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Re: Sagittarius with crossbow?


Wow. It was very nice to hear from you again.

How're things up in the frozen north?

Pretty good. We own a house (something that would have been out of the question in the CA real-estate market); it isn't huge, but it is across the street and down the jogging path from my office at Boeing, so my commute is a 10-minute nature walk.

  Have you guys gotten
the medieval academy operational?

Not exactly. We do have a school, though: check out www.islas.org. It is a web-based tutorial service for home-schooled high school students and offers a full college prep curriculum in the "Classical Christian tradition", with Latin and Greek substituted for spoken languages. Our students attend IRC "Classes" once or twice a week, during which we have lively debates (and during which they also websurf, pass each other notes, and do all the standard things normal kids in class do...); they email in homework and take web-based quizzes, and present problem solutions which they have posted to the class conference center. Bruce teaches Western Lit to Dante (intensive), World Lit, English Lit, American Lit, and Senior English for AP preparation, as well as Greek 1 and 3 or Greek 2 and 4 each year, and AP Latin. I teach biology, a general introduction to natural science, astronomy, and alternate physics and chemistry. Last year, my bio students did over 700 on the SAT II and my physics studes made 3 and 4 on the physics AP: we get good kids. I also teach a writing program course with no class periods; I have students from the Ivory Coast to Anchorage in that one.

Your departure has left
a dearth of medievalists down here, which is why I needed
to look you up again.

I've been working for about three decades on the Voynich
Manuscript, with which you may be familiar.  While trying
to determine bounds on the date, someone noted that the
Sagittarius picture has a crossbow, which may be unusual:
more common is a longbow, I think.

I don't off the top of my head, but I can dig through some source material and see what I find.

I thought perhaps you or Bruce might know off the top of your heads whether (a) it's unusual, or (b) bounds on the dates when one might expect a crossbow in an astrological chart.

Hope things are going well with your kids.  Our younger
son and his wife are expecting our first grandchild in
about a month.

Mary graduated with honors and a major in Greek/minor in physics from Swarthmore in 1998, spent the next year at the American School for Classical Studies in Athens on full scholarship, and is now in her second year of graduate work in classics at UPenn, where she had a Mellon scholarship last year and has a full Ben Franklin scholarship for the next four years. She's been making a name for herself in the interactive fiction gaming world, having won second place in the lasted competition (I don't know who runs this stuff) by writing a game that is basically a conversation with an "intelligent" non-player program. The interesting thing is that this player keeps track of past inputs to the conversation, and alters responses according to what has already been said. This is AI stuff, and some tech company writing intelligent computer/user interfaces in Israel paid for her to fly over for the weekend in January to present her approach. She has a boyfriend she met through the MUD community; he's in Seattle (which means she comes home much more often than she might otherwise).

David is 18, finishing his high school home curriculum, and trying to figure out what he will do next year, since he insisted on applying only to really competitive schools and did not get accepted to any of them. He is waitlisted at William-and-Mary in Virginia. He refused to apply to UW in Seattle, so if W&M falls through, he will wind up going to the local community college while he figures out what he really wants to do. This is actually a good thing; he has a great deal of intelligence, very high people skills, and much music/artistic ability, but no focus and little ambition--and you need both to survive college no matter how talented you are otherwise.

Sarah is 16, a very good self-taught musician/artist; she wants to go to a good liberal arts school, get training as a mixologist, and ultimately become a film producer. She has a lot of self-discipline for anything she's interested in and absolutely none for anything she isn't interested in, so her school-work is mixed.

I still work full-time for Boeing, where I'm attempting to get onto the non-managerial high-end career track. I still do S/W configuration management; the increasing emphasis on ISO-9000 compliance means I will never be laid off unless I fail to learn the next wave of s/w. I'm trying to catch up on Java now, having reached minor proficiency in perl (I can write certain kinds of cgi-bin programs okay, others are still a black box mystery).

I gotta go...but keep in touch.

Christe A. McMenomy, Ph.D.          Natural Science/Biology/Chemistry/Physics
Scholars' Online Academy * Regina Coeli Academy mailto:mcmenom2@xxxxxxxxxxx
http://www.halcyon.com/mcmenom2/	                 http://www.islas.org