After careful and painstaking deliberation, I have decided it is time to disclose my secret identity that I have kept shrouded behind my newspaper editor facade. In real life, I am Mr. Fun Guy.
I know this secret identity may be hard for some to believe, like the reporter goddesses who shall remain anonymous ( I will cleverly refer to them as Sarah and Ana… Ray doesn’t count). My clandestine identity is supposed to be a shock, otherwise it wouldn’t be a secret (I looked that up).
I was forced to unmask Mr. Fun Guy after attending the final Seattle Opera performance of Gaetano Donizetti’s “Mary Stuart,” or “Maria Stuarda” if you prefer Italian snooty.
After the March 12 performance I am sure others noted how my merry meter was pinned at cheerful exultation. I have been in such a state since that night I was compelled to write about the uplifting life lesson Mr. Donizetti gave the world with “Mary Stuart.”
I go to all the Seattle Opera performances, but I wasn’t familiar with Mary Stuart and I didn’t expect it to be packed with all those feelings and emotional things I have no names for and don’t know how to look up in the hard-words dictionary.
If there has ever been an opera jammed with everything from celestial foie gras to sin that leads to that capital H place, it is Mary Stuart.
It has love, jealousy, more love, a lot more jealousy, Catholic and Protestant meanies, political intrigue and double dealing, a pile more love and jealousy, more political stabbing in the back and a few doses of lying. A few more buckets of love and jealousy are added and mixed with religious excuses for reprehensible behavior and, finally, Elizabeth I has Mary Stuart’s head chopped off – ostensibly to protect her political power, but really for love and jealousy.
By the end of the performance I was nearly jubilant. I realized at that point my secret identity was out on display to the world. Drat!
The story of Elizabeth I and Mary Stuart is a great read on its own. Mary, the Queen of Scots and her kind-of sister, Elizabeth, the daughter of King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, (illegitimate according to Mary) are in a war of wills over the British crown and Leicester, the earl both are in love with (do women really fall for guys named earls? Just checking).
Does this story remind you of anything? Like the current race for the president’s apartment and some of our local political plot lines.
Fortunately we don’t see a lot of swinging axes in modern races, but there are more than a few hatchet jobs being executed.
Isn’t it uplifting to see how little things change? The words are moved around and given new meanings, but the sum is the same – a mess. The theory of governing looks dandy until people and those darn feelings and emotions get involved.
Since the night of March 12, every time a political story or issue has come across my desk, I catch a glimpse of Elizabeth and Mary standing stage right… listening. I do wonder if Elizabeth was haunted by her actions. Winning can carry a heavy price.
The moral is: Mary Stuart tore the mask off Mr. Fun Guy and proved you don’t mess around with a jealous sister dressed in souped-up clothes with shoes fit for a Martian, who is carrying a jumbo-size ax.