Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Glory of Rome

I learned, as my Father and many others have, that while it is shaped into a very boring subject in school, reading about the non-curriculum approved portions of history is a fascinating and interesting adventure.

One summer I decided to read through my Chronicles books to review a chunk of the history of western civilization...

Mostly because I still don't know everything yet.

The chronicles books go through history by profiling the times and lives of individuals. The period I surveyed was covered by: the Pharaohs, the Roman Republic, the Roman Emperors, and the Popes.

A nearly quest quelling collapse occurred during the Emperor book

It looks serious, doesn't it?

As I read, upon completion of each section I would flip forward and back, through history so to speak, to check the timelines and see how each ruler fit into the grand scheme of things.

I tended to read them just before going to sleep, making me often tired and goofy (well, goofier) to begin with.

As I worked my way through the Emperors, I kept seeing a name later on in the book.


It doesn't matter how it should really be pronounced, because every time I read it, in my head I instantly heard Howard Morris from History of the World Part 1 announcing:

"All pay heed to The Emperor Poopyness!!"

Then I'd laugh for twenty minutes, be unable to continue reading.

This happened several nights in a row...

Read a little
Think about Emperor Poopyness
Laugh for twenty minutes.

I was anticipating never completing my planned self-education at that rate, forcing me to devise a plan to calm myself.

Each Emperor had vast lists of names, and I thought I could find a less humorous one to keep in my head. I scanned through his section searching for my salvation.

Reading through his impressive array of names and titles, my head was suddenly filled with the voices of throngs of Romans.


Then I laughed for forty minutes.

After what may have well been decades of this stick-slip form of reading, I finally reached his section.

Fortunately his reign took place during the "Year of Six Emperors" when the Praetorian Guard was whacking a ruler every couple of weeks.

(Actually that was really only fortunate for me...not so much Emperor Poopyness and his fellow whack-ees.)

His section was very short, and since I was reading in the afternoon, outside on a bright summer day, I managed to get through it with only a few uncontrolled snickers.

I was overwhelmed with joy that I could continue my serious pursuit of learning without being reduced to hysterics.

Anticipating expanding my knowledge base of these proud and respectable ancient people, I happily turned the page to the next section, which began:

"In contrast to the senatorial dignity of Pupienus..."

Then I fell off the hammock.

No comments: