March 24, 2006

Whan that Aprill with His Blogges Soote

Who’s the most prestigious writer to have a blog? Neil Gaiman? William Gibson? No way, it’s Geoffrey Chaucer – that’s right, author of The Canterbury Tales and Troilus and Cressida, leading light of Middle English, soldier, diplomat, and customs-house official, and most recently host of “Geoffrey Chaucer Hath a Blog.” Mr. Chaucer channels his amiably tart voice through an unknown present-day parodist of genius: writing an advice column, “Aske Chaucere, parte the firste”; giving counsel such as, “And thus, take two pintes of hagen dasz dulce de leche, a ful seson of buffie the vampyre slayre, and calle me in the morninge”; assembling a list of medieval online abbreviations (WTF = Whatte the swyve?”), and relating a Brokeback Mountain-like tale concerning himself and the anonymous author of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight: ““I WOLDE I KNEWE HOW OF THEE I MIGHT BE QUITTEN!”

This will make you want to master the old tongue. Read it all, all you English majors, it’s a lot funnier than “The Nun’s Priest’s Tale.”

And besides, this morning I’m going to be spending 2-1/2 hours in an outdoor line to register my kids for day camp – and it froze last night, by far the latest freeze I’ve ever seen in these here parts.