Monday, March 10, 2014

My kingdom for a horse

Oh dear me, it's been a while, hasn't it? For shame. Apologies, apologies. Quick updates:
  • Running: ran an awesome half marathon in Phoenix at the end of January. Weather was perfect: I'll take dry desert air over the snow we've been getting any day.
Fell in love with Saguaros when out west. AMAZING plants. This baby was well over 100 years old.
  • Writing: wrote a guest blog for my vet friend Dr. Elliott Garber on how to make extra moolah from freelance writing. Thanks for the opportunity, Elliott!
  • Reading: completely immersed in Stephen King's 11/22/63 right now. I haven't read any of his stuff for a while but I remember now why I like him. I just can't put this book down.
  • Vetting: a really cool report from The Horse came out about fossil evidence that prehistoric horses suffered from laminitis. I just found this fascinating. 
Also, as spring is just around the corner, I set my sights yet again on a perennially elusive target: a horse. It seems impossible around the DC area to find a reasonable horse, a reasonable barn, or a reasonable person who knows a reasonable horse or a reasonable barn. I am left much like Richard III at the end of the play, screaming: A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse!

Seriously, I actually saw Richard III at the Folger Theater in DC two weeks ago. I can't decide if this or King Lear is my favorite Shakespeare play.  I haven't read Richard III in quite a while but I was easily reminded during the performance of the incredible language old Bill uses. 
Grumpy Cat quoting Shakespeare??? For more animals go here
Woe to all reptiles and amphibians in ye olde days of yore, since insults were flying fast and furious invoking "snake" and "toad" most commonly. Of course, look no further than the witches over the cauldron scene in Macbeth and you'll have an exotic animal//zoo vet's worst nightmare: newt, bat, dog, lizard, wolf, and even baboon enter (or at least their body parts do). Oh yes, and spiders.

If you want to get really heavy into the Bard's animal imagery, well, go someplace else. I love me some Shakespeare, don't get me wrong, but when the discussion turns to the symbolism of "light versus dark" in Othello, for example, I'm gone.

But I will point out one interesting fact that you have my permission to use at your next cocktail party. Shakespeare uses the word "animal" only eight times in all his works. Much more commonly, the words "beast" and "creature" are used instead. According to the Old English Dictionary, the word "animal" really only comes into common vernacular at the end of the 1500s. If you want a further breakdown on this, look here. If you're over Shakespeare since the days of reading it aloud your sophomore year in high school, look here. (Don't worry--it's just pictures of kittens. Kittens NOT reading Shakespeare, that is. Although that would be cute too, don't you think?)


  1. Thanks again for sharing your experiences, Anna!

  2. Loved the guest blog & 11/26/63 totally sucked me in too. Awesome book.