After seeing a friend's status on Facebook last night, I was reminded of two quotes from The Odyssey: "Life is pain" and "Zeus metes out fortune to good and bad men as it pleases him. Hardship he sent to you, and you must bear it." (Actually, Zeus has been very kind to me lately, so maybe I should roast some sort of offering to thank him.) I'm amused how well I remember Homer's words twenty years after I encountered them. I hated The Odyssey. Hated. It drove me bonkers that Penelope sat at home waiting waiting waiting for her husband to come home, fending off suitors left and right, while the lout caroused about the Mediterranean hooking up with various nymphs. Also, Telemachus was a schmuck. I couldn't root for him at all. Did I mention that I loathed reading this book?

Regardless, I remember writing on my peach colored folder in blue pen, "'Life is Pain.' - Odysseus" and thinking how true it was. If anything, it is amazing that a tale from thousands of years ago could have a simple line that resonated so deeply with a 14 year old girl in 1990. The line about Zeus also seared itself into my head, as it did seem that people all around me were arbitrarily rewarded and punished. Things don't really change. People act the same, just while wearing different fashions.

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