Thursday, April 23, 2009

Happy Birthday Shakespeare

Today is, I believe, Shakespeare's birthday. Did you see the portrait of him that was recently authenticated? Do you have a favorite play or sonnet?

Because I was an English major in college and then working on a Phd. in English, I was exposed to quite a bit of Shakespeare in "the day." Some of my happiest memories are of being an card-carrying member of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C. The librarians--underpaid and twentysomethings, just like me--would gleefully fill me in on gossip about the famous scholars. Also, every afternoon, the library served an English tea, an elegant event that a starving graduate student living in a bleak bauhaus apartment complex couldn't help but appreciate.

I have found that in recent years I am still especially fond of Hamlet and A Midsummer's Night Dream. My first exposure to Shakespeare was watching cartoon versions of these two plays performed on television by Mr. Magoo. I still remember Mr. Magoo talking to the ghost of his father in Hamlet and running around with an ass's head in A Midsummer's Night Dream.

In any case, I imagine the author of the love sonnets would appreciate my leaving graduate school for amore ... or so I hope!

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