TOS is an Award Finalist!

February 27th, 2015 → 6:15 am

The Other Shakespeare has just been announced as a finalist in the 2014 Wishing Shelf Independent Book Awards.  What an honor!  Thank you so much to all those independent judges and panelists who took the time to read it, and obviously, appreciate it.

Filed under: Blog & Literature/Theatre/Art & Self/My Life

Work or Pleasure?

February 25th, 2015 → 5:04 am

“I do perceive here a divided duty.” – Othello

I’m headed to New York this weekend for a work conference.  But I will also be visiting with friends and family while there.  Which one should I spend more time doing – business or pleasure?  That will be the question…

Filed under: Blog & Self/My Life


February 22nd, 2015 → 6:31 am

“This place is too cold for Hell.” – Macbeth

It snowed here in St. Louis again this weekend.  Things have been bitterly cold this past week and I’m hating winter right now.  But every time I think about complaining I feel guilty.  Boston is getting it so much worse this year.  Poor Boston.  I travel to the East Coast for a conference next weekend – here’s hoping I don’t get snowed in and stranded there!

Filed under: Blog & Other

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

February 19th, 2015 → 5:21 am

“‘Tis the soldiers’ life
To have their balmy slumbers waked with strife.”  – Othello

God bless our veterans.  I hope this latest federal legislation will help them.

Filed under: Blog & Other

GDP-Indexed Bonds

February 16th, 2015 → 5:31 am

“I’ll have my bond.  Speak not against my bond.
I have sworn an oath that I will have my bond.”  – Merchant of Venice

Warning: This post is a little wonky.  Greece’s new government has suggested a number of reforms to help the country get out from under its punishing austerity measures and recover their economy.  One of the best is an old idea which I have never understood why it hasn’t gotten more traction (but then again, I am not a macroeconomist) – GDP-indexed bonds.  Such bonds pay more when times are well, but also automatically pay less when times are tough, which 1) only makes sense, 2) reduces debt-to-GDP volatility, and 3) prevents pro-cyclical fiscal policy that exacerbates both busts and booms.  Since we know that creditors will have their bonds, why not make them smarter bonds?

Filed under: Blog & Economics/Money

Guest Post – College’s Priceless Value

February 13th, 2015 → 5:27 am

“Stay a little.” – King Lear

What’s the most transformative educational experience you’ve had?  Newspaper columnist Frank Bruni was asked this question recently, and his answer?  Hearing these three little words of Shakespeare, spoken with depth, anguish, and emotion from a teacher in college.  Wow.  Shakespeare can be hard to understand sometimes, but done right, the bard’s words are transformative.

Filed under: Blog & Literature/Theatre/Art

Guest Post – Good Lovers Lie

February 10th, 2015 → 5:53 am

“Therefore I lie with her and she with me
And in our faults by lies we flatter’d be.”  – Sonnet 138

This was quoted in an op-ed in The New York Times over the weekend, in support of the argument that it is ok to lie to your loved ones.  That love is more important than truth, so lie a little.  I’m not sure I buy the argument, but the quote is a good one.  Indeed, the entire sonnet is a good one, so here it is in full:

When my love swears that she is made of truth
I do believe her, though I know she lies,
That she might think me some untutor’d youth,
Unlearned in the world’s false subtleties.
Thus vainly thinking that she thinks me young,
Although she knows my days are past the best,
Simply I credit her false speaking tongue:
On both sides thus is simple truth suppress’d.
But wherefore says she not she is unjust?
And wherefore say not I that I am old?
O, love’s best habit is in seeming trust,
And age in love loves not to have years told:

Therefore I lie with her and she with me,
And in our faults by lies we flatter’d be.

Filed under: Blog

ShakeDic: caitiff

February 7th, 2015 → 6:12 am

“Alas, poor caitiff! …
I never knew a woman love man so.”  – Othello

caitiff – a contemptible or cowardly person; a wretch

Use in a sentence:  Like was so difficult on the Plains that good, hard-working men and women turned into caitiffs that broke the law just to survive.

Seriously, I have got to start using these words in every day conversation.

Filed under: Blog

Black History Month

February 4th, 2015 → 5:24 am

“What wound did ever heal but by degrees?” – Othello

It is Black History Month here is the U.S., where we celebrate the history of African Americans.  As I am also reading Othello this month, I wanted to come up with a quote from that play to honor this celebration.  It wasn’t easy!  But the above quote reminded me to be optimistic about racism in the U.S. – a wound that is, hopefully, even if slowly, healing by degrees.  Happy Black History Month everyone.

Filed under: Blog & Other

ShakeDic: cod’s head

February 1st, 2015 → 6:25 am

“She that in wisdom never was so frail
To change the cod’s head for the salmon’s tail.”  – Othello

cod’s head – slang for penis

tail – slang for pudendum

There’s some controversy over what Shakespeare is actually saying here, that the woman would never exchange a lackluster lover for a sexy one?  That the woman is wise enough to choose a sexual partner becoming to her?  That the woman is smart enough to be first in a lowly group than last in a higher group?  Simply that the woman has common sense?  I don’t know, but there’s clearly some sexual connotation there somewhere.  “Tail” we still use today – but “cod’s head”?  These antiquated slang terms are cracking me up.

Filed under: Blog & Literature/Theatre/Art