Welcome to Part Nine of our summer diversion in Tales for Our Time - The Prisoner of Windsor, my contemporary inversion of the Anthony Hope 19th century classic in which an English gentleman has to fill in for a Ruritanian king at his coronation. Since then, Ruritania has lurched through fascism, communism, civil war and transnational administration, so the chap who would have been king finds himself in London having to cover for an English "gentleman".
I want to add my thanks to your words about allowing time for joyful pursuits, even if it's just a few minutes a day. Today, I hopped in the car with my camera, drove away from my stifling city, and explored parts of the state I had never seen before. It was refreshing and invigorating--and not a mask in sight!
Good for you. And then Jennifer adds:
I had The Prisoner of Windsor playing through my speakers as I drove, so I was laughing all the way! Thanks again, Mark.
Thank you, Jennifer. Glad to hear it contributed to the day's joy. In tonight's episode Rudy Elphberg gets an invitation to Windsor Castle - and leans more about the United Kingdom's summer of discontents:
A large non-virodistant demonstration was camped outside: The After-Life Movement. A nice girl called Roslyn, who had very stylishly threaded her nose ring through her face mask, handed me a leaflet: The After-Life Movement was only ten euros to join – they didn't accept pounds sterling because that was the currency of slave-trading and white supremacism. Unfortunately for Roslyn, pounds was all I had. 'Is it about the afterlife?' I asked. 'Heaven? The angelic host?'
She explained that no, it was a movement for human extinction because only after human life had ended could the planet recover from the environmental devastation man had inflicted upon it. 'I've had my tubes tied,' she said, with a come-hither look. 'I can't face the thought of bringing a child into this world. And, for every one unborn British baby with an irresponsible First World carbon footprint, a Somali mother can have ten kids. Are you doing anything tonight?'
'Why? Would you like to see a movie?' I asked.
'We're having a meeting,' she said. 'We're suing the Church of England for hate speech because "Go forth and multiply" is a specific actionable threat of violence against the planet.'
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