All the World’s a Stage

When I arrived on planet earth I learned that all the best roles had already been taken. Martyrs for a worthy cause crowded the top of a list called Those Who Shall be Renowned Forever and Ever for Their Good Deeds . Everyone else fell into numerous descending lists, until it got down to Bottom of the Heap, where I’m going to land if I don’t figure out really fast where I belong.

By culture and circumstances, I am told that it’s good to be humble; people who brag on themselves, they say, brag on a fool. But how are other people to know what a fine person I am? I tried to yield to this rule about not bragging, and turned to false modesty. However, others seemed to agree with what I said when demeaning myself, as if it were really true.

Meanwhile, somewhere in the back of my head is a joker who loves to see me trip and fall. “Too big for yore britches, eh?” it says. “Got yore come-uppance now, didn’t cha!” I do not know if this is the echo of a voice I’ve heard before or one I merely imagine. I do know I sometimes wonder if it’s what people are actually thinking.

Although I am a stumblebum I will not be an imposter. There is only one solution I can think of to my dilemma of how to live on a world where all the best parts are performed on a stage.  I shall remain in the audience and cheer the actors on as I observe the Comedies, Tragedies and Histories. I will applaud wildly and yell “bravo!” when the acting is great, and when it is horrible I will throw rotten tomatoes. Stereotypes, I know, but if I were a great, original writer I would be on the A List, with great reviews, until I either exhausted my talent or turned to drink and the audience began throwing rotten tomatoes, and then—–

So, instead of being a main player I will relish my bit part. For the audience participates too, and that must be what I came for afterall. To observe and then to report on what I see.


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