Flying the Coop…

After a day of

blah blah

Meetings…my least favorite part of my new work role.  At least one of the three today could have been handled by an email.  But no matter…in 32 minutes I will go to my last class meeting of the 1st summer term and in 122 minutes I am getting the h@#! out of Dodge for a couple of days.  My bestie is picking me up and whisking me away to Milwaukee


We could go sailing, we could go to the art museum or maybe to Summerfest (it’s Linkin Park tonight and Ed Sheeran on Friday)  There is a ton of stuff to do and see in Milwaukee in the summer.  Us?  Despite what my husband has cooked up in his fantasy version, we are not usually living large out on the town – actually, I think we might be sorting clothes for donation.  I’m thrilled…for two whole days, I only have to worry about me, myself and I…sounds like Shangrila at the moment!

I’ll be back on Friday when I will get down to business on some serious blogging (Right after I pack Mini Me off to church camp (Comic Con themed) for the week)  Toodle loo!

It’s SaturnRAlia!

Congratulations go to Richard Armitage for taking home the Saturn Award for Best Supporting actor for Thorin Oakenshield…go you!!  Of course, I would be remiss if I did not attempt to work those fabulous στέφανος/corona (foliage wreath) shots into the Classical corpus.  My first effort was pretty obvious…Saturn Award…planetary trophy…planet named after Roman deity:

saturn wreathed

There we go…not a bad connection.  Saturn appears as the god of Time (identified with the Greek Kronos) here on detail from a larger mosaic depicting “seasonal” deities.  As you can see, he’s nicely crown with what appears to be a laurel (bay) wreath.  It works ok…Richard Armitage certainly seems to be pretty successful at “time” management in a number of senses…certainly in terms of scheduling and youthfulness.  I was going to go into more detail on Saturn, a kind of lesser known deity…UNTIL…

armitage as dionysus

This one took me exactly one place immediately…right back to the Villa of the Mysteries at Pompeii and an amazing frescoed room featuring the figure of Dionysus wreathed and laid out across the lap of a disputed female figure…

dionysus villa mysteris

Love, Love, Love this…Dioynus, thrysus across his lap, has simply had it – as he sprawls bonelessly back, his mouth slack, his foliage wreath slipping.  (I especially love the detail of his right foot…somewhere along the line, his sandal slipped off and is now hanging out of sight from the strap around his ankle.)  In the photo above, Richard Armitage…wreath askew, award in hand,  is comically feigning exhaustion, eyes shut, mouth open, as he slumps in his chair next to the half finished dessert and empty glasses that testify to the end of an evening of revelry.

Love this too!  Well played sir!!

Let the SaturnRAlia festivities continue!!!


OT: Green

It's all green to me...

It’s all green to me…

Prasinus, χλοερός, celedon, spruce, mint, pine, grass, moss, etcetera ad infinitum.  Everywhere I look is green.

Rain Kissed Leaves...also the name of my favorite scent...coincidence?

Rain Kissed Leaves…also the name of my favorite scent…coincidence?

As I walk out my back door, I spy the weeds currently growing like…well, weeds…where my garden should be, the day starts out green.  My commute to campus takes me through an absolutely gorgeous section of rolling hilled farmland in east central Wisconsin…lake out one side of the car, a verdant patchwork of cultivated fields and leafy woodlands out the other.  Even in this morning’s biblical style deluge, I was struck by the lush spectrum of greens all around me.  I would have stopped for a picture, but for the pouring rain.

I usually love to drive…I especially like the road less travelled.  Armed with a compass, I’m a pretty intrepid driver (unless it’s in some kind of contemporary housing development…I’ve found my way across unmarked roads in foreign lands, but nothing is as direction defying as an American cul-de-sac laden trap…all roads lead to nowhere!).  Since I injured my shoulder…bicep tendonitis they say…a lot of things are uncomfortable.  Driving is one of them…but drive I must since particle transfer is not yet perfected and there’s no southbound train to carry me to work.

Achy shoulder aside, driving today was simply a pleasure as I allowed myself to really see the full blown green glory of summer…wpid-received_102037334260508662.jpg.jpeg

The camera on my phone can’t really capture the full depth of the verdency, but I think you get the idea.  Add in a brisk breeze and all that green was animated…it really was invigorating.  (I have to admit…all of the cultivated green is facilitated by fresh fertilizer, and in the steamy late afternoon, the aroma was slightly less refreshing than one might expect!)  

There are days when I wish I was anywhere else but here, but on days like today, I wouldn’t trade it for the world…no wonder there’s always a steady migration from the immediate south every summer…



Moving right along: Blog Introspection Challenge 5,6,7…


Been crazier Crazytown than usual in these parts…I keep saying things are going to calm down and than WHAM!  something new hits the fan.  The crazy eats up my thinking bits, but the least I can do is check in with my latest instrospections…

#5  Which post go the most views?

Consistently, day after day, month after month, etcetera, the page view leader is this one


‘back in the day (can I just mention here how much I hate it when students use that phrase to describe happenings in the “BC times”  ??)  Where was I…right…’back in the day, I used to be able to see where people were visiting from and what posts they were visiting.  Through mid last year, I noticed that I was getting a high number of hits from college and university servers…guess where they were headed?  Yep…college students around the globe were tapping into my “in depth” discussion of Richard Armitage and the classical sculptural canons.  The day I see this post show up as a reference on a paper that I assigned, my head will officially explode!     🙂

#6  Which post continues to give?

It has to be Semper ubi sub ubi Richard Armitage.  It cracks my s#!t up every time I see someone has viewed it…I was just thinking about it Tuesday when I actually uttered SUBLIGACULUM in class!  (and it was even in context!!)

#7 Which post got the most comments?

Definitely this one by far


82 comments on why SPANX can harsh a fan fic writer’s smexy groove.  This is a strong sign that I really need to write that John Porter SPANX spoof…Recovery is in need of an epilogue 🙂

Cruisin’ up on half way through – *snap*


One of my favorite things

Slowly but surely working my way through the Blogging Introspection Challenge (would progress faster if my RL would desist in going pear shaped every other day!)

Question #4:  What’s your favourite post?

It only took me a minute before I settled on This One

favorite postIt marked my first foray into photo edits…evidenced by the fact that I forgot to take out the squiggles (exacerbated by the fact I was doing it at approximately 2am…)  Ahhh, the “good old days!”


Must fly…Showbiz is waiting impatiently in the car for me…

“ευτηχισμένη επέτειος” or “felicem diem anniversarium” Armitageworld

I had a brainstorm a while back and today seems to the perfect day to officially unveil it:

Today is my wedding anniversary…

anniversary blurred

Sixteen years and counting…if you’re doing the math, you’ll have worked out that Showbiz was a guest at the nuptial festivities in 1999.  (Scandalous!!)   My phone has been buzzing all day with Facebook alerts with well wishes from friends and family.

Interestingly enough, tomorrow is my “Armitage Discovery” anniversary…the day I first watched North & South and jumped onto the hook.  This seems to be the perfect segue into a little project I’ve been thinking about.  As much as I enjoy receiving congratulations on life events, I also enjoy extending them to others, but I often don’t know about the milestone dates for people in the Armitageworld community until they have already past.  I have a couple of issues with just asking outright:  1.  I don’t want to seem to be probing people for information and 2.  I’m positive I will miss someone.

I love the annual celebration of August 22, and since each and everyone of us also has at least one date of note,  I thought it might be fun to start an Armitageworld Community Calendar where those who are inclined can share their important dates (Real life birthday, or Armitageword dates like “Discovery,” Blogiversary, “delurking” etc.) and bask in the well wishes of fellow fans.  To that end, I’ve taken the liberty of setting one up as a page here at Ancient Armitage:

It's a bit sparse at the moment...

It’s a bit sparse at the moment…

Interested parties can either reply with their dates in the page comments or email me at:

I (with the gracious assistance of Guylty) will enter the dates on the calendar.  Once there are more than my dates (I have my *me-me-me* moments, but I won’t get carried away 🙂  ) I will publish a weekly listing of who’s celebrating what for that week and people can comment here or take well wishes directly to the individuals via blogs, Tumblrs, email, etc.   You can reach the new page by clicking on “Community Calendar”

What's this called?  The "header"  ??

What’s this called? The “header” ??

I thought this might be a fun little side activity…my hope is that I won’t be picking shrapnel from my forehead in short order.


It’s the most wonderful time of the year Richard Armitage…


No, no, no…not THAT  “wonderful time.”  It’s the wonderful time of the year when my Topics in Ancient History class gives their presentations on Pompeii and Herculaneum.  As always, the first topics snatched up were those relating to sexuality, brothels and prostitution.  I am currently on a countdown to when the famous Priapus fresco from Pompeii will make an appearance.   For those who have not met him, Priapus was a Roman deity associated with the harvest and fertility whose most marked attribute was his ithyphallic appearance.   The anticipation of running into Priapus and the subsequent student reaction to him is killing me! (my classroom pleasures on this level are few and far between…don’t judge me 😉  )

What makes it even better this term is that thanks to my RL Facebook feed, I can see that Priapus fresco and raise with this little gem…

Priapus de Rivery

Priapus de Rivery – Musee de Picardie, Amiens

This bronze piece, dating to first half of the first century CE,  was found in Rivery France in 1771, and is said to be the earliest known piece of Gallo-Roman art in the Musee de Picardie collection.  Pretty big statistics for such a little guy.  I’ve blown him up here to show his details.  (although I can’t find his actual dimensions, looking at images of him in situ in the museum case, I’d say he’s about 8-10″ (20-25cm) in height.)   Here Priapus is depicted wrapped up in a cucullus…a cloak with a hood of a variety that is apparently typical of Gaul (modern France).  I love the beautiful bits of patina on the piece and especially the detailed treatment of his feet and footwear.  (I have a thing for tiny bronze toes).  But speaking of his details, one seems to be noticeably absent doesn’t it?   A certain ithyphallic element seems to be missing.  Or is it…

priapus 2

Au contraire!  This Priapus doesn’t have a phallus…he IS a phallus.  Always models of efficiency, this Roman sculptor made a kind of two-in-one piece!  I know that I should look at this with the appropriate level of scholarly seriousness, but honestly…this amazing running phallus immediately calls to mind a fine summer tradition in Wisconsin –

The Klement's Sausage Races at Milwaukee's Miller Park

The Klement’s Sausage Races at Milwaukee’s Miller Park

*wiping tears of hilarity*  Ahem, yes.  Sorry.  Scholarly seeking of Richard Armitage in the Classical Tradition…right.   Thanks to today’s image from Pilgrimage, I have fresh material to work with…

priapus compare

The intense gaze, the Gallic garments, the “pointy” imagery of the heads…the mind does wander as to what’s under that hauberk.

All in a day’s work people, all in a day’s work   🙂

My Happy Place

Once upon a time Armitageworld was my happy place.  A place to while away some time chatting about RA…sometimes participating in more serious discussions sometimes just being silly.  The past year or so though, it seems as if there is one existential battle after another as the population and boundaries of the fandom shift.  This has led to some soul searching on my part. 

Just as I know that there are people and places which I avoid in real life, I know for a fact that there are places within the fandom that I have no desire to be part of.   I don’t expect that these places are likely, by some feat of magic…or words of Richard Armitage, to become more palatable to me, so I stay away.  If that means I miss “first run” news, so be it – if I’ve learned anything in my nearly three year residence it’s that the majority of “news” is plastered from one end of the land to the other incredibly quickly, so I’m never in the dark for long.

Basically, I decided a while ago that to keep my happy place happy for me, I’d simply need to stay away from certain  “neighborhoods” whose Armitageworld view differed widely from mine.  Mostly it works for me.

Right now, my happy place is really important to me, as my real life is in a seemingly constant cycle of struggle and pain interspersed by anxiety and fear.  I need the happy place to be a happy place and part of that is maintaining, at least in part, my personal interpretation of Richard Armitage…a fact that has been shown in sharp relief as the dust settles from latest existential episode.

Just to be clear…I don’t believe that Richard Armitage is a saint or even a perfect human…( Frankly, I don’t believe that such a creature exists –  we are all flawed in some way or another.) or that he has an infallible moral compass.

I do believe that he’s fully capable of hearing that not everyone loved his latest selfie without deleting his Twitter account in a pique and taking to his bed in despair.  I also do believe that he desires to do good in general, but that sometimes he misspeaks or doesn’t fully comprehend the potential impact of what he says.

I value and support everyone’s right to express their thoughts on the most recent interviews, but having read them, I’ve decided that none of the contents fundamentally alter the interpretation that fuels my happy place.

I may be wrong, and the future might show cracks in my foundations, but for now my happy place is standing and providing me some needed shelter from the storms in my daily life.

Modus Operandi Obscurae…


Here I am, bringing up the rear again…it’s like 6th grade gym class all over again  😉

The third question on the 15 Day Blog Introspection Challenge is to describe one’s usual blogging process.  Hmmm.  From a logistical standpoint, it’s fairly consistent – I blog directly into the WordPress textbox in the “Visual” mode.  This is harder or easier depending on the device I’m using – easiest on a PC, hardest on the iPad – yep, actually easier on my Android phone – something about WP and iPad is not sympatico, but I’ve made them all work in a pinch.  I think I’ve only had to re-create one mostly complete post from scratch since I’ve been pretty luck with the auto-save function.

I’m not a big draft writer.  Sometimes I draft a title as a reminder of a topic, but I just checked, and there is currently nothing kicking around in the “Drafts” tab.  That’s not to say there’s nothing in various stages of completion that I haven’t applied to text yet…(ie, it’s kicking around in my head, waiting for clarity or opportunity to present itself)  I generally write a post over a period of a few minutes to a few hours, edit it, publish it, curse at the missed typos, edit it again and update.  (I almost never post date publication because I’m totally paranoid that it won’t work.)

As far as what leads me to a particular topic?  That is a varied and sundry thing.  Sometimes I have a piece of artwork in mind that leads me to a comparison to Richard Armitage..


Sometimes I see an image of Richard Armitage and “eureka!!”

It’s a little different process for each of the different post variation.  ὅ παῖς καλός posts are celebrations of the physical beauty of the man and his component parts, while the Roman Virtues series began as a reflection on a level of GRAVITAS that I perceived…and generally expands when I’m struck by some behavior or action by Richard Armitage that connects me back to the virtues.  Sometimes something completely random strikes me Armitag-y.  Sometimes I have a thought in the car on my commute, sometimes I have an unexpectedly sweet dream…

I don’t really plan a whole lot.  Usually, posts happen pretty organically.  In fact, every time I try to implement some kind of structure, something wonky happens that derails it –like the time I rushed to post a news tidbit that inadvertently displayed my university email address on it…oops –  and I revert to a more or less natural flow of ideas.  I kind of like it that way…I find that if I try to plan too much, the whole thing feels forced, and I’d far prefer sporadic spontaneity to scheduled stiffness.  (sorry…I did it again!!).

I’m not sure if that is exactly the answer that I was going for, but, that’s my “organic” response (and it’s 10:30pm and I have an hour commute home on deck…) so I’m going with the flow.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it 🙂