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[personal profile] elenbarathi
Part of a journal entry from Deviantart, which I recently stopped being a lurker at:

"The "assimilated" Mood Icon Thingy isn't from Star Trek or whatever it was originally from. It is from *historical linguistics*. Yes, that's right, I am a *sound* that has changed to match the other sounds around me.

"And another cool word in historical linguistics is "haplology". And it has "Haplo" in it, which means "single" or "alone", and it's also a rune and the name of a very cool almost-demigod in the Death Gate Cycle, which is a very cool series by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman.

"Haplology is the changing of sounds to differ from the sounds around them--thus the name "haplology", which means literally something like "making single". Like Latin arbor > Spanish arbol (the r changed because the two rs in quick succession are hard to pronounce). Haplology is pretty much the opposite of assimilation.

"And so a short three sentences on the Mood Icon Thingy turn into a three paragraph discussion/rant on historical linguistics. Yes, I'm a geek/dork/nerd/weird smart person who knows too much and who has an evil laugh, Celebrian, and a letter opener, and other implements of sharpness, annoying smartness, and/or weirdness.

"

"*End. Done. Fin.*"

Weather ranting!

It has been storming continually for the past long time. If you're reading this, I'm sure you know that, since you live in Minnesota, unless you're a weird LJer who found my LJ randomly, which should be impossible because this entry is on friends-lock. And if you're a hacker, I can tell you right now: this journal is a pretty pathetic journal to hack into. Go find some celebrity's blog and make embarrassing entries for them.

ANYWAY. It was storming on Monday night, during my (canceled) soccer practice; Wednesday afternoon, when I told Sonja (next door girl who drives us places) that it was 16 hours late, since it should have come during our soccer game on Tuesday night (which we lost. No bragging, fable/artangst/keegan who doesn't have an account yet/chloe who I don't know if she has an account/anyone else on the annoyingly colored lime green team); and Wednesday night, when my wimp of a father told us to go into the basement because OH NOES the sirens were going off and OH NOES it's DANGEROUS upstairs. (It was about as dangerous as somebody poking your arm. Probably loads less than that.)

Monday night more detail: We were practicing soccer, as soccer players will generally do. Of course it was cloudy. That's prerequisite for a storm to form. (I don't know if that's the correct usage, but I'll find out sometime.) Anyway, fifteen minutes into practice, some other coach ran over and told us there was a tornado warning (a tornado/funnel cloud had been sighted) for Ramsey County (that's where we're practicing. Duh) and that she was leaving the field, yadda yadda yadda. Well, apparently when we were at camp it rained a lot during one practice, and it wasn't that bad out anyway. We just kept practicing until the sirens went off, and then everybody was using cell phones to call their parents.

It wasn't raining yet, so we were standing outside and looking up at the sky to see if we could see the funnel cloud/tornado that had prompted the tornado warning. We couldn't, unfortunately, but there were some magnificent cloud rotations going on up there. One of the best formed right over our heads, and I nearly-yelled at my teammates why did nobody have a cameraphone. Our coach kept pointing out stuff in the sky, all of which amazed me with how much power storms had. He told us about "hail alleys" that started in Minnetonka and how if you lived in one, your insurance cost more.

All of a sudden I noticed that the temperature had dropped a *lot*. My parents said later that it was about 15 degrees in 20 minutes. That *is* a *lot*. And this was happening as we were practicing as well, but this is a better place to mention it: the clouds were moving crazily fast. I think the only other time I've seen clouds move that fast was Wednesday afternoon right before the storm. More on that later. The wind and coolness were somewhat linked: it took a blast of relatively cool air to make me realize that it was colder out than it had been ten minutes ago.

When we finally got everybody in a car, we drove Emma back to her house. It started raining when we got in the van, and the rain was becoming heavier and heavier as we left her house (with her inside of course). By the time we got to the Mississippi, it was deafening. As my mother and I, in the van, crossed the Mendota Bridge (Hwy 110, I think), the rain lessened all of a sudden. My mother thought we had gotten rid of the storm for good. I thought we'd just outrun it. I was so unbelievably right.

I was going to get the mail when we were at our mailbox, but all of a sudden it started pouring. By the time my mother had parked the van the rain was back to "deafening". There were periodic small flashes of lightning and loud rumbles of thunder like sky avalanches. It was an awesome storm. I told my mother how lightning from a decent-sized storm could power so, so much, so I thought about building a city with wire frames over it to catch and use the lightning somehow. I couldn't figure out quite how to make it work, but it was an interesting idea. My brother took our (*ancient*) videocamera out and shot some footage of the storm, including the rain-waves made by the wind, and the thunder-drums and such.

Later, when it was entirely dark except for the lightning, my brother told me to come watch the lightning with him. There were some that were just flashes that lit up the clouds, but which didn't let you see the actual bolt; small-bolted ones that left afterimages as if you had quickly moved your eyes while looking at a distant bright light; and the monsters, that forked out under the clouds like fingers about to snatch you, and that then disappeared. They could make it look like there were two suns in the sky, instead of just clouds and rain. We were sitting close to the windows, so there was a tiny part of fear inside me that told me to "move away from the window, you'll get struck by lightning!" Oh, but it was beautiful, though, absolutely gorgeous, like cracks in the dark sky, split apart by unimaginable power.

Wednesday night more detail: I had to write graduation thank-yous (two of which are actually done). It was awesome, though, when I turned off the lights inside and turned on the lights outside and watched the rain come in waves driven by the wind. There were two types of rain: the kind that seemed determined to fall down and was only swayed a bit by the wind's force, and the kind that was much lighter and danced with the wind, which couldn't decide what way it wanted to blow. When the lights outside were turned off, the trees were bending from the wind and looked like they were trying to reach up out of the ground and hit something just out of reach, or as if the wind was making the trees pummel themselves. It was lit up in the back by lightning, and the trees seemed a lot more thinly-leaved than normal. I don't think it was any different: it's just that it was easier to see the holes in the leaf covering. There were moths and insects cowering on our screen door, which may not have offered much protection, but the wind was too strong for them to have done anything else.

I had been watching. The clouds, moving too fast to seem normal, were one thing I watched; the other was the TV weather reports showing precipitation models and hail predictions. There was also footage of this amazing tornado to the southwest that jumped right over a farmhouse and then plowed back into the farm fields again. Then the tornado disintegrated. It was beautiful. I watched at various windows as the storm whipped to the northeast; I even went in the garage to see how much water was seeping in (quite a lot, as it turned out). When I was in there, there was this banging noise, like somebody was shooting at the garage doors. It turned out to be hail, but it was miniscule compared to the 2-inch (golfballish) hail that was forecasted in some places. We had a single golf ball hit our windshield once, and the windshield just cracked. Think of what many more of those could do to a car--or a person.

There were two more things I saw before my father convinced me to go to the basement. The winds were strong, and I would have had trouble walking had I gone outside. Even though that which was on the east side of our house was somewhat protected from the wind by the house itself, our yard waste container, on a part of our driveway in that somewhat sheltered place, managed to get blown over. It was empty, and probably would not have blown over had it been full, but that wind was strong. It was whipping the flag around like it was only a leaf. I am sure that we would not have been able to find it had it ripped loose.

Today: Today shall henceforth be known as The Day On Which it Did Not Rain When Maria Wanted it to and it Looked Like Rain Anyway and Should Have Rained Because That's What Rain-filled Clouds Are Supposed to Do. Other titles include
a) The Day On Which Maria Spent Four Hours Filing Stuff at Her Mother's Work and Only Received 25 Measly Dollars for It;
b) The Day On Which Maria Learned That the Books She Ordered from Barnes and Noble (HHGG #1 and Something Else) Would Arrive the Next Day; and
c) The Day On Which Maria Resolved to Never, Ever Become an Accountant, Even Under Pain of Death, Because Accounting is One of the Most Boring Jobs Ever Invented by Somebody Who Had Full Control of His or Her Brain.

More common classification names include:
a) A Day On Which Maria's Siblings Were Lazy and Did Not Do Anything;
b) A Day On Which Maria Forgot Her Lunch and Ate an Unhealthy or No Breakfast;
c) A Day On Which Maria Made Unnecessary Noise While Not Intending to Do So and Swore in Frustration;
d) A Day On Which Maria's Alarm Clock Did Not Go Off;
e) A Day On Which Maria Was Bored Out of Her Mind; and
f) A Day On Which Maria's Parents Found Things at Which to Snipe Unnecessarily.
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elenbarathi

September 2007

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