Happy Birthday Shakespeare!

April 24th, 2017 → 6:07 am

“Who is it that can tell me who I am?” – King Lear

No one, but since I’m not one for unfounded conspiracy theories, I’ll just assume Shakespeare was Shakespeare and celebrate the joy of his birth (which was sometime this week).  Happy birthday Shakespeare and thanks for the beautiful literature!

Filed under: Blog & Literature/Theatre/Art & Other

The Handicap’s Lament, Part V

April 20th, 2017 → 6:35 am

“It would be argument for a week, laughter for a month,
and a good jest forever.”  – Henry IV, Part I

When my six year old son runs off with my cane so I can’t chase after him to clean up his toys, is he being cruel, or inventive?  Should I yell at him, or laugh with him at my own helplessness?

Filed under: Blog & Other & Self/My Life


April 16th, 2017 → 5:34 am

“God be praised, that to believing souls
Gives light in darkness, comfort in despair!”  – Henry VI, Part II

Happy spring holiday everyone, be it Easter, Passover, Ramanavami, or any of the others I’m forgetting to name.

Filed under: Blog & Other

Dutch Schooling

April 12th, 2017 → 5:30 am

“Those that do teach young babes
Do it with gentle means and easy tasks.”  – Othello

A Dutch friend of mine forwarded me this article on Dutch schoolchildren.  Apparently they rank #1 in well-being, while American children rank #26 (out of 29 rich industrialized countries studied).  I’m not surprised, nor am I surprised by the general recommendation to ease up on young kids.  What I was surprised about was the lack of regular homework Dutch children are assigned until their early teens.  Their early teens!  My son would die of joy – too bad we’re not Dutch.

Filed under: Blog & Other

The Handicap’s Lament, Part IV

April 5th, 2017 → 6:02 am

“A friend should bear his friend’s infirmities.” – Julius Caesar

As I near the end of my latest convalescence, I appreciate everything everyone has done for me.  From car rides to hot dinners to humorous conversations in bed, it has been heartening the myriad forms of outreach that have come my way.  I really do appreciate it.

At the same time, this latest convalescence has reminded me yet again how difficult other people’s infirmities are for most able-bodied people to face.  The problem appears to stem primarily from unfamiliarity, but there is also a distinct lack of empathy, and perhaps even a tinge of fear, wrapped up in the confusion as well.  Whatever is going on, stemming from whatever cause, it has led me to write a short essay/self-help guide for how to visit with a disabled friend.  It’s titled:  “Please, Just Listen.”

Filed under: Blog & Other & Self/My Life


March 31st, 2017 → 5:49 am

“A kind [hug] he hath.  A woman would run through fire and water for such a kind [hug].”  – The Merry Wives of Windsor

My son gives the best hugs in all of St. Louis.  I’m certain of it.

Filed under: Blog & Self/My Life

The Handicap’s Lament, Part III

March 27th, 2017 → 6:01 am

“O opportunity, thy guilt is great!” – Lucrece

Having a handicap involves quite a number of paradoxes.  You are happy for the health you have, though not exactly grateful for the infirmities you bear.  You are prepared to keep your troubles to yourself and not bother other people, but then when you truly need help no one is around.  You are motivated to stay strong and not dissolve into emotion, but then, the inner heartache festers without light and attention.  You are quite honest when you say you are proud of your handicap and that it made you the strong, empathic person that you are, but then late at night when no one is looking, you sometimes wonder what your life would have been like without the experience.

I suppose life in general is full of paradoxes, but those for the handicapped stand out, I believe, in a more pronounced way.  The contradictions are sharper, but then, so is your existence.  Whether this is good or bad is yet another paradox.

Filed under: Blog & Self/My Life

Philosophical Writings

March 23rd, 2017 → 5:38 am

“Adversity’s sweet milk, philosophy.” – Romeo and Juliet

There was an author in the 1990s that I just loved, Alain de Botton.  Somehow, I lost track of his work and simply assumed he’d stopped writing.  I discovered this week that in fact, he is still writing, on religion, on love, on aesthetics, and somehow I had just missed it.  I look forward to ordering some of his latest books; I only hope they are as good as The Consolations of Philosophy and How Proust Can Change Your Life.

Filed under: Blog & Literature/Theatre/Art

The Handicap’s Lament, Part II

March 19th, 2017 → 5:47 am

“Would you have me
False to my nature?  Rather say I play
The [wo]man I am.”  – Coriolanus

Over my life I’ve had people question my injuries.  Friends who tell me to just get going!  Family members who tell me things could be worse.  Co-workers who clearly think I’m faking things.  It’s frustrating.  And disappointing.  But it does make one wonder, are there levels of handicapped’ness?  Where some people are more justified than others?  At base this is ridiculous, of course.  It’s like asking if there are levels of racism.  Or levels of being raped.  People who make such judgments clearly don’t get it at all.  But what is worse is that I find myself playing to such ableism at times.  Accentuating my limp so I don’t get accused of using a disabled placard falsely.  Why do I even care?  I need to have the strength to play the woman I am.  And idiots can just take it or leave it.

Filed under: Blog & Self/My Life

Pi Day

March 14th, 2017 → 9:22 am

“Thrice to thine, and thrice to mine,
And thrice again, to make up nine.
Peace!  The charm’s wound up.”  – Macbeth

There aren’t many quotes in Shakespeare involving numbers, certainly none involving Pi.  But in my investigations I did learn that three and nine were considered magic numbers in Shakespeare’s day, where superstitions were common.  Here the famous three witches of Macbeth are using 3 and 9 in their spell casting.  Happy 3.14159… day!

Filed under: Blog & Other