Culture

Happy Birthday, Shakespeare: Things that Might Surprise The Bard

When William Shakespeare was born 451 years ago, I’m quite certain there was no way of knowing just how famous this child would become. I mean, we all believe our children are special and capable of great things, but just imagine one of your offspring being celebrated as the greatest writer in the English language four centuries after his or her death.

Shakespeare was versatile as both a poet and a playwright. His works, still constantly in production to this day, are the most frequently staged plays in the history of the theater.

Not only that, but think about how difficult it is to keep a literary career going during one’s lifetime let alone to continue to sell books long after the author has passed away. In a Forbes article from 2005, it was estimated that Shakespeare sells 10 million copies of his plays worldwide making a conservative $15 million annually. Alas, no family members are collecting on those royalties these days.

Just in case these monetary facts about his longevity fail to astound The Bard of Stratford-on-Avon, perhaps the following examples about his continuing influence upon literature would make Will sit up and take notice.

Yes Scotland or Better Together: Trying to Make Sense of the Scottish Independence Referendum

In less than one week, the Scottish public will be going to the polls to make a very important decision about the future of their country; whether to remain a part of the United Kingdom or leave to become an independent country.

If you haven’t heard about the impending Scottish Referendum, here’s a short informational video the BBC put together last year which covers the basics, in less than sixty seconds, followed by our attempt to break down what’s going on.

The Comic Side of World Cup Soccer

In case you hadn’t heard, the FIFA World Cup Finals is in full swing in this year’s host country, Brazil. Teams from around the globe are battling it out on the football pitch aka soccer field to determine who is best at kicking a ball into a net.

Don’t get me wrong, I like the fact that people are coming together to celebrate their passion for a common sport. It’s just that there’s so much of it. The finals phase is comprised of over 60 matches that are played over a month’s time.

British Telly Chefs: Who Would You Trust to Make Your Thanksgiving Feast?

In case you’ve lost track of time, Thanksgiving is quickly approaching, a holiday which holds many fond memories and a lot of anticipation for me.

It’s a great celebration for several reasons. As the name suggests, it reminds us to be thankful for all the good things in our lives. I find Thanksgiving to be less stressful than Christmas; one single day designated for families to gather together and gorge on the most delicious meal of the year. We also get to watch a parade that features giant character balloons and Broadway musical numbers. Only in America, right?

I don’t know if the Brits are jealous of our feast-based holiday, but I do know Americans miss the holiday terribly when they’re away from home. Let’s say you found yourself in the UK over the Thanksgiving holidays, no family and no kitchen facilities of your own. Who would you choose to prepare this most important repast, the meal that would make you feel less homesick on this special day?

Jamie? Gordon? Nigella, you say? They’re all fine and good and granted they are real food preparation professionals. Nonetheless, the telly chefs I have in mind tend to be a tad more amusing.