Dinner party

My sister recently issued a hypothetical question (she loves to do that) involving which 5 celebrities or historical figures, living or dead, you would invite to a dinner party. Not only must they be interesting to you, but they must have common topics on which to speak and must be able to get along with each other… for example, inviting Oscar Wilde and Winston Churchill could either be fantastic (because of their quips and witticisms) or terrifying (if it turned out they wore similar cravats or failed to greet each other with the proper panache).

It’s taken me awhile to come up with my celebrity dinner party, but here goes:

1. Jon Stewart. Because if conversation gets out of hand he can mediate and direct to a better, more common ground. I’d also ask a lot of questions about the guests he’s hosted over the years. Also he is teh sexc.

2. Damian Kulash. Not just because of my overwhelming crush on him coupled with crippling hero worship, but because he is a genuine brilliant soul. Also artistic. Also gorgeous. But he has to have shaggy hair if he’s allowed at my party.

3. Ellen DeGeneres. Why I tend to be aiming toward talk show hosts here is unknown, but as with Stewart, DeGeneres has wit, charm, a sense of humour, and the ability to steer conversation. She also has a broad range of knowledge which would lead to interesting conversations.

4. Oscar Wilde (sans Winnie). His prose is among the most haunting, his wit also razor-sharp, his imagination boundless. I can only imagine the clever put-downs he’d give me over my cooking. Scratch that, this is a catered affair.

5. David Sedaris. I will make him recite his “Six to Eight Black Men” in honour of the season, and we will bond over being short and having lots of siblings.

This would be the best party ever.

Edited to add: If there were any more space at the table, or one of the guests couldn’t make it, Betty White would be next on the list. Because she’s a strong woman, embraces her age instead of fighting it, has a career that keeps picking up speed, and she’s a total baller.

Pedantic rantic

Today in my Shakespearean Sonnets class, a gentleman referred to Shakespeare’s language as “Old English.” In response, I attempted to make his brain asplode with my eyes. Thankfully my professor saw me glaring death-darts at the student, and helpfully stepped in with “Actually, Elizabethan English is quite modern. It might be a little beyond the grasp of our tongues, but it’s certainly not as old as English gets.”

And this the week after exploring agenbite of inwit, which isn’t even Old old English, but rather, Middle, and still about 300 years before Shakespeare’s time. If only people took more time to study the history of English

To be continued…

I have to leave for work right now but I sent my sister her interview questions. I’ll post them later on tonight.

In the meantime, here’s some poetry by my other sister (the 9-year old):

Bella wears a dress.
It is pink with polka dots.
She is a monkey.


Defense of (bad) Poesie

I feel like I need to justify the two posts immediately below. The second one, with the Spice Girls reference in the title, was initially written about my now-ex-boyfriend and was full of florid metaphysical conceits of the garden as it pertains to fertility. Obviously I scrapped that. Gross. I still kind of liked it though – that part about the roses was initially part of the garden conceit but was a clever pun on the fact that I have Asian flushing syndrome blush a lot and am cute and all that and look nothing like a tomato when sauced.

So my ex and I met working at a restaurant, and he was a bartender (hence the nod to the spirits) and was nothing like a garden at all. Anyway, I began writing this poem to him after being struck by inspiration reading Donne, then was struck with mental constipation about two quatrains in. We broke up in the interim.

Then I started “casually seeing” another bartender. (It is important to note that this is how I get all my drinks for free. Follow my example, kiddies.) Though I’d scrapped most of the sonnet, I still had this one quatrain and the increasing urge to do something with it. Then by grace of U of T’s Topics in Shakespeare: The Sonnets and a goose quill pen my sister got for me at the Globe Theatre, the sonnet was completed. About a different bartender. Bartender The Second. Who is also nothing like a garden. Which is ok now since neither is the poem.

HOWEVER. The first sonnet, directly below this post, with the Scissor Sisters reference in the title, was written today with a pen full of angst. Apparently my friend with benefits, The Bartender II, doesn’t like his coverage plan. Has anybody else ever found a guy who said he was getting too much? I feel like I should stuff him and put him in a museum. Anyway so I wrote this sonnet because I was feeling Shakespearean after class today and there was my quill pen, all shiny in some parts and inky in others. And feathery in most parts. And then this sonnet was created.

And as an addendum: in both poems, substitute the word “love” for something of a more… unromantic ilk. “Love” felt more Shakespearean/Petrarchan (in the case of the first poem) and worked with the metre. Inaccurate, but it makes the poem sound squishier and gives it altogether more sappitude. Which is what I was aiming for, even though it was off target.

It’s a bitch convincing people to like you

More bad poetry from the wellspring of my inner fourteen-year-old’s angst ridden misery.

The love I bear thee, beneficial friend,
exceeding quite the level granted me
would seem to hearken our good friendship’s end
as flame burn’d with too much intensity.

You turn your eye from my poor, seeking gaze.
You hear not embassies of pleading want.
You leave me quite, and take your leave for days;
My strong advances fade from hale to gaunt.

Initially, you had return’d my love
with equal fervour, ardour, insistance,
’til more than your desire, mine soared above
and your desire increasèd our distance.

The steward of my body once before
shall be desire’s outlet nevermore.

A weekend love is all it was

Oh noetry – bad poetry!

My love does press the roses to my cheek
with spirits, or by spirits spoken true;
A sleeping world in gilt of morning dew.
A nighttime ritual, by night to speak.

To you I do by catchèd breath impart
the trials and the vict’ries of my lot;
The age that parts us sunder, heed ye not:
You know still all the content of my heart.

And yet you know, and I, we will be twain
inevitably in the course of time;
So to you now I dedicate my rhyme
in order that my memory remain.

So when our courtship be yet at an end,
Look on these words, and know me still a friend.