Symposium is a big word. The ancient Greek definition is actually different from what I thought it would be:
The Greek symposium was a key Hellenic social institution.
It was a forum for men of good family to debate, plot, boast, or simply to revel with others. Hey, nothing wrong with that and I would be kidding you if I said none of that went on at the Trans Ohio Symposium which begins today (Friday). The really big deal though, are the workshops provided.
I have found over the years, the best way to get your money's worth at a tour or a group event was to volunteer. By doing so, you can provide much needed assistance and learn more yourself. Essentially it's a trade out (barter) -your precious time for your precious money. At this time of my life, my time is a commodity I can trade, so Liz and I both signed up for day one today to help.
What is today? It's a day of presentations for what I call the "intelligentsia" (Latin this time for:is a social class of people engaged in complex mental labour aimed at disseminating culture.) People interested in such things can get college education credits from the sessions today as professional types dissect issues such as transgender violence, prisoners, school students, partners, athletes and more. Then tomorrow and Sunday-is the time for the "not so intelligentsia" such as me and others who are - discuss another whole range of subjects.
Wow! Such a weekend. My problem is I have always been a conference "geek" and come away with too many things I believe I need to do to "conquer the world" I was always taught if you could come away with three and do them-that was an excellent return for your time. So knowledge and meeting Trans artist Pamela Ann Reed and Transgender veteran/activist Brynn Tannehill will be geeking moments for me. Finally, I will be interested to see how the mix of participants works out this year. Last year the proportion seemed to be in favor of younger transgender men. I feel much of our feminine population is still deeply closeted by need or is of the opinion of one of my friends that she is still a "tra--y" and only would go to party.
I tried to tell her, of course there will party time too-as in all great conferences but this one is so much more!