OJCL Torch Winter 2019 | Page 16

Saturnalia Ben Fisk, Madeira On the Friday of the week before midterm exams, the MJCL had its annual Saturnalia celebration in honor of the ancient Roman festival to honor Saturn. Held in the high school cafeteria, the event started at 6:45 in the morning,45 minutes before the school day began. Despite how early it was, attendance was exceptional, almost filling the entire high school cafeteria! This year, the members of Senatus purchased a wide variety of breakfast food for the club, from cereal and milk to donuts and bagels to fresh fruit and snacks, along with hot chocolate and milk to drink. One by one, Magistra called up each Latin level to pick from the spread of food, and as always, Latin III was called last. Every year, there is a Saturnalia king and queen, which are randomly chosen from among all the club members. While setting up the cafeteria, club officers put special notes under two of the lunch table seats in order to determine who would be crowned as royalty. This year, we had Izzy Evans, an Amici, and Kaitlynn Teng, a Latin III, as the king and queen (yes, there can be two girls or two guys). Club aediles Andrew Whitson and Ben Ramos also held a sacrifice to Saturn. Unfortunately, they chose not to sacrifice a member of the French or Spanish Club this year as that wouldn’t exactly hold up well in court. Instead, they practiced their baseball swing, sacrificing some penguin and hedgehog stuffed animals with the wooden classroom gladius as the club cheered them on. Mad a s u n po g wi s a z Whi Ele n gi s The final part of the celebration was a traditional white elephant gift exchange in accordance with the ancient Saturnalia practice of gift giving. Each club member brought a small wrapped gift to trade at random with someone sitting at the same table. There are always some very interesting gifts, and this time was no exception as club members received such things as light-up sunglasses, Christmas pens and pencils, candy, two liter bottles and twelve packs of Sprite Cranberry, water bottles, tumblers, books, go-fish card decks, crossword puzzles, and coffee mugs. Although this concluded the morning celebrations, individual grade levels continued to celebrate in the classroom by singing along karaoke-style to some classic winter holiday songs in Latin, including “O Abies,” “Tinniunt,” and “Sit Prosperus Iesus Nati.” After all, I can’t really think of a better way to get Latin Club members in the holiday spirit.