Seth Brown: 'Bard-Mitzvah: A Shakespearean Travelogue'


Act 1, Scene 1 - Train

MACSETH: Woe betide me! Though my cousin I do love, I regret that we must travel to her batmitzvah, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

LADY MACSETH: Though fury thou may have, sound thou mayest not. This is the quiet car, so screw your courage to the sticking-place, and your lower jaw to your upper one.

MACSETH: Wouldst that I could do so, but the rocking of the train torments my innards.

INNARDS: Double, double, toil and trouble; Stomach burn and acid bubble, Nauseating constant motion, serves to brew this sickness potion. When combined with lack of sleep, surely this shall make him weep.

MACSETH: So fair and foul a train ride I had not seen.

Act 1, Scene 2 - Restaurant

MACSETH: Dear family, I drink to the happiness of everyone at the table. Now we can eat the alfredo of human kindness.

SIR TOBY BRUCE: Thou art welcome. Dost thou think because thou art visiting, thou shalt receive cakes and ale?

BONNIEQUO: No cakes, but takest thou one of these chocolates; a handfulle I have grabbed for later repast.

MACSETH: (taking one) Uh... methinks these are definitely crayons, and not chocolates. Canst thou tell a hawk from a handsaw?

BONNIEQUO: Near the mints they lay! In faith, I thought they were chocolates!

Act 2, Scene 1 - Hotel

MACSETH: (knocking on door to hotel room) Hello?


MACSETH: (attempts door) I can't do thus, thy door is locked; at a hotel I shan't be shocked.

BONNIEQUO: Oh yeah. Forgotteth I. I shall get the door for you. (opens door.)

Act 2, Scene 2 - Hotel (later that evening)

MACSETH: Knock! Knock!


MACSETH: Thou art not helpful.

Act 3, Scene 1 - Car

PRINCE HAL: I am well-pleased to be here with my two brothers!

MACSETH: And we with you. Now we must hie to the temple for the batmitzvah!

MARC GRANTONY: Fear thee not, I know the way, it is just a right turn ahead.

SIRI: If thou wouldst make thy voyage deft, just up ahead thou shoudst turn left.

MARC GRANTONY: Strange, but I'll do so. I just know we must turn right in a mile.

SIRI: If timely arrival you would earn, in two miles make once more left turn.

MARC GRANTONY: I think I have taken us to the wrong city

MACSETH: Confusion now hath made his masterpiece.

Act 3, Scene 2 - Temple

MACSETH: We have finally arrived! And just in time to see our fair cousin's ceremony! (sits down in pew)

RABBI: Today this girl becomes a woman! But first let us sing the entirety of the Torah!

MACSETH: I should have used the bathroom earlier. To pee, or not to pee, that is the question -- Whether 'tis nobler in the pew to suffer the stings and sorrows of a swollen bladder, or to stand up amidst a sea of prayers.

REBECCA: I have chanted my Torah sections, and the message I take away is kindness to animals. It is why I am vegetarian, because we must be kind to animals. Please join me for lunch, we will serve chicken.

MACSETH: 'Twas ever thus, what's fair is foul, and fowl is fare.

Seth Brown is an award-winning humor columnist, author of "From God To Verse," and thinks all the world's a stage. His website is


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