Spring fever, Homer, Scam emails and other unrelated happenings

Spring has arrived, and I am also 32 days away from graduating from college. The closer I get to finishing, the less motivated I feel to do things that weren’t my idea in the first place. Instead of doing homework over the weekend, I did a lot of outside reading. Most recently, I have read Chinua Achebe’s “Things Fall Apart,” which is fantastic.

I also took the weekend to see how long it would take me to read through a book of the Iliad in Greek. I didn’t read it all in one shot, but it only took me a couple of days to finish it. I remember  being an intro student to Homer, and something like that would take 2/3 of a semester. Now I can read through it in a matter of hours, and I will only get faster as I relearn the vocabulary.

Homer is pretty easy once you master a core vocabulary, since the same words and concepts tend to repeat a lot. I hadn’t dedicated read any Homer for a while, so I had forgotten some of those words. I have moved onto book 2, and will try to have the entire Iliad read in Greek as soon as possible, though realistically probably not until the middle of summer.

Last night, as I was going to bed around 11:30pm, I got an email with a subject: culture. It was a company called “David Publishing” with a journal called “Culture and Religious Studies” or something non-descript like that.  Clearly, they had been surfing through the program lists for SCS and other conferences where I had presented papers, because they mentioned my Thucydides paper, title and all. I fail to see how my paper on counterfactual narrative in Thucydides’ Pylos narrative has anything to do with religious studies, which was curious to me, since it seems pretty irrelevant to most people’s lives unless they study Thucydides.

But the grammar was terrible and the whole thing smelled “phishy.” So I looked it up, like a good scholar, and learned that it was indeed a scam, based in China apparently and bent on extorting money out of young scholars who don’t know any better, or how publications work.

I love scam emails and think they’re hilarious, except for the fact that people do occasionally fall for them and end up losing a LOT of money because they don’t know any better. I’m kind of tempted to send them a dummy version of the paper, and scam them back, until the point that they try to extort $20 per page out of me, which isn’t going to happen.

Other than that, my life continues much as it had before. My Herodotus research still proceeds apace, though it is on the backburner because I have other papers to work on too. One paper is supposed to be a comparison of Horace and Juvenal for a Roman literature class, which I keep procrastinating on. The other thing is Latin prose comp, which is the bane of my existence, since it’s difficult and I almost never spend enough time on it. Alas.

I hope add some more of my further discoveries about Herodotus soon, though probably not today. Possibly tomorrow, since my Thursdays are usually just for doing homework and nothing else.


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