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Bus Story: Imperial Ire

August 16, 2013

It’s a crowded ride this mid-August morning, and we sit or stand, tapping our phones or reading, as our carriage driver navigates the perils of the road on our behalf. Through the jumble of suited attorneys, messenger-bagged designers, and heavily backpacked developers, she can be seen, sitting like royalty. Or, more accurately, former royalty. There is something regal in her posture and expression; an expectation of being waited on appears on her face as surely as lipstick and rouge. Her outfit was expensive decades ago, but is faded and ill suited for the day. Her hair, perhaps once a lustrous auburn, has lost any body or depth and has streaks of iron grey mixed in with what is now old-tree bark brown. Her eyes, which have retained a sharpness and imperious aspect, are pouring over a worn copy of “King Lear.” She is subjecting the play to intense scrutiny, and, from time to time, whips out a small bit of pencil, and scribbles notes on the pages. The vehemence with which she writes and her clear agitation with the story has convinced me. I expect that Goneril, the mad king’s eldest daughter, will have some harsh words for Bill Shakespeare when she next sees him scribbling away at the local Starbucks.

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From → Bus Stories

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