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Shakespeare

Hat Rights

Posted on 2008.06.07 at 00:24
Current Mood: fullfull
Current Music: Escape - Rupert Holmes
I want to share one of my favorite things I’ve ever written. I hadn’t thought of it in a couple of years, but CC came across a copy of it today. Here’s the setup:

When CC first moved to Chicago in 1997, she was devoting a lot of time to making and selling hats. For a time, the main way she was attempting to sell her wares was at gatherings of the Society for Creative Anachronism, commonly referred to as SCA. If you’ve never heard of it, I really hope you click on that link and find out about them. Though I’ve never been a member myself, I’ve known a lot of people who were, and they tend to be pretty hard-core about it. I’ve also attended several SCA gatherings as a guest, and it’s an entirely different experience from any Ren Faire I’ve ever seen. Essentially, it’s a whole parallel world existing right beside the one you think we live in!

Anyway, back to hat selling – CC asked whether I would be willing to write and design a flyer to be passed out at these events that would help to publicize her products. I used the venerable Bodoni font on buff paper, which gave it a nice old-fashioned look. The main text was as follows:

SHALL YE WEAR A HAT?

Consider The Following Accounts
And Thy Answer Will Be Apparent

EXCERPT FROM THE DIARY OF JOHN HARDWICKE
…a great flocke of shore-birds did flye o’er us. As the only man with the sense to have worn a hat upon that morn, I was likewise the only man whose pate was spared the foul effluvium of these self-same airborne creatures…

EXCERPTS FROM
“A BRIEF HISTORY OF SOUTH HAMPTOM”
…upon that day, my father bade me journey to London, in order that I might make introduction of my self to a man with whom my father had an acquaintance of long standing … we came upon a square, wherein a crowd of many score, densely packed and begrimed, had gathered for a stoning … I enquired upon the offence of the condemned. A squire of the village intoned that [the condemned man] had appeared at Kenton Downes with head uncovered most impiously … upon an upbraiding from this very squire, did declare that he cared neither for the fit nor fashion of such a cranial encumbrance … The squire spoke in jest that perhaps the impact of stone upon the poor man’s head would be softer than the calf’s skin of the squire’s own impressive hat…

EXCERPT FROM A LETTER WRITTEN BY BISHOP
EDRIC WORTHING TO THE EARL OF CHESBORO
…tho Our Almighty Creator hath fashioned us men and women, and tho the contrast between us be both our greatest unifier and our greatest divider, still have we one precious truth that neither gender may evade, that Our Almighty Creator would have our heads covered in the wares of the milliner, in protection of our selves, in kindness to the eyes of our brothers, and in piety to Him…

EXCERPT FROM TRADITIONAL IRISH FOLK SONG
…No I’ll never love you
No never, never that
For my one true love
Will surely wear a hat…

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