Feb. 6th, 2011

I was in The Stopped Clock for Trivia Night. That’s always a humiliating experience, since the cross-section of history I’ve encountered is a very small slice of the sheer volume of history out there. I counted nine questions concerning obscure matters of the Dark Ages and none of the modern era, which I think is unfair but what the hell. I did have some good beers I’ve never tried, including a microbrew that Edgar swears will one day be copied by the Trappists.

There were a couple of guys in the corner having a conversation, and because I was sitting near them, I couldn’t help but hear what they were talking about. Or at least that’s the excuse everybody in The Stopped Clock has taught me to use; if that bar were a nation, eavesdropping would be its national sport. Actually, now that I think about it, The Stopped Clock probably meets most of the qualifications for sovereign nationhood, although its chief means of defense is not being there when you want to invade it, which is kind of cheating.

So I was completely accidentally overhearing what these two guys were saying, and that was this:

“We have so much in common,” hissed the one with the curly black hair and the neat mustache. “Hatred of tyranny. A desire to serve our people.” He leaned forward dramatically. “The courage to do what must needs be done.”

“You know nothing about me,” the older guy with the toga and the Justin Bieber hair countered. “All you think you know about me comes from a play written more than sixteen centuries after I died. You’re comparing yourself with a fictional character, Booth.”

The younger man straightened his stage military uniform. “I know enough about your real life, Brutus. I know, for instance, that we both must commit a murder. I say: let’s trade murders. Criss Cross!”

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