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Thursday, June 16, 2005

Happy Bloomsday!

Happy Bloomsday!

Today, June 16th, is Bloomsday or the 101st annual celebration of the single day in 1904 chronicled in James Joyce’s Ulysses.

STATELY, PLUMP BUCK MULLIGAN CAME FROM THE STAIRHEAD, bearing a bowl of lather on which a mirror and a razor lay crossed. A yellow dressing gown, ungirdled, was sustained gently-behind him by the mild morning air. He held the bowl aloft and intoned:

-- Introibo ad altare Dei.

James Joyce fans celebrate Bloomsday worldwide by reading Ulysses aloud, following the footsteps of main characters Stephen Dedalus and Leopold Bloom through Dublin, pretending they have actually read Ulysses, or just getting knackered on pints of Guinness at the local pub.

Truth be told, Mr. Scriblerus never made it past the Lestrygonians chapter. I did skip ahead to the famous Molly Bloom yes” soliloquy with the naughty (circa 1922) bits:

... I was a Flower of the mountain yes when I put the rose in my hair like the Andalusian girls used or shall I wear a red yes and how he kissed me under the Moorish wall and I thought well as well him as another and then I asked him with my eyes to ask again yes and then he asked me would I yes to say yes my mountain flower and first I put my arms around him yes and drew him down to me so he could feel my breasts all perfume yes and his heart was going like mad and yes I said yes I will Yes.
I’ll pick up Ulysses again, I promise. And I’ll read it right through this time. Right after I get through the Brothers Karamazov...

You can buy Ulysses at Amazon. Or you can read etext Ulysses in its entirety on the web at Online-Literature or Bibliomania. You can speed read the BBC’s cheater’s edition here. You can delve into the scholarly minutia here. A copy of the Cliff’s Notes is available here. You can buy the DVD, it’s faster than reading. You can watch the classic scene in Rodney Dangerfield's Back to School. You can find a place to buy a pint of Guinness here. Or read about contemporary Irish author Roddy Doyle’s backlash against Joyce-Dublin-Industrial complex.

Until Bloomsday next...

History, said Stephen, is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake.


At Friday, June 17, 2005 at 9:30:00 AM EDT, Blogger Sluggo said...

'kissed me under the Moorish wall'

Oh, mama.

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