Behind the Hedge

artist, writer, scholar of Old English poetry . . . freelance everything. I just sort of do stuff . . .

Recent Blog Posts

On Certain Events Along the Shores of ‘Nnalubaale, Separated by a Century
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History is almost always written by the victors and conquerors and gives their viewpoint. — Jawaharlal Nehru, The Discovery of India. In his account of his circumnavigation of ‘Nnalubaale (now known as Lake Victoria), Henry Morton Stanley describes a moment of tension and violence on the La...
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Bread Recipe for Michael
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Bread Recipe for Michael
My friend Michael in this time of plague isolation had a bit of trouble with one of Jamie Oliver’s bread recipies, so, I’m sending her my recipe that makes pretty much all of our bread at home, plague or no plague. Feel free to try it yourself and let us all know in the comments [R...
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A Meditation on “The Ordinal of Alchemy”, A Real Book of Magic
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It was a large room with three big windows and it was lined from floor to ceiling with books; more books than Lucy had ever seen before, tiny little books, fat and dumpy books, and books bigger than any church Bible you have ever see, all bound in leather and smelling old and learned and […]
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Concerning a TEDxAntwerp Talk About the Global Monetary System
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Two issues I will take with the Tedx talk a friend posted to Facebook a few days ago about the global monetary system is that: a) Yes, the banks create fiat currency to finance loans/innovation seen as profitable and repayable. They don’t grant €100K to every potential furniture maker or we...
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A Brief Note on Cordwainer Smith’s “The Dead Lady of Clown Town” & “Under Old Earth”, Raleigh’s “Pilgrimage”, and the Adjective in Biblical Hebrew.
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But there was another voice somewhere, a voice which grated like the rasp of a saw cutting through bone, like the grind of a broken machine still working at ruinous top speed.  It was an evil voice, a terror-filling voice. Perhaps this really was the “death” which the tunnel underpeople had mista...
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A Midwinter Midsummer Night’s Dream
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The Malachite Company has been doing Shakespeare in Edmonton for four winters now, and what a treat it has been to have Old Strathcona’s grand old Holy Trinity Anglican Church filled up with light and laughter and warmth and a few bits of Elizabethan tragedy each January. Last night the fou...
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The “Merry Devil of Edmonton” and “The Witch of Edmonton”
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The following is adapted from the introduction to my adaptations of The Merry Devil of Edmonton and The Witch of Edmonton. Out of Shakespeare’s Shadow That fellow from Stratford casts a long, virtually impenetrable shadow over the Elizabethan and Jacobean stage. Few today would be able to t...
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On Larry Niven’s “Flash Crowd” and the internet mob.
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I like to reread the science fiction I first read when I was a teenager.  I find interesting the perspective a life lived in history gives to the artifacts of youth.  Recently I reread Larry Niven’s collection of short stories The Flight of the Horse and was particularly struck by “Fl...
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“The Two Gentlemen of Verona”: wherein the Freewill Players demonstrate how to “tweak” a problematic Shakespearean play.
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No spoilers here. Like the texts of a number of Shakespeare’s plays (The Merchant of Venice, The Taming of the Shrew, Othello), The Two Gentlemen of Verona is a little uncomfortable for audiences today.  How can one respond to a happy ending that sees the victim of attempted rape reconciled...
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De gustibus . . .
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De gustibus . . .
I sat in my “office” this afternoon. A couple strolled by with their young child on their way to the public pool down the avenue in the woods. Several hours later they strolled back, wet towels on shoulders, dripping hair plastered to foreheads, smiles on faces, strung out along the s...
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