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Playing Possum

For the last two months we’ve had a possum visiting us in the evenings. I had left a pizza box outside on our freezer – it was just too icy and cold to go to the trash cans and I planned to do so in the morning—and there was a bit of pizza left. I opened the door later that night to check the temperature and saw a possum noshing on the remains of the meat-lovers special. Lol. It took me a minute for my brain to process. My first thought was “how did piety possum get on the freezer,” since it looked exactly like a stuffed toy possum that we displayed at the PLC conference years ago, mostly to mock those who mock piety. Then, I realized it was a real-life possum! I gave it some cat food and have been doing this nightly, though the last few days it hasn’t been around. 

Possums are awesome creatures. They eat ticks, thousands of ticks per year and this is important where I live, since the Hudson Valley is practically ground zero for Lyme disease. They’re not really very aggressive (though I wouldn’t just go petting any random possum). They’ll play possum and emit a really gross smell to ward off predators and they don’t get rabies. They are good for your garden and will eat bugs and such that damage your plants. They also are immune to most snake bites. Also, the little guys are seriously smart. 

On a spirit work level, the power of the possum is that of transmuting poison, pollution, and contamination. This is no small gift and I am grateful for the presence of Possum right now in our lives. 

Excellent Online Exhibit via ISAW on Galen

ISAW, the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, currently has a fabulous online exhibit about Galen up. It talks about Galen’s life, education, and contributions to the field of medicine, what medicine was like in the ancient world, the pharmaceuticals, tools, and surgical techniques available to physicians, women’s medicine and female physicians, and Asclepius among other things. I had a blast going through it and learning things last night. For those interested, Check it out here.

Funerary or votive relief depicting a heroized doctor; near the doctor’s head is an open box or cabinet with surgical instruments. Roman, 1st century BCE–1st century CE. Marble. Probably made in the Peloponnese, Greece. H. 67 cm; W. 83 cm; D. 7.5 cm. Antikensammlung der Staatlichen Museen zu Berlin – Preußischer Kulturbesitz: SK 804. Photo: Ingrid Geske. © Antikensammlung der Staatlichen Museen zu Berlin – Preußischer Kulturbesitz (taken from the Galen exhibit section on Galen’s Medical Education).