Book Hippo

Friday, September 27, 2013

Reading Shakespeare

One thing you have to remember when reading Shakespeare is that it was a different time. In Elizabethan times, the main teachings were of paranoid style of thinking. Everyone was out to get you in Elizabethan times, or so they taught everyone. So you can look for paranoia in Shakespeare or look at how he handles psychology and motivations and see how a paranoid audience would have thought about what he was saying.

Another thing, social ranking was everything. It dictated who walked into a room before whom and all the seating arrangements of a dinner party. Elizabethan people were supposed to stick up for their rank, too, but in a certain way. They also had to have self-control or decorum.

If an old man of inferior rank walked in before a young man of higher rank, the young man would say, for everyone to hear, "I'm very happy to let my aged friend in before me." Therefore letting everyone know that he understood his rank and was letting others know, while having the self-control and manners to let an older person take precedence.

This is another thing you can look for in Shakespeare and if you find a character who does not have self-control, you know that his audience would have seen that as very bad and unworthy. Hint: look for royal or high born people who lose it. The audience would have been scandalized.

I've got to read Shakespeare again myself, it's time to re-learn the Bard.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Feelings Of September

Strange, I can't remember many facts about September from when I was a child in White Rock, BC. I must have started school each year. I can remember going to school but actual September days are all fogged over.

Halloween memories are still there but for September, nothing. I can't even remember what the weather was like. Today I was thinking how I would like to be on the beach again, it's so sunny in Ottawa and the sun feels hot through the window, but was it hot enough when I was a child to go swimming? I just don't remember.

Sometimes I took  my dog down to the beach. Cindy loved to swim and fetch sticks that I would throw out into the ocean. So dogs could swim.

There's no way to swim outside in Ottawa in September.

It's like this start-of-school year month is a gear-up for everything else that goes on the rest of the year. Halloween, Remembrance Day and Christmas/New Years to name a few.
I find this month slow and at times, boring. The other night I had so little to do, I was trying to recall the Brady Bunch lyrics. You  have to be pretty bored to think up that.

If Mom were still alive, she'd say, "why don't you write?" But I'd already written.

The one thing that's still with me about September from my childhood, is that it feels new. It feels like a beginning. Like something possibly wonderful is going to happen at any moment.

I guess then the only thing I recall from Septembers of my childhood are the feelings about it. Which is nice enough.

My e-book, The Mountain City Bronzes is still available at the MuseItUp Bookstore

Friday, September 6, 2013

Manning Park and Other Places

I always loved camping so I'm sorry now that my knee won't let me hike through the woods anymore. As a child my family loved to go to Manning Park to the east of Hope. The only sad part of driving to this park is that you have to drive over the Hope slide. I couldn't pass over that place without wondering about all the people under me.

What were they thinking in those few minutes when they were suffocating to death after the mountainside came down on them? It is still a haunting thought to me.

I loved Manning Park because of the various points of interest it had. One was the stone bowls. Made by the action of water, these rocks were hollowed out from the inside, making what seemed like bowls on their sides. One would think they would make perfect houses for hobbits, if such a creature existed.

The mountains of BC are great of course, and we spent our share of time in Manning Part climbing up hills, the smaller mountains. I never did ever climb a real mountain. I'm too afraid.

As a child, I always wanted to be the type of person who could do anything, but no, that's not me.

Another place I liked was Barkerville in BC. This is a tourist town but there is camping there, although I think there is a hotel, too. We bought real rock candy for a penny and saw a music hall show with the performers dressed as they would have been in the 1880s.

I later learned that my brother hated Barkerville. I didn't know this, we spent time in the town's cemetery and I thought he was enjoying himself.

The best thing that happened was when it rained so hard that a little bird flew under our awning of our tent to protect itself. Mother said that we should be quiet and no one make a move to touch it, that would be cruel. So we all waited for the rain to end and then the bird flew off.

That was the good part of those heavy canvas tents. They were good protection, even if they did weigh about twenty pounds.

So I'll have to live with my memories unless I can ever afford to go to Algonquin Park's Arowhon hotel. It costs about $1200.00 a week, not too bad for what you get, and that's all meals free and full use of all activities, canoes etc. It's something to look forward to.