Friday, November 23, 2012

Shakespeare and the monkey

Once upon a time, in a kingdom far away, an actor and an actress met and fell in love. Eventually, they had a daughter who they named Elizabeth. When Elizabeth was young, she promised she would never be an actress like her parents. As time passed, however, a strange sequence of events resulted in Elizabeth being thrown into a season of Shakespearean dramas. To her great surprise, she loved acting. Shakespeare was her favorite because there was so much substance to his plays. She decided that she wanted to become a professional Shakespearean actress.

After many failed audition attempts, Elizabeth secured a place with an acting troupe. It was not quite Shakespeare but she was confident that she could use (and continue to develop) her talent which would help her be a better actress. As with any company, the first few shows were rough but Elizabeth thought it just needed time. Unfortunately, time only made things worse.

Eventually, Elizabeth realized the awful truth. She had been hired by a circus and turned into a performing monkey by a powerful magician. She had been reciting monologues and blocking scenes when all they wanted her to do was stand on a ball, pat her head, and rub her tummy. At first, Elizabeth tried to resist. They might have turned her into a monkey but she knew who she really was. She continued on, trying to share Shakespeare with those who visited the zoo. Unfortunately, the zookeepers were not happy with this. They had to find a way to make her stop.

The answer came with a simple strip of duct tape. The zookeepers placed this tape across Elizabeth-monkey's mouth and sent her back into the cage. Poor Elizabeth was heartbroken. After rejecting acting for so long, she was finally ready to perform and was now restricted to eating bananas (yes, there was a mysterious way she still could eat  them even with the duct tape.. it's a fairy tale... don't question it)  and scratching her head and armpits.

One day, a wiser monkey came to visit Elizabeth. This monkey knew that Elizabeth was not really a monkey. The wiser monkey told Elizabeth that the zookeepers did not really want an actor but only a monkey.  She knew that she was better than that but she also had to accept that all the zoo wanted was a performing monkey and they would keep finding more ways to punish her when she tried to do more complicated performances. Elizabeth was still sad but she agreed to pretend to be a monkey. It was simply not worth fighting about because the zookeepers would always win.


In other news, I still love extended metaphors and Happy Thanksgiving (one day late).

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