I must have accidentally run into this featured blog when I was a student and I’m pretty sure it was another of those referral finds that came because I was following a blog that we both had in common.
The Dancing Professor. Do you get any clues as to what this blog may be about? I caution you not to get cocky. Yes, the author is a professor, a Classicist with a PhD who lives in Philadelphia and teaches at an unnamed large university. She also dances: ballet mostly.
trophos* (I’m coming back to this word at the end) is so much more than the name of her blog implies. She sews. Intriguing abstract quilts are a specialty and usually made for her friends and family. She also makes a goodly amount of her own clothing-opting for styles that remind me of the swinging vintage 1940’s. She likes purple. She lives in a rather shady area of Philadelphia, doesn’t own a car, loves baseball, has some interesting neighbors, has traveled the world, hails originally from Texas, and I have never seen her face. Pictures of her posted on the blog give hints only: glasses, dark hair, baseball caps.
trophos blogs about teaching and is often brutally honest about life in academia. I bet that it was the academic nature of this blog that drew me in initially. I stick around because she also is an amazing person to talk with about race, feminism, society, ancient Greece, (I’m mostly silent in those discussions) cats, fish, reading, mutant snails, research, careers, poetry, a little cooking, Coney Island, sex, the need for alone time, Homer, Sappho (upcoming), music, humor…there really is no topic that hasn’t come up on her blog at some point.
Her method is simple: write for 30 minutes each night. Sometimes she goes over, sometimes her posts are short. Sometimes she misses a night or two. She comments readily and allows me moments in which I firmly, yet lovingly lecture in a motherly way regarding her post topics. She posts pictures of her world around Philly, her travels, her aquarium, and her cats, although it’s usually Oscar that takes center stage.
I’m going to admit something here. I am rather in awe of her. She is one of the most well-informed, intelligent bloggers that I have had the pleasure of conversing with. It is rare that I don’t learn at least one new piece of information from each of her blog posts. I would do almost anything to be a student in one of her classes.
There’s one aspect of her blog though that makes it a must read for me each day, over and above all the amazing aspects that she shares.
trophos often publishes pictures like this.
I mean come on…GOATS!
This blogger remains anonymous. Her WordPress site is identified only by trophos. For a long time I have wondered about this name and assumed that it had to be relational to something Greek. Tonight while preparing this post I finally searched for the meaning of this word. Ironically, the majority of my results centered on a pharmaceutical company of the same name. Then I stumbled over a small link and this is what I discovered:
trophos: a nurse; a caregiver; sustaining someone by nourishing and giving tender care like a nurse; a mother’s tender care.
Dear Professor, with this discovery I am intrigued beyond measure and must contemplate meaning from this information. Might I say that a bit of a juxtaposition seems to be in place…any insight for this devoted reader?