Thursday, December 07, 2006


The first time I can remember hearing the word "beta" was at a slumber party. I was in fifth or sixth grade and we wanted to watch a movie that someone had brought to the party. The birthday girl had a sad face and said that we couldn't watch the movie because her machine was in beta. Whatever that meant; to me it meant we couldn't watch the movie. Beta must be bad.

Around this same time we went to Memphis for Thanksgiving with my aunt's family. She had a son a couple of years older than me (although at the time that seemed like an eternity). He had two or three beta, and each of them was inside a little bowl. I remember asking why they were separated. They were beta, I was told, and they would eat each other if they were together. Weird. Beta must be carnivorous.

And then there were high school algebra and trig classes where we used alpha and beta and sines and cosines. I hated math classes. Beta must be complicated.


Time passed. The Hater and I became a thing. He was sucked into the beta fish-and-plant gift combo. Fluffy the beta ate the roots to the plant that sat on top of my book shelf. I liked holding mirrors up to the fish bowl and shining a light so that Fluffy would strut her stuff and get mad. That fish lived for about a year and a half without me changing the water. Beta must like muck.

I joined a Greek theater fraternity and had to learn the Greek alphabet for pledging. I could say the whole thing in about nine seconds. (Thank goodness for rote memory.) The powers who decided that clowning was enough to be considered "theatrical" also were so impressed that they made me say the alphabet again so that they could time me. Epsilon always threw me off. Beta must be simple.

Learning the Greek alphabet threw me off when it came to my summer of ROTC. It was bravo, not beta, which you have to admit has a better audible ring. (Although the Drill Sergeants were less than impressed and more than willing to assign push-ups when you called bravo the wrong name. I know this from personal experience.) They divided us into groups for several things. The Alphas were always the best groups and the Echoes were the worst groups. I stood proudly in the echo group for most things, except for shooting an M-16. I was the best female shot in my platoon, which made that the ONLY alpha group to which I could belong (with the exception of the book-learning stuff because I'm a natural nerd). I averaged delta and echo, and I was okay with that; I was there to endure, not excel. Bravo, much less beta, would have been an over-shot.

There may or may not be more beta memories lost in my brain. The point is that I don't have a great association in my head for beta... and now the blog is exactly that. This is my first beta post, and I'm not entirely sure what that means. But here it is. Ta-da: betafied.

I hope that everybody can still access and read it. Else beta will forever be known as FUBAR.

1 comment:

JOY said...

beta in hindi means my child....
just adding to ur info....