Sunday, July 8, 2007

The Return of Classics Corner

In the mid-nineties, as I was settling into Seattle and getting Real Change going, I decided to make a point of having a life outside my work. The best idea I could come up with on how to do that was to cultivate an interest in ancient lit, and find a group of folks who shared my obsession. Some people play bridge. Some people golf. I looked for people who wanted to discuss Thucydides. Call me a freak.

One by-product of this fateful decision was my Classics Corner column, which I wrote for Real Change from 1999-2004. This was a literary column of sorts in which I referred to myself in the first person plural and tried to be funny while discussing current affairs and, mostly, ancient Greek literature.

It doesn't sound like it would work, but it did. People started buying the paper for the column, and three years later I still meet people who ask for it back. My twin daughters came along in March of 2003, and within a year it was clear some things had to go. These included practicing the guitar and banjo, teaching myself ancient greek, and writing the damn column.

I put the old columns up on a website, but no one really seemed to care or notice. When the renewal notice came this month, I decided to let it go. But today, as I scraped moss off my roof and meditated on my love of the Northwest, it occurred to me that I could put all those columns on a blog for FREE!

So I did. The Classics Corner blog now lives, and I put a link underneath my profile. Today I put up most of the columns from 2000. It was bittersweet to come across a column where I prognosticate that G.W. Bush could not possibly become President. A few favorites include a column on King Lear, a short history of the town of Sappho on the Olympic Peninsula, and the Socratic proof that Slade Gorton has no soul. As I find time, I'll get all the Classics Corners I ever wrote onto the blog, even the ones that sucked.

It's still hard for me to imagine me taking up this column again, but this, I suppose, moves me a step closer.

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