the traumatic effects of their own birth.

In conclusion, mention must be made of certain practices which have their base in native esthetics but which depend upon the pervasive aversion to the natural body and its functions. There are ritual fasts to make fat people thin and ceremonial feasts to make thin people fat. Still other rites are used to make women's breasts larger if they are small, and smaller if they are large. General dissatisfaction with breast shape is symbolized in the fact that the ideal form is virtually outside the range of human variation. A few women afflicted with almost inhuman hyper-mammary development are so idolized that they make a handsome living by simply going from village to village and permitting the natives to stare at them for a fee.

Reference has already been made to the fact that excretory functions are ritualized, routinized, and relegated to secrecy. Natural reproductive functions are similarly distorted. Intercourse is taboo as a topic and scheduled as an act. Efforts are made to avoid pregnancy by the use of magical materials or by limiting intercourse to certain phases of the moon. Conception is actually very infrequent. When pregnant, women dress so as to hide their condition. Parturition takes place in secret, without friends or relatives to assist, and the majority of women do not nurse their infants.

Our review of the ritual life of the Nacirema has certainly shown them to be a magic-ridden people. It is hard to understand how they have managed to exist so long under the burdens which they have imposed upon themselves. But even such exotic customs as these take on real meaning when they are viewed with the insight provided by Malinowski [9] when he wrote:
Looking from far and above, from our high places of safety in the developed civilization, it is easy to see all the crudity and irrelevance of magic. But without its power and guidance early man could not have mastered his practical difficulties as he has done, nor could man have advanced to the higher stages of civilization.[10]

1 From "Body Ritual among the Nacirema," American Anthropologist 58 (1956): 503-507. All footnotes were added by John Dowell.
2 George Peter Murdock (1897-1996 [?]), famous ethnographer.
3 Ralph Linton (1893-1953), best known for studies of enculturation (maintaining that all culture is learned rather than inherited; the process by which a society's culture is transmitted from one generation to the next), claiming culture is humanity's "social heredity."
4 A washing or cleansing of the body or a part of the body. From the Latin abluere, to wash away.
5 Marked by precise observance of the finer points of etiquette and formal conduct.
6 It is worthy of note that since Prof. Miner's original research was conducted, the Nacirema have almost universally abandoned the natural bristles of their private mouth-rite in favor of oil-based polymerized synthetics. Additionally, the powders associated with this ritual have generally been semi-liquefied. Other updates to the Nacirema culture shall be eschewed in this document for the sake of parsimony.
7 Tending to religious or other important functions.
8 A miracle-worker.
9 Bronislaw Malinowski (1884-1942), famous cultural anthropologist best known for his argument that people everywhere share common biological and psychological needs and that the function of all cultural institutions is to fulfill such needs; the nature of the institution is determined by its function.
10 Did you get it?

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August 22, 2005

First Night Recap

Bleh. I am way overdue for an eye exam.

Other than that, classes went well. The first TA is really mellow, so I'm not sure how well he'll keep my interest. The second TA is not terribly dynamic, either, which could be painful for a 2 1/2 hour class, but the course itself should be interesting enough.

Now for some Tylenol.

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First Morning Recap

Had my first two classes this morning. I am very excited about the Judaism, Christianity, and Islam lecture--the professor is entertaining and fabulous. Unfortunately, we only have him for the first five weeks (Judaism).

The second class will not be quite as entertaining, I fear, but should be interesting nonetheless.

Now I must eat something and get to reading, before heading back to campus at 3:30 for my two evening classes.

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August 19, 2005

Worth Every Penny

Behold! The $98.95 (plus tax) textbook:


The money is in the plastic wrap...must be, because as soon as you take the plastic wrap off, the book is worth 50% less.

I could have bought 824 packs of Ramen noodles for $98.95. Just sayin'.

Posted by Jennifer at 04:23 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

If I Had a ****, Amazon Could **** It

Amazon.com just cancelled three of my book orders because the billing address didn't match the shipping address (hello! I JUST moved!). So now in order to have my books on time for classes (Monday!), I have to pay the ***-raping prices at the university bookstore. ******-*******!

There's $200 I could have used for, say, rent. Seriously, ******-*******!

Posted by Jennifer at 02:39 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

August 18, 2005

You Think I'm Kidding About the Water?!

Ha! Read this:

Our water system recently violated a drinking water standard.

There you go. They're trying to kill us.

(Just kidding, it's allegedly a very minor thing. ALLEGEDLY.)

Posted by Jennifer at 06:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 17, 2005


Okay, now I have internet access, that refrigerator full of alcohol, AND a bus pass. Bring it on!

Posted by Jennifer at 03:16 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

On The Plus Side, My Skin Looks *Fabulous*

Physical exertion in the summer heat killed my appetite for food, and increased my appetite for ice cold, nasty-ass Iowa City area water. I've been drinking gallons of it, and it has had a negative side effect that I will not mention in polite company.

Anyway, I have internet access and a refrigerator full of alcohol. Bring on the school year!

Posted by Jennifer at 01:28 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

August 07, 2005

Trying New Things

I did something today I've never done before...I bought myself Ramen Noodles.

They're 12 for $1.44, so you can't hardly beat that with a stick.

Can't wait to try 'em. (/sarcasm)

***UPDATE: Momofuku. Heh.

Ramen noodles unfortunately are not very good for you. Each package contains about 1560 mg of sodium. To remove the water and form them into blocks, they are deep fried in palm oil which is about the most saturated fat there is.

Explains part of the Freshman Fifteen.

Posted by Jennifer at 01:03 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

August 06, 2005

Second Weight Lifted...

I have a place to live while I go to college. Yay!

Now I have to finish packing. Boo!

But I can walk to work and the bus stop. Yay!

Posted by Jennifer at 12:33 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

August 05, 2005

Ruminations on Hydrogen and Oxygen

As I was brushing my teeth this morning, I noticed an unusually distinct smell of chlorine.

And then I remembered one of the bad things about living in Iowa City (where I will be moving in the near future to attend the University of Iowa. Pay attention, people!)...the Iowa City water. It is just plain nasty.

I hope I remember where I put my Brita filter pitcher. It's in a box...somewhere. Filtering the water and cooling it in the refrigerator makes it tolerable. Better than paying for bottled water.

And if it gets too bad, you just mix some Kool-Aid or Countrytime in there. Disguises it real good. ;-)

Posted by Jennifer at 08:29 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

August 01, 2005

One Weight Lifted...

Well, I have me one of them jobbies lined up for the school year.

Now I just need a place to live.

Posted by Jennifer at 05:43 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack