I hope my readers had a good weekend. Sorry for my silence on Friday, but I was nowhere near a computer. Travalon and I took the day off of work, and in the morning we went up to the Special Collections room in the university library. There had been a display of Shakespeare folios, but they had taken it down. However, they let us look at a second folio, from 1623, and the printing was crazy. For example, on the big title pages they never used a W but two VVs, so it looked like there were plays called “The Merry VVives of VVindsor” and “All’s VVell that Ends VVell.” However, on the smaller running titles on the other pages, they spelled it with a W. To look at this book we had to put everything into a locker except our cell phones, so I did take some pictures of that. I forgot to take a picture of the title page that said “Romeo and Ivliet.” On the smaller running titles it was spelled “Juliet,” but on one page they would have a regular J, and on the facing page they would have a J with a line through it, like an F. Then the librarians let us page through a gardening book from 1618, and that had crazy printing too, and wildly inconsistent spelling. Then Travalon and I drove to Racine, where we met Tiffy and went to a pub called Toad Hall for some lunch. We went to two taverns from the book, Ivanhoe’s and the Brass Monkey, and they were both beautiful. The bartender at the Brass Monkey used to be Tiffy’s masseuse, and Tiffy had thought she left town years ago, but she’s back doing massages, so she gave Tiffy her card. How crazy is that?
Saturday Travalon, Tiffy, and I joined Rich at St. Patrick’s for the consecration to perpetual virginity of a friend of ours. It was a lot like a wedding, only instead of bridesmaids she had “presenters” who were also virgins, dressed in black, and of course there was no physical groom. She wore a white dress like a bride marrying a human husband. Afterwards there was a reception with hors d’oeuvres and cake, but no DJ or band or anything like that, and she didn’t want any presents. Her life will continue pretty much the same way it has, except now she has a ring on her finger to symbolize her solemn vow. Then Tiffy, Travalon, and I took Rich out for a birthday dinner at Bellitalia, and the waitresses sang “Happy birthday, Ricardo” to him as they gave him a slice of cake with a candle in it.
Yesterday Tiffy, Travalon, and I tried the brunch at the Shamrock, which is a gay bar by the Capital. I had been told they have a good brunch with very strong mimosas, and that straight people were welcome there, and that all seemed to be true. Then Tiffy and I went to the Garden Expo, where we bought fancy chocolate and watched a cooking demonstration, before we went to a Wisconsin Baroque Society concert at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church. I particularly liked the Italian soprano duets. Meanwhile, Travalon was at a tropical party with a Jimmy Buffet cover band that was a fundraiser for the Clean Lake Alliance. It was Rich’s actual birthday yesterday, but he was supposed to leave town to attend his mother’s surprise 90th birthday party on the East Coast. However, the weather out there is very bad (tons of snow), so they canceled the party and he had dinner and brownies at his house. Kathbert, Jilly Moose, Luxuli, and Prairie Man came too, and Travalon stopped by after attending the Badger basketball game. They lost their first home game this season, which is kind of amazing if you think about it. They are one of the top ten programs in the country this year. Maybe they will go really far in the tournament – wouldn’t it be fantastic if they won it all?