Optimisticly Depressed

This Blog Will Not Help

I only take one class total for my senior year of high school. I no longer have my nanny job. (Grandma can do the same thing only probably better, and she isn’t asking to get paid for it.) I don’t read much anymore, I sleep a ton, and I can barely think coherently. I let my parents know that they need to get a basement. In other words, I’m a loser.

Depression sucks on so many levels.

Not only am I a loser, but I cannot stop my brain for beating myself up about it. I feel guilty about things that are by not my fault. I over think everything and find a negative meaning to most remarks. My communication skills have gone down so low that “sucks” is the best word I can think of to describe most things in my life.

Recently, I was basically told to stay…

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Medusa

Have you ever heard any music by Heather Dale? I came across her by accident, but I was very glad I did. Of the few songs I’ve heard by her, most of them are about myths, legends, or fairy tales, and some of those look deeply into the characters and their stories. Since I have always loved myths, legends, and fairy tales, and that Celtic-y sound of music, with fiddles and everything, I really liked a few of her songs.

One song that particularly struck me, with its deeper look into a widely known myth, was Medusa. I don’t know much about poetry and music, but the song is thought-provoking, and I wanted to write about it.  Know that I don’t own the song or the lyrics, which are included below.

“Mother would tell me I was a pretty girl

Then she would cry all night

Nobody thinks that really they’re being cruel

When they suggest that I should try to look like them

As if God loved the pretty ones best

Damn ’em all – I create my own perfection

Damn ’em all in the face of their rejection

Damn ’em all – well this dog will have its day

My garden’s full of pretty men who couldn’t stay away

Notice the ones who all like to criticize

Are the ones trying to hide

Why would I sell my soul to be one of them

Better to love the me within behind the skin

I choose to be a goddess inside

Damn ’em all – I create my own perfection

Damn ’em all in the face of their rejection

Damn ’em all – well this dog will have its day

My garden’s full of pretty men who couldn’t stay away

Damn ’em all – I create my own perfection

Damn ’em all in the face of their rejection

Damn ’em all – well this dog will have its day

My garden’s full of pretty men who couldn’t stay away

Damn ’em all!”

Most likely, you have heard one of the variations of the story of Medusa. In some, she’s living on a remote island with her two Gorgon sisters, and she’s the only mortal sister, and also the only one who can turn people to stone with her eyes. She’s a monster for Perseus to slay.

In a longer version of the myth, she was once an extremely beautiful priestess of Athena, one of the virgin goddesses, sworn to purity and virginity forever so she could serve Athena. As the story goes, Poseidon, god of the sea, saw how beautiful she was. Medusa refused to be his lover, so he attacked her, while in Athena’s temple.

Athena was extremely angry about the sacrilege and disrespect done to her and her temple, so she punished Medusa. (This seems extremely unreasonable to me– Athena, my favorite Greek goddess, and the goddess of wisdom, punishes Medusa for being the victim. I can’t think of a reason why. We know Athena isn’t afraid to go against Poseidon– they competed against each other to win Athens, and she won– but I digress.) Anyway, Athena punishes Medusa. She turns her into a monster, with poisonous snakes on her scalp instead of hair (some myths say that her lower body was also that of a snake.) As if that isn’t enough, anyone who looks into her eyes will be turned to stone. Some versions say that this was because she was so ugly that when people looked at her, they just turned to stone, others say it was because she looked so utterly sad. No wonder she would be sad– Athena also banished her to a lonely island. (Around is here in the second variation is where I’m not sure how the Gorgons fit in. Did she have two sisters who were punished with her? Were there two monsters already on the island, that she joined to become the third Gorgon? ) No more human contact or friendship or anything, forever. Even if there was someone out there who was nice enough to treat her decently in spite of the snake hair and all, it would be tricky to interact with them without turning them into stone.

Finally, I can connect all of this to the song! I think that the second version is closer to Heather Dale’s Medusa, because the first stanza sounds like Medusa’s life as a regular human.

“Mother would tell me I was a pretty girl

Then she would cry all night

Nobody thinks that really they’re being cruel

When they suggest that I should try to look like them

As if God loved the pretty ones best.

 

So apparently the above is talking about when Medusa’s a child– it wasn’t a happy childhood, for some unknown reason that made her mother cry, (unless that’s connected to the second reason), and because Medusa was constantly expected to be the “right” kind of beautiful, and no one understood how hard it was on her. Her mother told her she was pretty, and people were suggesting that she try to look like them– maybe she felt like she had to keep up being pretty like her mother thought she had been, and that may be why the expectations of everyone felt cruel.

Medusa

“As if God loved the pretty ones best” seemed a little out-of-place at first. This is the time of ancient Greece– this is Medusa– people don’t really believe in God yet in these parts. I think that this says how important being beautiful was thought to be.

Damn ’em all – I create my own perfection

Damn ’em all in the face of their rejection

Damn ’em all – well this dog will have its day

My garden’s full of pretty men who couldn’t stay away

 

In the story the song is telling, the refrain seems to leap to the future, after she has been turned into a monster. Medusa is done with all of the expectations, even if she is rejected because of that.

This dog will have it’s day” is interesting. Maybe she’s thinking that someday she’ll get revenge on them, or someday they’ll understand how terrible everything was.

The last line of the refrain talks about Medusa’s garden– I think that a common part of the Medusa myth is that she has a garden full of statues of people that she turned to stone. That would mean that the “pretty men” are ones who maybe couldn’t resist the challenge of killing the monster Medusa, but she beat them in the end. Calling them “pretty” sounds kind of condescending; it shows more of that contempt that she has for the rest of the world and it’s expectations.



 Notice the ones who all like to criticize

Are the ones trying to hide

Why would I sell my soul to be one of them

Better to love the me within behind the skin

I choose to be a goddess inside

Medusa has changed a lot since she was a child. Instead of listening and being brought down by the people suggesting that she try to look like them, maybe “criticizing” her, she says that they’re doing that out of insecurity– accusing them of “trying to hide.” She thinks their expectations are stupid now. “Better to love the me within behind the skin–” so she knows she is “ugly” and a monster and she doesn’t like her current “skin,” but it seems like she has mostly accepted that. She still knows who she is, despite her change of form.

medusa-real-yerebatan-sarnici-basilica-cistern-bazilika

 

Damn ’em all – I create my own perfection

Damn ’em all in the face of their rejection

Damn ’em all – well this dog will have its day

My garden’s full of pretty men who couldn’t stay away

Damn ’em all – I create my own perfection

Damn ’em all in the face of their rejection

Damn ’em all – well this dog will have its day

My garden’s full of pretty men who couldn’t stay away

Damn ’em all!”

Maybe she does like her skin, somewhat, after all, or maybe “the me within, behind the skin” is good enough for her. “I create my own perfection,” or, “I am perfect in my own new way, and to Tartarus with their standards.”

She seems to be trying to find some small bit of victory in her circumstances, as she repeats in the second to last line the thing about the men she’s conquered– the men who are just “pretty” statues now.

Though Medusa definitely isn’t perfect, her character has developed pretty impressively. First everyone has cruel, huge, expectations of her to be pretty and look like everyone else, and things are so bad that her mother cries every night, then Medusa is attacked, then cursed in a way that means everyone will be disgusted and terrified of her forever, and then left on a lonely island for the rest of her life with two other monsters, which means her existence is an invitation for all kinds of heroes to try their strength and honor by fighting her. All of this through no fault of her own.

And how does she respond to this? She doesn’t kill herself, which would be a very horrible thing to do, but you can understand why she might want to. She embraces what she has become and grows huge contempt for everyone else, and turns any man who comes to the island into stone. She chooses to be “a goddess inside.” A vengeful, rejected goddess who has come to terms with her existence.

myriam-tillson-medusa-headpiece-1925x1759 (1)

The Clash….

by JJKAirbrush.

This is another picture I have found on DeviantART. It’s a sort of optical illusion. The entire image was drawn by the artist, everything you see, was drawn*.

Image

Isn’t this what you’ve always wanted to happen? For what you imagine to come to life?

You can tell that these dragons are not necessarily good, or nice. The picture is called ‘The Clash’, as if someone had just left their drawings on the table and they had come to life to fight.

Almost no matter what it is, I think it’s seems really cool that something you made would actually come to life and do soemthing. Not necessarily because you want it to exist and to be real, but because, maybe, it feels good to have made something real that makes a little difference. Or maybe I’m just saying that becuase I’m a bit tired.

Anyway, I think that the picture is very well done. Look at how the parts of the dragons closest to the paper have the least color. The dragons aren’t all the same, either, they are different kinds. They even have a bit of their own backgrounds.The one dragon who seems to not have come alive yet: his tail is coincidentally connected with one of the cracks of the material that the papers were left on. And look at the tape. The artist drew that, too.

Very cool picture. Thank you, JJKAirbrush. 🙂

Thank you for reading,

–“Katherine”

*By “drawn” I just mean the artist created it all.

Insanely. Great.

Another thing I want to do with my blog is to share awesome songs and videos with you guys. I’m very glad I came across this haunting, slightly weird, but very cool video. By the way, I didn’t make the title “Insanely. Great.” That was the original author.

JamesRadcliffe.com

I am buried, deep and hard in a bunch of beautiful work, and had no plans to post until next week.

But then, something INCREDIBLE happened.  Something that literally BLEW ME AWAY.  And I couldn’t help myself.  I HAD to share it…

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The Roman…

…by Alicechan.

This will be another of my picture posts. Found this picture on DeviantART, an awesome artists website. Anyway, I do not own this amazing picture, I am only posting it here to share it’s greatness with everyone else.

Image

By the way, I haven’t written anything like this about a picture before. Please don’t pretend I’m a proffessional,and I’ll try not to either.

 

Look at the brilliant red of his cape and the feathers on hisd helmet, and the gold of the metal. Then look at the dark color and shadow of his face and his neck and his shoulder beneath his cape. It’s as if he is consumed by his office, his noble, brilliant office, so much that the color of the rest of him has faded away.

I love how this picture has a lot of detail, in the helmet, and also just indicated lines and ripples, in the cape. And look at the little building, maybe a temple, behind him.

This is one of the pictures that makes me want to grab my sketchbook and start copying it. Thank you, Alicechan, for making this cool picture. 🙂

Oonteel zee nayxt pozzt,

“Katherine”

 

So I’m Going to Write A Blog…

So I’m going to write a blog… I haven’t done anything like this before, but it should be pretty fun.

Anyway, I am Katherine. At least I am for this blog. I love to read, write, draw, play chess, and a bunch of other stuff.

I’m going to be writing a blog because… I think it will be fun, for one thing. Also, I’m hoping it will help me teach myself to do something regularly and keep at it and not give up on it, and because I hope it might make me a bit of a better writer. Maybe it will even be useful or entertaining to some of you people out there, too.

At the moment, I don’t know exactly what I’m going to blog about. But I do know that I’ve come across lots of cool websitse and pictures and videos I’d like t share with everyone, and I do know that I know a little bit about writing fiction, about drawing, about living in a big family, and that you shouldn’t take any of my advice, if I post any, too seriously. I know a lot about books I read, in many different genres, and I know a lot of different cool crafts and projects and things like that, that you can do for free, or almost for free.

And I say “a lot” and “tons” and “cool” too much. And the spell-checker on my computer is out. So if you can put up with stuff like that, you might just enjoy reading my blog. I’d love to hear from you, so if there’s some kind of comments thing on here, please don’t hesitate to use it!

Thanks for taking the time to read what I’m writing. Goodbye until next post, (which hopefully will be soon), Katherine.