Ivanhoe Revisited

From the archives:

     I have been reading, and thoroughly enjoying, the adventurous, charming, romantic, and utterly preposterous Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott. It is most charming in its antique language, and nowhere more preposterous than in its putting such charming language in the mouths of untutored, illiterate rustics of the twelfth century. Still, it is delightful, and so I proffer a questionable attempt at imitation:

     Being homeward bound, two leagues out, I was assailed by a six-legged varlet who, in the manner of a cowardly ambuscade, thrust afore I could parry; and his rapier, though diminutive, did pierce my light armor in that self-same spot as our Lord and Savior received His holy wound upon the Cross. Failing to give a mortal blow, however, the dastard chose not to prolong his visit to the neighborhood, and afore I could send his infidel soul to the nether world, he escaped, true to the cunning and false valor of his race, leaving me to apply to my wound an ancestral poultice of palliative herbs, and thus to re-mount my middling born, yet noble steed, who bravely made his way homeward.


     Six miles from home, a yellow jacket or wasp stung me. I put some chewing tobacco (which I carried just for that purpose) on the sting, got back on my bike, and rode home.


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