Archive for May, 2011

Your Move: Thursday Morning Riddle

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

The Shakespeare Teacher is out. It’s your move.

Today’s challenge is the Thursday Morning Riddle. The answer is:


RING is correct. Way to go, Bill!

Now, you write the riddle.

Entries should follow the same format as earlier riddles: four lines of anapestic tetrameter with rhyme scheme AAAA (all four lines rhyme). Riddles are written in the first person (i.e., from the point of view of “Ring”). Semicolons are used to mark a change in word meaning. The word “Ring” should not be in the riddle, in any form.

Entries are due by June 1, and a winner will be chosen after that time.

UPDATE: Contest won by Anonymous. See comments for the riddle.

Thursday Morning Riddle

Thursday, May 19th, 2011

I’m a Star Wars ground vehicle moving on feet;
A pedestrian strolling or crossing the street;
I’m Chuck Norris on TV, policing a beat;
And I’m George Bush’s name with initial complete.

Who am I?

UPDATE: Riddle solved by Bronx Richie. See comments for answer.

Thursday Morning Riddle

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

I’m to wait on each word; to place laundry to dry;
I’m to put up a picture; to loiter nearby;
How a judge passes sentence for convicts to die;
When a surfer’s on edge; or a skater’s up high.

Who am I?

UPDATE: Riddle solved by DeLisa. See comments for answer.

Thursday Morning Riddle

Thursday, May 5th, 2011

I’m the place where a trailer connects to your car;
Ask for rides with your thumb if you’re not going far;
I’m to pull up your pants; a great plan, I can mar;
And I’m slang to get married, if that’s where you are.

Who am I?

UPDATE: Riddle solved by Elizabeth. See comments for answer.

May the Fourth…

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

…be with you.

Today is Star Wars Day, and Shakespeare Geek and Bardfilm made sure that Shakespeare got in on the action. For my contribution… No, I’m not going to compare Luke Skywalker to Hamlet, at least not today. But I would like to share how the Star Wars franchise has made teaching Shakespeare just a little bit easier.

A series of three related dramatic works is called a trilogy. Four works make a tetralogy. Early in Shakespeare’s career, he wrote a tetralogy of plays about the English kings: Henry VI, Part One; Henry VI, Part Two; Henry VI, Part Three; and Richard III. The plays cover the span of events from 1422 to 1485, and are referred to collectively as the first tetralogy.

A bit later (though still early in his career), Shakespeare wrote another tetralogy of plays about the English Kings: Richard II; Henry IV, Part One; Henry IV, Part Two; and Henry V. These plays were set earlier; they run from 1399 to 1415. This was the second tetralogy.

This seems pretty straightforward, but it could often cause confusion, even for graduate students. The second tetralogy takes place before the first tetralogy? How can that be? Why did he do it that way? Wait, which was the first tetralogy?

Everything changed with the release of Episode One: The Phantom Menace. Now, when I explain that Shakespeare wrote the first tetralogy before the second, but the second takes place before the first, I can enjoy their momentarily confused looks. I know I can just add “You know, like Star Wars…” and instantly see the clouds lift and light shine into the room. Since the second Star Wars series, everyone understands the idea of a prequel trilogy.

So thank you to Star Wars for making a hard thing easy. May Henry IV be with you!

Blog Log

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

Last week, I participated in a blogging project sponsored by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, who encouraged bloggers to post about the influence Shakespeare has had on our lives. They’ve linked up all of our contributions on one page, and it’s worth checking out. Whether you’re a fan of Shakespeare or not, it’s exciting to read people who are passionate about something writing about how they became passionate about it.

Also, be sure to check out this fantastic song parody from Bardfilm. I missed it among all the birthday excitement, but found again via a nod from the Shakespeare Geek.

In post-birthday blogging news, I’ve been asked to write a monthly post on using data for school improvement for both the company I work for and our partner organization. If you want to get a glimpse into what I actually do for a living – anagramming passages from Shakespeare doesn’t pay what it should – check out my first installment here or here.