Went to lunch with my friend Jay, and the conversation never lagged, as usual. I had an excellent salad at Cafe Intermezzo. Their food is always excellent. Plus, I had a strawberry lemonade, which is always one of the perks of going to Intermezzo.
Now I keep thinking that I should work on the columns/articles for Shannon, but I'm tired (I was going to write "fagged," but it seems pretentiously British. It's just the first word that came to mind.) from all the scrubbing.
I helped Shannon with some other stuff for his work this afternoon, just thinking up Shakespearean characters who suit the categories tinker, tailor, soldier, sailor, rich man, poor man, beggar man, thief. It made me realize how few Shakespeare plays I know reasonably well (and how little I remember even them): Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Henry V, Richard III, The Tempest, King Lear, Hamlet, Othello, Much Ado About Nothing, The Taming of the Shrew, Romeo and Juliet, and Macbeth (who I suggested as a thief -- he stole the crown, after all). There are others I've seen performed (Titus Andronicus, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, The Merry Wives of Windsor, and Henry IV Part 1) or read (Troilus and Cressida and The Merchant of Venice), but which I remember almost nothing about. And there are numerous plays with which I'm entirely unfamiliar, even well-known ones like Antony and Cleopatra, Measure for Measure, Love's Labour's Lost, As You Like It, All's Well that Ends Well, and The Winter's Tale (about which I know only that it contains the odd stage direction "Exit, pursued by a bear"). I'd like to read more, but I'm not sure if my concentration is up to Shakespeare right now. I'm not up to Jane Austen, after all, so Shakespeare is probably right out. Someday. I used to love to go to the Shakespeare Festival up in Ashland, Oregon. I went a few years in a row and saw a play or two every day while I was there. It was intense, but fabulous. I saw my favorite production ever of A Midsummer Night's Dream there. They actually made me laugh at the rude mechanicals, who usually make me groan. That's also where I first encountered Tom Stoppard's stuff. He's my favorite playwright now. I wonder if he's come out with anything new in the past several years. I've been out of touch. Does anyone happen to know if he's written anything new?
Anyway, I'm off to read some more of Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell. I can't believe how long this book is. It's gotten more interesting these past 100 pages or so, and I'm well past the half-way mark, but it's still unbelievably long. Shannon has read several books since I started this one. I'm surprised the book was as popular as it was, given the length and the slowness of the plot.
Perhaps I'll go admire the clean bathroom floor. I'm so proud!