Today, you are a member of… Non Alignment Pact

Yes, Members, today, back in 1896, the French got their first taste of absurdist theater in the the form of Alfred Jarry’s Ubu Roi (sometimes translated as ‘King Turd’) where a minor fatcat blooms into a fantastical king- and subject- killing bore only to be named Tsar, get attacked by a bear, and then use the bear’s carcass as a means of escape. It’s like nine Shakespeare plays rolled into one big banana peel. A riot broke out at the premiere (though, c’mon, it’s a theater crowd in the gilded age. The audience, jammed into bustles or strangled by stiff, high collars, and likely miffed that all the swear words they could use for the play are actually in the play itself, probably just demanded their money back by tapping loudly on the box office with their canes while the ladies flapped hankies about). Subsequently, Jarry moved on to a career in puppet theater. Point is Members, this week your plays are gonna get absurd, which is a good thing. After all, without satire and pataphysics, the non-alignment pact between a society and its bores remains unmocked.

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