Friday, April 11, 2008

On why my posts usually start with "On"

Someone asked me recently why I start the majority of my posts with "On".

You can thank/blame Nicolo Machiavelli for that. His classic, "The Prince", flawed as it is, is one of my biggest literary influences. In fact, it's what got me interested in writing as well as politics!

In the edition I have, most of the chapters begin with the word "On", however subsequent translations use the word "Concerning" as opposed to "On". Others use "Of", instead of "On". I like "On" because it requires less typing than "Concerning".

So, essentially, I'm imitating my biggest influence.

The way he described his daily life while in exile sounds a lot like my typical day:

"When evening comes, I return home [from work and from the local tavern] and go to my study. On the threshold I strip naked, taking off my muddy, sweaty workday clothes, and put on the robes of court and palace, and in this graver dress I enter the courts of the ancients and am welcomed by them, and there I taste the food that alone is mine, and for which I was born. And there I make bold to speak to them and ask the motives of their actions, and they, in their humanity reply to me. And for the space of four hours I forget the world, remember no vexation, fear poverty no more, tremble no more at death; I pass indeed into their world."
Having said that, I don't think Jimmytufish, Rosencrentz, Monominto, and Grumpy_Old_Man (of New Winnipeg fame) would appreciate being called "the ancients"... ;)