Sunday, August 21, 2005

the 2 Maria Celestes-- don't confuse them!*

courtesy Telemundo and Rice University.

*Or,"don't get them confused!", that's not right either..."don't confuse one with the other!"
(see, that's just not very catchy...)

In the tradition of Plutarch(well,sort of):

Maria Celeste 1: "yes, I know, you see me as just a bubbly talking head on Telemundo. But I'm also a very strong PETA supporter, so if I hear about how you mistreated an animal, I'll fuck your shit up. So just watch it."

Maria Celeste 2, by contrast, was "a woman of exquisite mind [and] singular goodness" according to her father Galileo,who put her and her sister in a convent as he deemed them unmarriagable because G and the housekeeper had them out of wedlock. You already know about how the Catholic church made Galileo recant his nutty assertion that the earth was not the center of the universe. That came later. When MC2 was 13, G and the local Catholic powers-that-be still got along, and they pulled strings for him regarding that pesky still-too-young-to-"choose"-the-life-of-a-nun thing, and off they went.
Anyway: MC2(1600-1634) spent the last 21 years of her brief life locked up inside the cloistered walls of the San Mateo convent.

Incidentally, MC2 was originally named Virginia, but took the name Maria Celeste after the the Virgin, Maria, and Celeste, after her father's telescopic pursuits. It seems some 120 of her letters to her father have survived to the present, and scholars haven't been able to detect a trace of rancor towards dad in any of them. Talk about sublimation. But did she ever have the occasional troubling dream of fucking his shit up?

Of course that was a long time ago, and today we don't have to worry about religious nuts silencing the work of scientists, nor of a secular, moderate society turning its back on social progress and going all medieval on their constitution and their women.