Welcome to "The Gods Aren't Bored, At Least in My Classroom!" I'm Anne Johnson, and I have been teaching nothing but Greek literature since before the winter break. This means I have had to wrestle with the stories of the Greek pantheon through the lens of modernity. It's been interesting.
Today, however, I have a serious and stern lecture for those of you young striplings who are thinking of doing magic workings.
It's fashionable these days to think one can hex and spell and bane with impunity. I'm here to tell you, that's not the case. When you set out to do a hex on that person who is making your life a circle of Hell, be very careful how you word your spell. I mean, very careful. Also, choose your deity helper wisely. Some deities don't like to be "used," particularly by careless moderns who don't pay proper, culturally exact, respect.
There is a person who continues to make my life a circle of Hell. Last spring I started a bane spell on her, and I didn't set out the proper parameters for the outcome. Mistake.
After starting the spell, the following things happened to me:
1. Andy N. Condor died suddenly of unexplained causes. I flew all the way to Salt Lake City to meet him in 2019, and I promised to return in 2029. Now they're making a statue of him.
2. I met the closest neighbor to my sweet mountain property only after he drunkenly accosted me on a dark, deserted road, with a German shepherd in tow, taking particular umbrage with my New Jersey license plates. Not feeling so safe on Anneland anymore.
3. Brooks Robinson died. Okay, you had to be there, I suppose, to see little 10-year-old Anne idolize this particular saint of a human being. He was the favorite athlete of both Mr. J and myself, old, yes, but still. Losing two of my heroes in as many months was a blow.
4. The person I'm doing the bane work against had control of my schedule at work and gave me the worst students in the school. This has been one of the hardest years of my teaching career, and the loathed supervisor is still there.
5. Again completely unexpectedly, my cat Gamma developed severe weight loss and was diagnosed with aggressive lymphoma. We had to send him across the Rainbow Bridge.
6. Breast cancer scare. Forever more I will be on the mammogram fast track.
That's a heaping helping of bad juju there for just a five-month span. And yes, it might all be a coincidence. But dang. All that stuff at once?
This is where you would expect me to offer the free advice to quit the bane work. But I haven't done that. I have not wavered. The only critique I have to give myself is the wording I used when I initiated the spell. It was too strong. And if you haven't noticed, it's hard to re-word a spell once you've set it into motion. It's not like editing a blog post, let me tell you.
When we choose to work magic, we have to be prepared for blowback. The spell I chose to work didn't have any verbal instructions, just physical ones. Left to my own devices for the wording, I employed too much hyperbole. I took the work too lightly.
Don't take magic lightly. But do it all the same. It's a tool against the oppressor, a tool that is ancient and holy.
In lighter news, my Mummers club won the 2024 championship! Follow the link to see our routine. I appear onscreen at around the 3 minute mark briefly as the club frolics around the street cameraman.