Hamlet and the To-Be

If to do were as easy as to know what were good to do, chapels had been churches, and poor men’s cottage princes’ palaces. (The Merchant of Venice. Act 1. Scene 2.)

Act 3 Scene 1 (continued). Down the hall, Hamlet soliloquys all over the place. There’s seven of these in the play, and he’s only on the fourth one. Man, does that guy talk.

Hamlet talks and talks and he talks and he talks. It’s almost as if he wants to talk Claudius to death. There are times when we want to tell Hamlet, “Just shut up and get on with it.”

It’s not like he doesn’t say some smart things. He does. After all, he is a college student, majoring in philosophy. It makes you think that maybe he’s trying to show off what he’s learned at Old Wittenberg U.

To be or not to be. That sounds a lot like Norman Bates. You know what I mean? To smother mother or not to smother mother? We know how that one turned out. Not only for Mother but for Janet Leigh as well.

When Hitch went to Janet and told her about the shower scene, she said, “You’re all wet. My career will be all washed up.”

To be or not to be is done below in the depths of the depths of the castle. That part of the castle where the dead hang out in their stone coffins. That has got to depress a person.

The existential question here is whether Ham is talking to Daddy.

To live or not to live. This is an existential question every living and breathing human asks themselves at one time or another. Am I getting the most out of life? Am I truly alive or am I just sleepwalking along the way to my grave? Hamlet has such a bad case of the hamlets he keeps asking. At least, Kierkegaard and Sartre wrote books.

This is what Gauguin asked himself. His answer was no, I’m not living. So he went for the gusto. Quit his day job at the stockbrokering biz and ran off to Tahiti. Not only to paint but to paint what he wanted to paint. Naked Tahitians.

To be or not to be is kind of like The Road Not Taken. To be or not to be is the question; The Road Not Taken is the answer. Should Ham stand or sit to say that?

To be or not to be, that is The Question. Hamlet is like that girl I used to date. I asked her where she wanted to eat. She couldn’t make up her mind. Neither can Hamlet .

One thing is for sure. The answer is not 42. Or maybe it is. Maybe it is to be 42 or to not be 42. Wouldn’t that be something. Bet Marvin would like it. Had you read or seen “A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” you would know what the heck I was referring to.

One thing is for sure. Hamlet had not read “A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”.

4 thoughts on “Hamlet and the To-Be

  1. I haven’t read A Hitchiker’s…. but I think maybe I should. I hate not making connections. If you’re going to refer to the book in the future, please let me know so I can get it read.

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