On April 23rd, No Anti-Stratfordists Welcome!


Urgency Day: 483

500 Things Item 18: Vacancy Light Sensor

  • Left behind by previous owners
  • Never opened/used
  • Zero parting pain
  • Donate or yard sale

Happy Shakespeare Day!

Officially, the 394th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. Unofficially, but by tradition, the 456th anniversary of his birth. Neat, huh!

The unofficialness of his birth date has to with our only having official documentation of his baptism on April 26, 1554. But during this time, it was customary to baptize babies three days after their birth. Hence, the very cool opportunity to celebrate both biographical details conveniently on one rockin’ honorificabilitudinitatibus day (really, Love’s Labor’s Lost, 5.1.41)

His birthday is, of course, a matter of some controversy, as are so many things about the Greatest Genius Who Has Ever Lived. And why is it that so many small-minded people make much ado about nothing over birth certificates!

And what the heck does all this have to do with the light sensor I listed today?

Initially, it suggested to me using a quote such as “What light through yonder window breaks.” But then I realized the function of the sensor is to turn off the lights in a vacant room, which wouldn’t have helped poor Romeo much.

So then I thought, maybe a quote about deception, since the point of the device is to deceive people that you are home when you are traveling. Try, say, Iago, “I am not what I am.” But upon closer inspection of the package, that’s not at all the function of this sensor. It simply turns off the lights if you leave a room and forget to turn them off. Only I was deceived there.

Well, I am all for controlling the electrical “ghost load,” the number of unnecessarily plugged-in and/or turned-on electric devices in our homes and offices.

Fellow Earth-Day-is-EVERY-Day Believers:

The ghost load is a huge drain on the grid!

And Lord knows, I am the member of our household who acts as the light police, turning off abandoned lights and chastising, admonishing and encouraging my housemates to do the same.

Good, a ghost quote then. “I’ll make a ghost of him that let’s me,” wherein I am making ghosts of left-on lights? That’s a stretch, and of course, Hamlet meant “hinder” when he said “let.” Yikes.

Oh bloody hell. I tell you what. Celebrate Shakespeare Day however you wish. With a favorite quote or movie version of a play, or any of several Star Trek references (my fave: the gang rehearsing scenes from Midsummer in “Time’s Arrow, pt. 2”), some Bard-inspired music (I love Mendelssohn’s Midsummer and Prokofiev’s R&J), and most certainly with a toast:

It’s not enough to speak, but to speak true.

(Midsummer again— recently revisited, so on my mind)

Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.

(All’s Well…)

I wish all of you, and especially my friend Cable,

a very happy Shakespeare Day.


2 Responses to “On April 23rd, No Anti-Stratfordists Welcome!”

  1. Sean Says:

    I will tell Cable about this Special Occasion when he gets home from school, if I can maintain his attention long enough. His practice this week has been to read Harry Potter before school, on the bus to school, between assignments at school, on the bus home from school, after school until dinner and in bed until he falls asleep. In this way he has progressed from infant Harry on the Dursley doorstep to Felix Felicis in just five days. Oh what a work is Cable.

    We had quite the Shakespearean evening last Friday when we took in “Romeo and Juliet” at the newly renovated Klein Theater. Great fun, and the boys were rapt. The sword fighting had Quinn pedaling in his seat.

  2. Donna Says:

    As you probably know, I too am the chief of the light police in my family. I still believe in the importance of not wasting energy, but recently I had an experience which makes it hard for me to continue with this practice — although I will. Jim and I were driving along the Dulles access road when we passed a large building under construction. At this point the building resembles nothing so much as a multi-floor parking garage, one with every floor well lit by dozens of bare bulbs. (I’m sure you’ve seen this kind of thing.) In view of the electricity being wasted there, and in full knowledge of the amount of electricity soon to be used by the various tons of office equipment left running 24/7, I wonder if it really matters if I shut off the sixty watt light which might otherwise be left on in my living room making my home look warm and inviting from the street. I think the answer is “no”, although in the aggregate my puny gesture plus yours, plus everyone else’s adds up to something. And let’s not forget that I still recycle cereal boxes, for all the good that does. It’s the principal, of course. But it harkens to so many other environmental issues and concerns which will never be solved by the individual, but only by the corporate or governmental action, at least that’s what I’m beginning to hear and that’s what I believe.

    But I’ll turn those unused lights off anyway.


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