Cleopatra: The Lover & Fighter

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Cairo, Egypt --- Ancient Egyptian relief of Cleopatra VII (69-30 B.C.)  Undated photograph, retouched.    BPA 2 #6378 --- Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

My inspiration of the week: Cleopatra

Cleopatra was born in 69 BC in Alexandria, Egypt. When her father died, he left his kingdom to eighteen year old Cleopatra and her twelve year old brother. Early on, Cleopatra was overthrown in favor of her younger brother by people believing he would be easier to manipulate. Cleopatra fled but soon began building an army from the Arab tribes.

At some point, Julius Caesar arrived in Alexandria and took over the palace. He summoned Cleopatra’s brother who was away. Not wanting to be left out, Cleopatra had herself smuggled in through enemy lines rolled in a carpet and delivered to Caesar. Cleopatra and Caesar became lovers. War broke out that led to many deaths including Cleopatra’s brother, who drowned in the Nile while trying to flee, thereby securing her position as Pharaoh.

During the year 46 BC, Caesar returned to Rome and brought Cleopatra with him. In 44 BC, he was assassinated by his senators and fearing for her life and the life of her child with Caesar, Cleopatra fled Rome to return home to Alexandria.

Cleopatra was invited by Mark Antony to Tarsus in 41 BC. In a very calculated move, she made a grand entrance upon her arrival which bewitched Mark Antony instantly. They soon became lovers. This affair would continue for many years. In 32 to 31 BC, Antony finally divorced his wife, Octavia. This forced the Western part of the world to recognize his relationship with Cleopatra.

In 30 BC, as Octavian’s forces entered Alexandria, the distraught Antony committed suicide by falling on his own sword. Cleopatra followed him in death after Octavian’s forces captured Egypt. She committed suicide so as not to suffer humiliation at his hands. Cleopatra died on August 12, 30 BC at the age of 39. She would be the last Egyptian Pharaoh. After her death, Caesarion, her son with Caesar, was strangled and her other children were raised by Antony’s wife, Octavia.

Cleopatra was a born leader whose charisma, intelligence, and ambition pushed her to become a fairly successful monarch. She was able to remain a passionate woman but also a powerhouse leader.


Thoughts While Trying Pot Brownies for the First Time

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So… I tried pot brownies for the first time recently. I had enough for three different nights and decided to write down my thoughts on each night so I could remember what was going through my mind at the time.

Notes from Experience #1

“Deja Vu while you’re high.

I won’t remember this in the morning. My short term memory isn’t working.

The tv is talking about being high while I’m high. It’s freaking me out.

Heart flutters….world mutters….piercing sky…whistling in my ear.

I’ll remember this.

I panic because I almost forgot.

Every thought and thing seems important. I need to write it down.

My brain feels like there’s no gravity to hold it to Earth. It keeps floating up but my skull is keeping it prisoner like a               ceiling does to a balloon.”

Notes from Experience #2

“My vagina is unraveling…Like a flower blooming…It’s warm.

I would have sex with Daniel Tosh.

Sex was really good tonight. I kept thinking it was a dream and I would never feel the orgasm but then I did.

Numb intensity.

Helium brain has returned.”

Notes from Experience #3

“Why hadn’t I realized before how cute Danny Pudi is?

The words I read won’t enter my brain. I have to read everything 3 times in order to remember.

With alcohol buzz, you slowly get foggier and foggier. Its a straight line leading up to the buzzed feeling.

With pot, everything feels fine and normal, then suddenly it spikes and you realize something weird is going on. Like       suddenly time moves very slowly or you’ll get stuck on a thought but then you’re back to normal again. It goes up and       down like a heartbeat.

My husband says the tip of his eyelids are on fire. They feel hot.

He says he gets cold when he blinks.

I find that funny.”

Closing thoughts: What have I learned about myself from this experiment? The first night I was so paranoid about forgetting anything that I couldn’t focus on anything else. The second night something apparently was happening in my lady parts. And the third night was all about debating pot versus alcohol. I know I’d never be able to function properly if this was a normal habit for me. My thoughts seem so important in that state and they obviously weren’t. Also, I have questionable taste in men when I’m high so that would lead to all sorts of trouble. I DID sleep like a baby on those nights though.

It was an interesting experience.

Tuning Into Life

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On my search for a way to broaden my horizons and find interesting new things to be a part of, I had the lovely idea of checking out Craigslist. I figured maybe I would find a kindred spirit or like minded individuals who might be in need of a volunteer for a good cause or maybe just needed assistance in a personal matter like help cleaning out a garage for an older person or something.

Instead I found this:

1.) Sex. A LOT of people want sex. Apparently, they’re super comfortable in asking strangers if they could lick a variety of their body parts.  Also, there seems to be a VERY high demand for big, black women. So much so that as I scrolled down and read tons of these requests, I started to feel a little insecure about being a little white woman. I then reminded myself that I don’t actually want to have sex with strangers so the feeling subsided.

2.) There are so many businesses posting on this site that I felt a little overwhelmed. Which ones are legit? Do I have the patience or time to message each one to see if their volunteer work is up my alley? I’m just so busy. I have a blog to update, after all.

3.) Loneliness was a recurring theme in some posts. One person was just asking for someone to hang out with. Maybe do some gardening together or go to Art museums. This really bummed me out because I can’t imagine not having a single person who I could do things with. Sure, this guy’s post might be hiding a more sinister request. He might really be looking for sex and using “gardening” as a cover but if not, then that means he got so lonely he’s now asking strangers to be his friend.

4.) The main thing I realized on my Craigslist search is that I’m a cynic. I questioned every single post I read. I even questioned a post that stated the person needed assistance in commiting suicide. I went back and forth on whether I even believed them or whether they were just trolls looking to see who would take the bait. I decided I didn’t believe them.

I live life as if I’m watching everything happen on tv. I don’t feel like a participant. I feel like the audience. That’s not how people are supposed to feel. If I thought there was even a small chance that this person was serious about killing themselves, wouldn’t a decent thing to do, at the very least, be to message them something encouraging? But then I thought about how much I hate when people try to encourage me when they think I’m down. Am I supposed to pretend I know that things will get better for them? Is that what you’re supposed to do?  I know how important hope is and maybe just the acknowledgement that you’re not alone in the world or that someone heard your cry could help someone.

After thinking about that, I did go back to reach out to them but the post had been deleted. Now I’ll never know. Maybe it was a prank. If not, then I missed an opportunity to do the decent thing because of my cynicism. Even if my words fell on deaf ears, atleast I would’ve done something instead of just standing by.