My Dearest Kendrah,
Just when I thought I had reached the zenith of Geekdom, I outdid myself once again.
Saturday night, Kathryn, Andrew, Sam (my brother, not the Hobbit) and I went to see Ben Bagby’s performance of the first thousand or so lines Beowulf. In Old English. With harp accompaniment.
I’ve been trying to see this guy for three years. He’s been in town twice before and I kept missing him. (Stupid theater job making me work on Saturday nights!). I bought my tickets in September and checked on them every few weeks to make sure they were still there (safe in my wooden mirror box.). Sam and Aragorn were having a few beers before the show and the king decided he wanted to tag along. Even though he didn’t have a ticket. He and Sam reminded me that he can remain unseen when he chooses and that no one would notice if he stood quietly in the back. Now it makes me wonder how many invisible people are sneaking into MY theater without tickets, but I digress. Sam and the King picked me up after I worked the matinee and we met K&A at the theater. Of course we went early to hear the professor of Medieval Literature lecture on the poem!
The performance was everything I hoped it would be and more. Dr. Bagby is amazing! I kept getting distracted by his performance and forgetting to read the supertitles. Every once in a while I’d realize I’d lost track of the narrative thread and have to remind myself to read where we were. My OE verbal comprehension skills still suck (even with Eowyn tutoring me), but I was able to recognize the proper names and assorted nouns. And I made a point to listen for the alliterative patterns in the lines even if I didn’t understand the words and I’m getting better at that. A good time was had by all. My brother was chanting “Bagby, Bagby” during the standing ovation. Aragorn kept calling for an encore, but I told him Dr. Bagby probably didn’t know “Lament for Theoden”. Andrew and I are hoping Bagby’s DVD becomes available soon. Check him out at http://www.bagbybeowulf.com/index.html
So, there you have it. I’ve out-geeked myself yet again. My one consolation-I did not arrive at the theater in garb. The same could not be said for others in the audience. At least it was GOOD garb...
Well, I’m off to watch more Dr. Who. Stones of Blood arrived today…there are druids in it!
Your Affectionate Friend,
PS-I would gladly lend you my OED book, but I think we might be too busy dealing with Harry Potter in July for you to read it!