Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching! Let’s celebrate with Red Velvet Cupcakes…and a Shakespearean insult or two!
Hello, February! Even though February is absolutely frigid here in New York, it just so happens to be one of my favorite months. That’s because February involves college basketball. Sure, March (and March Madness) is better, but February is when the regular season wraps up. It means rivalry games and jockeying for the best seeding possible in the conference and national tournaments to come. February also happens to bring Valentine’s Day, or Single’s Awareness Day as I used to call it back in my bachelor days.
While the world is full of red balloons and “I love you” cards, I thought I’d go in a bit of a different direction here. We’re going to talk about insults. More specifically, we’re going to talk about how to insult other people…Shakespearean style. (After all, no-one knows how to insult someone like a balding guy wearing a skirt!)
I read a bunch of Shakespeare back in high school. I actually kindof enjoyed it…but then again, I’m also kindof a nerd. I had to memorize the prologue from Romeo and Juliet and repeat it in front of my 9th grade English teacher. I still remember it. “Two households both alike in dignity. In fair Verona, where we lay our scene.” Correction: I still remember some of it.
But back to the insults! If a coworker gets on your nerves, why not deliver up a nice Shakespearean slam. Something like:
- “I was seeking for a fool when I found you.” –As You Like It
- “There’s no more faith in thee than in a stewed prune.” –Henry IV, Part I
- “Go, ye giddy goose.” –Henry IV, Part I
- “Thou hast in thy skull no more brain than I have in mine elbows.” –Troilus and Cressida
- “You are as a candle, the better part burnt out.” –Henry IV, Part II
Ok, let’s take a break and talk about a classic Valentine’s dessert, shall we? Red Velvet Cupcakes. As a Southern boy, I grew up around red velvet cake. It’s delicious, and so appropriate for both Christmas and Valentine’s Day. (Although if you ask me, it’s appropriate for any day ending in “y”!)
I pulled out my recipe for Classic Red Velvet Cake and transformed it into these Red Velvet Cupcakes. And let me tell ya…these bad boys didn’t last long. I topped these cupcakes with a classic cream cheese frosting, and then took them into the curling club. I put them on the table, turned to talk to a friend and then turned back to see nothing but crumbs. Mission accomplished!
- “You ratcatcher.” –Romeo and Juliet
- “You scullion, you rampallian, you fustilarian.” –Henry IV, Part II
- “You’re a fishmonger.” –Hamlet
- “Your bum is the greatest thing about you.” –Measure for Measure
- “More of your conversation would infect my brain.” –Coriolanus
And with that, I leave you with a whole array of possible Shakespearean insults. Drop one of these into conversation, and I promise no one will make fun of you again. (Well, they might…but it’ll be behind your back.) Seriously, though, happy (early) Valentine’s Day to everyone out there. Go grab a Red Velvet Cupcake (or two) and dream up who in your life needs to be slammed Shakespearean style!
And one last insult for good measure. (It also happens to come from my all-time favorite Shakespearean play.)
- “Where gott’st thou that goose look?” –Macbeth