Should I stay or should I go?
So far, I've only talked to one person who's going, and that was a parent at Child's Academy today. Charlotte and Renate (my housemates) are both staying, and so I think I will too. I really don't feel like sitting in the traffic that I know will be there no matter which way I try to go home; plus I want to stay here with all my stuff. If anything DOES happen to the apartment, I want to be here, so I can deal with it ASAP. If, for example, the window blows out in my room, I can grab my electronics, cover all my pictures and books, save my homework, and figure out a way to temporarily cover the window. If I'm not here, I'll walk in on Monday night to a sodden and utterly destroyed room. If the power goes out, I can eat all my yogurt and cheese and sorbet and Popsicles and everything from the refrigerator. If I'm not here, it will all go bad - fifty dollars' worth of Publix groceries down the drain. I'd rather 'go down with the ship', if you'll pardon the Titanic reference. (Or is it Dido?) ;)
Plus, how many times have they predicted a major blow, only to have nothing happen? They canceled school for two days for Hurricane Floyd in 2000, and (so I hear) those were the two most beautiful days of the year in Gainesville. Charley was supposed to brush Jacksonville a couple of weeks ago, and we got nothing, not a whisper. I actually like hurricanes; that's probably why they keep missing us.
Anyway, I've got quite a bit of homework this weekend. The first two weeks are always easy, and then the first assignment is always due in the third week. I wish they'd space these things out a little so that every class wasn't on the same schedule, but whatever. The biggest thing was the first homework assignment for LIN 3460 (Structure of Human Language) - we're studying morphemes (the smallest units of a language which still carry meaning) and among other things, we had to take data - first words, then sentences - from different languages, some of which don't even use the English alphabet, and figure out what the units were and what they meant.
(simple) example from class today, using Nahuatl:
mopelomes - my dogs
nopelo - your dog
How many morphemes are there in this data? (And, if it's our homework, what are their syntactic categories, what is the gloss, are they roots or not, what parts of speech are they, are they lexical or grammatical, and what is the take-yield equation? And, if they're in English, how do you write them in IPA?) Grrr... I can't stand IPA... (International Phonetic Alphabet)... all those funny symbols representing pronunciation that you see in dictionaries. It's my third year of linguistics and I still don't have all the vowels memorized!
(The answer, in case you're wondering: 'mo' is 'my', 'no' is 'your', 'pelo' is 'dog', and 'mes' is the plural morpheme.)
Anyway, it's actually fun - everyone knows me and my decoding stuff, I love it - but the last question was a pain. It was written in Tlingit, which I bet none of you have ever even heard of (it's spoken in the Arctic, I believe), and there were 26 morphemes in total. We had about 15 full sentences, not just words, and half the characters weren't even English letters - they were random symbols that I didn't even know a keyboard could produce. Plus the word order was totally different than in English; the object came first. That was something else we had to figure out.
Sorry, I'm digressing. The point is that I like it, but that it's time-consuming. I got the assignment done (with a Ben & Jerry's run in the middle, with Charlotte and Anna and Sara...) but now I've got another one for LIN 3201, and that one is not fun at all. Decoding I like... areas of articulation I do not. (That's the actual physical motions behind making certain sounds, like where your tongue goes to make Ts and Ds and if your vocal cords are open or closed when making certain sounds.) It's got questions like whether it's possible or not to make certain sounds (e.g. a voiceless velar velaric ingressive stop, or a velar glottic egressive sound with simultaneous nasal hum) and why or why not. BAH. I barely know what the things are.
Sorry. I'll stop rambling about things nobody understands. Goodnight, sleep tight, and don't let the linguistics bugs bite.