Instructions for Dancing

Monday December 29, 2008

flatlined inhibition

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 6:14 pm


So I went shopping with my Mum today, we went to Birmingham’s Bullring for the sales. It was fun! And busy, omg.  It was lovely to spend some time just the two of us, though; even though we’re both at home all the time at the moment, I’m normally in my room translating dead languages and she’s normally everywhere else doing… everything else. Today we had lots of time to chat, which was unusual and nice.

She also told me all about family/BT warfare that I missed while away last term: basically, we had some builders in who accidentally cut like, a metre out of our phoneline, and Mum was trying to get BT to come and help us out. Right now it’s still not been fixed, and this is largely down to their firm belief that the problem is at their centre and not at um, the massive new gap in our cable. My mother told them this lots of times, she says. “I called them, I wrote them emails, I left rude messages on their website.” Mum’s never used a swearword in her life, so this image of Mum As BT Internet Hooligan totally amused me. <3

So yeah, tonight I have all my work to catch up on and our epic game of Settlers to finish. And Mat’s coming tomorrow! Question is, do I wear my new purple jeans or my new red ones? I am not kidding, they are best ever. I had to queue for twenty minutes, (thanks Next,) but I do not care because they are cool. I also got caramel and gingerbread coffee syrups from Whittard’s (eeee) and new wall /daily desk calendars. I’m a happy girl. Again.

Sunday December 28, 2008

good morrow good mother

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 3:18 pm

Eurgh. ow. thanks a lot, body.

sleeping problem fixed, sicky problem returning. I skipped church this morning, and having got up only an hour ago I’d love to go back to bed right now. but I’m expecting Susannah and Paul at any time, so there you go. Maybe later.

I’ll listen to Iolanthe and translate stuff in the meantime, I guess.

2am edit: So, I’m all better now. I just finished reading something and realised I’d been grinning for like, the last five minutes, as I still am as I write this. I love my new fandom, and the more I get into it, the stronger my love grows. This is bad for work progression because the LJ network is like effing wikipedia, every page you find links to at least two others you genuinely want to read. I have read more new fic in the last week than I probably have for the rest of the year, and all are the level of so incredibly good that I can’t concentrate on other things until I finish each one. I still have two chapters of Petronius to translate tonight but. I just don’t care. I’m like a little girl in a sweetshop.

Saturday December 27, 2008

roll on to something good

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 4:27 pm

Four legsh good, two hoursh shleep bad.

I was ill and in bed until 7pm yesterday, which made my already stupid sleeping pattern the most dysfunctional it’s ever been. I got to sleep at 8am.

But I had a good time inbetween, ahah, listening to old tapes of Dad’s Army (know them backwards, still love them) and reading my old notebook diaries. They were from 2003, and I hadn’t realised quite how much I’d changed since then. Not just in writing style, though definitely that too: o heady times of persistent ‘lol’s used in non-ironic fashion! But this was when I was at school only part-time and my life was full of so much freedom to discover what I wanted to use it for: fretting about grade 7 violin, playing Go every lunchtime with Sharl and Beka and developing ways to deal with the bitchy, homogenous girls on my schoolbus and in my class that I couldn’t escape. It was also the time that I was learning HTML and reading Hikaru no Go for the first time (!) and considering GCSE Greek and getting excited about music that spoke to me in ways I’d never known before. Perhaps that year more than ever was when I started growing into the person I am now, and it was nice to revisit it from the safety of diaries in 2008. Now I need to burn them before they fall into enemy hands.

In the same vein, I found a rather cool site the other day that I’m considering giving a try. It’s called, and the idea is that you write yourself an letter that will then be emailed to you sometime in the future, whenever you like. It’s an e-time capsule, basically. And it offers something different from old blogs or diary entries, because you’ve only got yourself as an audience, and you’ve got the chance to evaluate properly. I doubt that anyone reading my entries here, whether they knew me in real life or not, would draw the same conclusions about me as I would myself – what my values, interests and priorities are right now, and how they’re playing out for me. Otoh, there’s nothing to say that my opinion’s the right one. But my entries here are just passing thoughts, often outside my normals ones, and they’re never deeply personal. It’s interesting to get the chance to write something different.

Anyway. I still have some work to do this afternoon, as we want to get another run at Settlers tonight. It’s a rather addictive game, and we were given an expansion pack for Christmas with barbarians and PIRATES in, yay, so we have lots more to learn. My life is uncool like woah and I really love it. There’s something that never changes.

Friday December 26, 2008

so glide away on soapy heels

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 2:07 am

I’ve been reconsidering my perceptions of God recently.

Firstly, I stupidly realised that I’ve been calling God a He all my life without any good reason to. that’s not a problem of itself (whining about patriarchal societies aside), but all my life it’s also affected the way I think about our relationship, and that’s not okay. Language is so, so powerful, and I realise now that I’ve always felt that bit more distant from God because of the very human gender I’ve imagined him to have. And it’s not like that at all; giving God a gender and a set of gender-based expectations is completely meaningless. But it’s just when I imagine thinking of God as a she, as a mother (and why not?) that I realise how much importance I’ve always placed on a pronoun and a status, father not mother. It doesn’t mean he’s any less close to me, but maybe I need to start changing some pronouns to prove that to myself.

Secondly, a friend brought something up the other day about God’s sense of humour. She said that she’d had to spend a lot of time with this guy that she found really irritating and difficult to deal with; not for any real reason, just because they didn’t really ‘get’ each other. She’d spent a lot of time complaining and venting about him. Then this guy did something really lovely for her, completely out of the blue and without any ulterior motive.

Life is wonderfully funny sometimes, and I find it so comforting to think that God gets the jokes too, that he throws them at us for a reason. And why not? If He – She – is perfect, she’s got to have a sense of humour.

Anyway. Um, happy Christmas, I really hope you had a good day. Mine wasn’t at all bad, actually, but now I’ve another late night trying to get a bit more work done. Busy!

edit: speaking of okay religious humour, Rowan Atkinson on Jesus.

Wednesday December 24, 2008

if a door be closed

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 2:00 am

Two cool things about two groups I’m getting into.

1) Panic at the Disco: these guys are awesome, and I don’t mind their music either. “During Panic’s opening song […] an unknown audience member threw a bottle at the stage, which struck and temporarily knocked out [frontman] Brendon Urie, forcing the band to stop playing. After some minutes, he got back up and shouted to the crowd, “You can’t take me out! Let’s see how well you guys do with my left side”, and continued with the same song.” [source]

2) Indigo Girls: there are a number of things in this interview that really appeal to me; perhaps it’s obvious which. Both women come out as decent, insightful and well-spoken, and although that’s not necessary for good musicians, it makes it nicer.

I spoke to Matt tonight for the first time for one and a half weeks, ish. It was lovely to hear his voice again, to remember who I have waiting for me. We are in a place right now that I really love and that makes me really happy; I feel his absence, but I’m okay about it. I’m independent and in love. Seeing him again will make me very happy, but when I can’t I can do happy for myself. What could be better than that?

Work has gone very badly today, but I’ve sorted all Christmas presents and made truffles for Mum, Dad, x2 grandfathers and our cleaner, and had a productive trio practice with Susannah and Lizza. There aren’t enough hours in the day for Moar Stuff.

Sunday December 21, 2008

for you to notice.

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 2:46 am


O you chorus of indolent reviewers,
Irresponsible, indolent reviewers,
Look, I come to the test, a tiny poem
All composed in a metre of Catullus…

This is the best metre ever. It’s called Hendecasyllabics (hendeca- being ‘eleven’ in Greek), and the rhythm it creates is fantastic: dum dum dum diddy dum di dum di dum dum.  Speak it out loud and then to this poem and you’ll see how cool it is. DB pointed it out in some Catullus we translated the other week, and for some reason I was thinking about that just now. This metre (along with another I once heard in a recitation of a choral ode from the Bacchae) is why texts meant to be spoken should be spoken. I love it when verse comes alive.

edit: 4am and I think it’s time to ditch today’s Petronius. I’ve done all the rest, though, and I also realised that I do like translating Thyestes occasionally, it’s just slow. But hey, it’s profound in places, giving occasional rewards for good behaviour. illi mors gravis incubat / qui notus nimis omnibus / ignotus moritur sibi.

Saturday December 20, 2008

it’s a mess, it’s a start

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 12:13 am

Ahah, so, it’s time for a change. I’m not quite sure what yet, but I have this LJ account that I’ve not posted in for years.  I’ve privatised all of the entries from the time that it used to be my real-life blog. But I’ve been having fun chat with Tesh all day about LJ and new fandoms and suchlike and I’m really considering an LJ/fannish delurk. It turns out we’ve been 2 degrees of LJ separation away from each other for a long time, and I’d like to remove that and finally seize the chance to have an RL friend with the same fannish interests.

But I need to think about that, because I know from my experience and others that RL and fandom do not and should not ever be combined. And I have a lot of RL people casually friended on LJ. I don’t want to have to friendslock everything. I don’t like the idea of starting a new account either.

Indecision aside, It’s been a nice day from that perspective; odd and fun to discover that the world’s not as big as you think. I mentioned a fic to Tesh from a writer I really admire and kindof fangirl and her reaction was ‘Oh, she’s a good friend, I just told her you liked her writing and she was really pleased’. It’d be nice to do that for myself. Maybe I can. ANYWAY. Translation time!

Friday December 19, 2008

we’ll shine together

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 1:39 am

Heee, I’m feeling unsleepy (and um, still have masses of work to do) and had a lovely dinner with friends at Flagstaff, so I’m up trying to translate Lucan at the same time as listening to the cheesiest music I have on my computer. Disappointingly, that’s not so much, Mamma Mia soundtrack excepted, so I’m searching for more. I get these moods very rarely, so I may as well indulge them. My Lastfm playlist has been turned off for the evening.

Not much is happening right now, just lots of work and the occasional fun social time with friends, so I haven’t been blogging much. It feels like a long time since I got home from Cambridge, but it was only this time last week. I’ve translated a lot of Aristophanes, Euripides, Lucan, Petronius and Seneca since then.

In other news, I’ve just found a McFly cover of Umbrella. Yay!

Friday December 12, 2008

the rhetoric and treason of saying

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 11:45 pm

I’m home. Like, really home. This does feel like really-home, at least; I love my room in Cambridge too, and I shall miss it, but coming home to rediscover my family and old friends is a joy I’d forgotten about.

And it is a joy, right now. We received lovely news a few days ago, and for that reason things are happier here they have been for quite a while – Sam’s slowly moving back onto normal, less restricted foodtimes. Still not too many milk products, his doctor says, but he can reintroduce wheat and sugar, and that’s going to change everything. He can eat Christmas dinner with us; we can make truffles together for our grandparents; I can fill the house with smells of things baked with wheat-flour without feeling like a mean sister. We can have takeaways. This afternoon we went to Tesco together and bought bread, lots of bread. It sounds small and ridiculous, but to him it is massive and for us it is lifechanging, and I haven’t seen him this happy for a very long time. I am so very glad today.

Anyway, I got back yesterday. I’m tired, but choir week went fairly smoothly after the bad performances of Saturday. We had two days’ successful recording in Cambridge (though received no more news of when our last year’s record might be coming out, alas) and then two more concerts in London. One was in the National Portrait Gallery, which was exhausting but refreshing in its unusualness: we did four 20-minute sets of background music in different areas around the gallery, singing carols for a posh business party. It was a pretty important event and we were sightreading a lot of stuff, which made a difficult combination, but in the end it was rather enjoyable and the bigwigs seemed to like us. Hurrah.

Anyway. I organised myself last night and discovered that the timetable of work I have to do this holiday is a little brutal. I still have a few hours of work to do, so I’m going to start on that now. Not too many complaints about that, though; busy is good. If I get time I’ll install paintshop pro x2 (yayy) and watch Little Dorrit too. A quiet, unexciting life is a very underrated possession.

Saturday December 6, 2008

all that you gave me

Filed under: Uncategorized — by hettyweston @ 11:14 pm

What do you do when you fuck up?

I fucked up this evening. I spent the rest of the concert sitting in my seat, head down, hands folded, trying not to burst into tears before I could get back to the protection of my own room. In the coming days I will see again all those people who attended that concert and saw me in the most humiliating moments of my recent life and I’ll have to deal with the fact that I truly failed at something. I can’t remember the last time.

But, you know, I didn’t cry. I apologised to Dave, I made a dignified exit, and I came back here and melted down quietly in private. Tomorrow I’ll be able to pick myself up again, sing all day, and I hope that when I dare to look back on this evening, I’ll be able to remember the shreds of bravery I clung onto.

Dad came to pick up most of my stuff today. Mat left for home. And I’ll be staying here until Thursday, like a ghost in this bare, quiet room so full of memories and stray dark hairs. Right now I have a few sad, lonely days ahead of me. But I’m going to try to cling onto that bravery, and to find some meaning in that attempt. In the meantime, in my sadness, I will be praying. And drying my eyes.

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