Ham After Ham

The question is, now what? Hamlet closed four days ago, and my life is settling back into its standard routine, give or take a snow day or two. I can still bask in nostalgia for awhile, but this blog needs a raison d’etre if it’s going to continue.

Originally, I conceived of H2016 (or CBUHamlet or whatever makes a good hashtag) as merely one part of a more ambitious project, investigating what Hamlet might mean here in Canada — hence the cutesy blog name. But when I started the blog a year ago, I realized I didn’t have all that many deep thoughts on the subject, so I switched to an even more ambitious line-by-line analysis of the play. Then, inevitably, the production overtook my life, and eventually eclipsed the blog pretty much altogether. Now that the eclipse has passed, which thread should I pick back up again?

The line-by-line analysis felt comfortable and mostly fun, but it’s never going to go anywhere beyond this site. Maybe, over time, I’d collect a following of like-minded Shakesnerds, and we could debate and discuss and direct imaginary productions in our heads. Maybe I’d inspire others to do similar projects — a line-by-line King John blog next door, a Sonnet-a-Day site, whatever. Maybe those sites already exist, and I just haven’t bothered looking for them.

And the original Maple Danish hypothesis? I want to tackle it, I really do. I feel like, if I ramble on long enough about Strange Brew and Slings & Arrows and Kill Shakespeare and Keanu Reeves, then somehow it’ll all coalesce into a definitive statement about…Shakespeare? Or Canada? Or both? The trouble is, I’ve felt that drive for cohesion before. I felt it about Hamlet itself, and guess what? Some puzzles never get solved. I think I did right by Hamlet, but my production wasn’t an answer to anything about the play; it was only a different way to rephrase a collection of 400-year-old questions.

Maybe that’s enough, and if I do pursue Maple Danish, maybe that will be worth publishing someday. Or maybe I could just let this blog be what other blogs have been in the past — that is, whatever I need them to be on any given day. OR I could acknowledge that blogging is SO 2010, and double-down on my Twitter time. Hell, a line-by-line analysis of Hamlet would be much more digestible if it came in 140-character bites.

I don’t know yet. But I don’t think the rest is silence for me. Is there anybody out there? What do you think I should do next?

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