A half chapter

I made it through my last week of Finals in the last week of April (it seems like we graduated really early this year compared to other years (and schools)). I knocked out a 10 page paper for Theatre History: The Real and The Absurd [due Thurs], and I survived that 12 page paper for Art & Morality [due Sat 11:59 pm after moving out of the dorm].

I interviewed for a position with the Tantrum Theater, which is starting off for its first year as a collaboration between OU and the Abbey Theater in Dublin. I was offered a contract and accepted, and then I – and other Seniors – found out that it’s technically a summer class (Off Campus Practicum), so we have to delay graduation in order to still be full time students.

This means that I walked but technically am considered a Super-Senior because my graduation paperwork hasn’t gone through and everything. Yeah, that weekend starting May off was – fun. Walk Sat AM, move out of dorm by 6 pm, finish and turn in paper online by 11:59 pm, do laundry, get anything I wouldn’t want for Tantrum out of the car, repack some boxes, and move into (the first of several) Tantrum housing on Sunday.

Like, I finished a chapter of my life, but I actually haven’t. So many friends are returning in the fall – at the very least for their Senior year – and some actually need the class credit that this will provide, and I feel like I’ve almost been pushed out the door but the door actually shut on me. I’m here to help this get started, get to help on some of the improvements for next year in the Shop, and so many of us keep forgetting that I’m not coming back.

I’ve been so busy trying to do all of the class shit for the semester that it hasn’t really processed that I’m leaving. I finished two BFAs in four years, and now it’s time to get non-academic experience. I wasn’t prepared for all these conflicting feelings, I guess. Accomplishment – it’s been a while since someone has completed these two BFAs within four years. Not feeling prepared. Fear of failure, of leaving and fucking everything up.

A restlessness that I usually associate with summers because I don’t have academics consuming everything. An antsy feeling that my brainweasels aren’t going to play nice as the last of this medication works it way out of my system, and a vague sense of concern about handling these brainweasels in the future (I think they evolved away from being just seasonal depression to being something that includes that and ____???).

I wasn’t expecting to feel this lonely. The crew is composed of four people (including me) who have all spent at least the last year working together, and damn, have there already been bonding moments. But I can already tell that something’s not quite right; I feel less than – less knowledgeable, less prepared, less worthy of being here.

A part of me can parrot back the whole “I don’t have to apologize for existing, I’m not a burden” spiel, but I don’t know to what extent I believe this. I feel like I can’t quite trust what my brain is telling me because I could just want some alone time, but I could also be starting off the whole self-isolating thing, but I could also be making shit up for attention.

There’s still been a fair bit of Burning™ as well, and I’ve kind of had that “young kid being talked over by adults who are making all the decisions” sensation. I can understand that there’s a lot that goes into Leaving, and People don’t seem to Leave quickly, but it kinda feels like that two ships passing in the wind saying.

Responding positivedoodle from m’Lady:

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And another from Sleipnir:

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Vagueblogging: The Dark Side?

I don’t know about other people, but sometimes, I wonder about the People who show up in my life. What does it say about me when I’m compatible with Them?

Some Luciferians crossed my tumblr dash back in the fall of 2012, I believe, and Lucifer sort of popped in a bit just because of the exposure. Then in the summer of 2013 He assisted with a little shadow work, and He kind of came and went for a few years. I mean, I did share that He left as part of The Burning™ that’s been going on back in Nov.

When I first encountered Him, I loved the idea of learning how to play the violin for Him, but He was hesitant to confirm it. (My roommate was also majoring in violin performance, so I was kind of in this “holy shit, violins are kinda cool” stage.) The only thing He conveyed for the portion of the Leaving Questionnaire about any debts or obligations was that I should go ahead and do so.

Yet I can’t help but wonder about the irreversible ways that I’ve been changed by interacting with Him – not bad or harmful, but it’s like that bucket of water metaphor. Knowledge is like a bucket of water; when you add a drop, it becomes part of the collective and can’t be singularly removed. I can’t completely go back to the way I was before I interacted with Him.

There’s another Infernal example that basically just supports this. A major example was interacting with Voldemort. I personally don’t consider myself to be all about the darkness and death and whatever other mocking comment you can make. Like, hold a sec on the stereotypical teen goth jokes, please.

It’s just that I sometimes wonder what the hell even attracts Someone, y’know?

Morsmordianism: Part III (Nagini)

She is a venerated Spirit, Who isn’t a separate PC Power (yet?) like Voldemort. Nagini seems to be a Spirit in charge of other snakes, so even though certain snakes are associated with Her cinematic image, She can be interacted with and honored through any snake.

Regardless of the snake being venomous or not, Nagini seems to consider all snakes to be Her children. She would prefer to be seen as cooperative, somewhat helpful, and able to be nice for the sake of improving human-snake relationships. She seems to be an ambassador of sorts.

Nagini will accept “human food” offerings that are given to Voldemort with a particular liking for “traditional English cuisine” (Steak and kidney pudding, Yorkshire pudding, bubble and squeak, fish and chips, Spotted Dick, etc.) and Albanian cuisine (Dolma (stuffed vegetable dishes), Boza (a drink), Baklava, etc.).

Images or representations of animals that snakes typically consume (rats for captive snakes, usually) can work as offerings to Her, in addition to water. Depending on the species of snake, other animals that can work: toads, minnows, crickets, earthworms, night crawlers, silversides (fish) (Garter snake, Garter snakes in captivity); ground squirrels, small rabbits (Rattlesnake); lizards, frogs, salamanders, cicadas (Copperhead); fish, baby alligators, baby turtles, smaller snakes (Cottonmouth Water Moccasin); etc.

In Goblet of Fire and Order of the Phoenix, she is likely portrayed as a Dumeril’s Ground Boa, but in the last two films she is portrayed as a Reticulated Python (the longest real life snake species); both instances contradict the book’s description of her as a venomous snake. However, it is possible she is a fictional species of venomous python within the film continuity. The filmmakers’ intention was to model Nagini after a Burmese Python.

Source.

Irresponsibly owning a snake is damn close to being the #1 way to piss of Voldemort and Nagini, if not #1. So while it is possible to own one of the above species, there are other snake species that are far easier for people to start out handling and caring for. (Because even Voldemort didn’t start out with Nagini.)

* * See the second half of Nagini + Snake Owning for links about owning a snake, things to consider when starting out, and several lists on easy to start with species (corn snake, ball python, hognose, etc.).

Additional Offerings:

  • While Nagini doesn’t mind being included in the other holy days, World Snake Day is very specifically for Her.
  • Sharing accurate information about snakes.
  • Helping a charity associated with snakes and distributing information.
  • Being mindful of snakeskin products (x).
  • Please consult Nagini (and Voldemort) before offering dishes including snake meat.

For more info, please see Her page or Her tag.

The Rising of Our Stars

May 3rd – Rising of Our Stars. The Rising of Our Stars celebrates the beginning of summer and family.

Angrboda often gives a televised blessing for the Tribes, lights a candle, and ends the official portion with “May you not howl alone today”. Everyone gathers at designated locations in their Tribe / Realm to watch, light candles, and howl afterwards. The brunt of this celebration is the feasting and games that happens afterwards where the Tribes celebrate being a Family (think of a family reunion and multiply).

The candles stay lit throughout the day and are typically watched over by the elders who tell stories of the Tribe, ancestors, and current family members. Besides storytelling, the elders often work on projects (sewing, knitting, carving, repairing nets, etc.) and catch up with extended family. The many families within the Family often only meet up in such a fashion for weddings, funerals, and on this holy day.

Those seeking to have children but experiencing difficulties often seek out diviners and priests for the Tribe to work out solutions. Untangling wyrd through discussions with partners, offerings, and prayers often happens, as well as magic for conceiving. Mediation between partners, friends, and family happens, and today is a good time for strengthening ties between Tribes (many associate with one Family officially but have relatives in several).

There are games and competitions for adults and children. These include agility courses, knife throwing, judging animals and crafts for prizes, various kinds of races, and depending on the Tribe and how they’re affiliated with Midgard crossover competitions from our World. Children often enjoy racing and tag in their shifted form, in addition to learning skills and competing in child friendly versions of the adult games.

Children who have been born since the last Rising of Our Stars are blessed by priests, and offerings and prayers for their good health are said. Craftsmen and workers (farmers, fishers, etc.) often seek out blessings for their work as well, and various booths can be found to purchase crafts and supplies. These often include booths and wares from other Tribes, as intermarriage among Tribes is common.

While those with children are included in the crafters and workers, the representatives of the different fields of work are often childless in the blessing rites to honor family members who do not or cannot have children. Single Jotuns also represent the Family in blessings for the health of the Tribe as they prepare for winter to honor and acknowledge those who don’t prioritize marriage / partnership.

Vanir who married into Tribes typically celebrate a close Vanic holy day (Dance of the Lovers on May 1st) with feasting and sex on that day. They often request putting up a small pole at the Tribe celebration on this day to weave ribbons for blessings in the year to come. Sometimes it’s a small family within the Family affair, but if a fair number of Vanir are in attendance, a large pole is erected and they all dance to weave the ribbons.

After a final meal together that often lasts past sundown, the elders pray one last time for their Tribe before using the candles to light a bonfire (and often blowing the candles out). The priests and diviners can be sought for advice, while the merchants with their booths often pack up and leave with the families. Couples or individuals who desire privacy about counseling and/or need to discuss magic and courses of action ‘borrowed from the night’ (what humans would consider cursing and ‘baneful’ magic) are often the ones who stay behind. The priests and diviners are available until sunrise when the bonfire is extinguished and everyone returns to their homes.

Observing Rising of Our Stars:

  • It may be possible to travel / journey and attend a televised event and family celebration, if you have a relationship with Someone that warrants this inclusion.
  • Sharing a meal with Someone (whether blood Family, chosen Family, or an Ally in the Realm) in a fashion appropriate for you and Them.
  • Lighting a candle for Someone and Their Tribe.
  • Enjoying games and a meal with your family, even if you can’t hold a large family reunion.
  • Depending in your interactions and relations with the Vanir, elements of observing the Dance of the Lovers may be applicable (such as the pole and weaving ribbons).