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Thou doth protest too much...or how Jock and the Shakespeare Festival are like oil and water.

Dec 08, 2014 -- 3:19pm


The Alabama Shakespeare Festival Octagon:

Home of Ye Olde British Bare Knuckle Boxing

This weekend my wife Jessica, her friend Mindy, and I made our way to the Alabama Shakespeare Festival in Montgomery for a showing of "A Christmas Carol". If you haven't attended a play there, I suggest it. Beautiful facilities, talented actors, great plays, culture on tap, etc. etc. Unfortunately I have a history with the Festival dating back to high school. I have always been a guy who didn't take high art/culture/society to seriously, so I might have been destined to run into trouble. Two incidents forever put me on the most wanted list in the Festival Ushers' Emergency Operations Center. I was curious to see how I would be received or if I could go unnoticed. Here's what happened so many years ago:

The first was the worst. (HA! It rhymes. I'm a poet and didn't know it. Eat your heart out Shakesy) We were at the Festival to see a play. A friend of mine snuck in a Nintendo Gameboy, not to play during the play, but to pass time before hand. I borrowed it, had the sound turned all the way down, and was playing with 10 or more minutes left before the play started. That's when I heard it, a gasp, and a semi muted angry, "JOCK!" I turned to see my teacher looking at me very upset with an usher in her ear whispering and pointing her long finger of the law in my direction. The Gameboy was confiscated with extreme prejudice by my teacher and my friend was ticked at me. After the play on the bus, my teacher approached me with Gameboy in hand and said, "I am very..." At this point most people would let their teacher finish their sentence and not finish it for them, but I'm not most people. I completed her sentence "..dissappointed in me?" That's what she was going to say, because she paused, looked more frustrated, quickly searched her mental thesaurus and said, "..upset with you" or something to the effect. I made it out unscathed with a bit of a threat about future trips.

The second incident was not as bad, but it was when I was sure they were out to get me. The very next year, we were waiting to enter the theater. We weren't inside yet! I was chewing gum, because I didn't know it was a crime, and I heard the same type exclamation, "JOCK!" These days people yell my name because they are happy to see me, back then, not so much. I looked and who do I see but an usher in my teacher's ear waggin here finger at me again. My teacher that year was nicer about it because it was a minor offence, but ever since then I know the Usher Shocktroopers have been after me. Thankfully I have made it out without any other incidents so far, but we have an understanding.




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