Ich haue now twies y-tagged ben for the ‘V thinges ye knowe nat concerning me’ meme.
A meme, gentil rederes, is a smal taask the which oon writer of blogges performeth and then passeth on to othirs for to doon hemselves. Mesemeth ther aren many memes yn the court of King Richard (at which ich and my famille did spende the holidayes), swich as “King Richard now uses a smal scrap of cloth to clene his nose, YE MUST ALSO SO DOON OR YE SHALL HAUE YOWER LANDES FORFEIT AND YOWER HANDES CUT OFF” or “King Richard now uses a smal metal rod wyth a cup on its end for to drinken of his soupe, YE MUST ALSO SO DOON OR YE SHALL HAUE YOWER LANDES FORFEIT AND YOWER HANDES CUT OFF.” By Seynt Dawkins, good King Richard ys the gretest creator of memes that ich knowe.
And yet for to speke of moralitee, a meme ys a thing that draweth attencion to the habits and natures of ffolk and tendeth toward pride and surquidrie, for the doing and making of memes prompteth ffolk to talk at gret length of their maners and opiniouns and historyes. And the word ytself containeth the treuethe of this lesson in its verye spellinge -- in the same maner as yn the langage of the romayns the word signyfiynge frendship or love, amicus cometh from the word for hook, hamus, for freendes and loveres hook yn to ech othirs soules lyk velcro. And thus considereth that the word meme ys writ 'me me', and thus a meme is a reduplicacioun of a singuler self and a gloryinge in ego. Ich wolde that sum wyse folk sholde make 'theethees', the which wolde be actes of charitee and goodnesse that yive vnto othirs. Ich haue a theethee for yow, my gentil rederes – yive a freende a copye of my poemes for the feest of Seynt Hilary.
But to retournen to my matir, ich haue ben asked to participate yn a meme, the nature of which is to telle V thinges that fewe peple knowe concerning me. And thus ich shalle, for to be gentil and curteis towardes thos othir bloggeres who haue me y-tagged. Ich shalle vse thys meme to telle sum detayles of my personal lyf and newes of my blogge, and thogh my face ys sum deel reed wyth embarassment at certayn detailes, yet ich shall share yn the maner confessionale wel suyted to blogges.
V THINGES YE MAYE NAT KNOWE CONCERNING GALFRIDUS CHAUCER (YET EFTSOON YE SHALL KNOWE YF YE REDE BELOW)
Iste thinge: Whan ich was yonge, oon yere for Christemasse my fadir announcid that he wolde buy me an englisshe longebowe for my gifte, so that ich mighte practice the art of archerie and lerne to defend the realm. Ich soore resisted, seyinge ‘Ich shal shoote oute myn eyen.’ Every daye of advent he wolde speke to me sayinge, ‘Jeffie, ye shall haue a fyne longebowe for a gift at Christemasse.’ And ich wolde saye ‘nay, fadir, ich shal shoote oute myn eyen, yive me rathir a boke of cicerones dreme of scipioun or peraventure a gothic belt.’ And whan Christemasse cam, the gifte was in sted a gift certificate for pizza, for my fadir is a good man and a mery.
IInde thinge: Ich haue a cat named Christopher who loveth marshes and swampes. Ich haue composid a poem to hym entitled Jubilate Stagno.
IIIrde thinge: Thogh thys be recent, yt hath nat been well y-publicised. After a short misundirstondinge, ich haue joyned in sworn brothirhede wyth Sir Baba de Brynkmann, a good man that maketh dope rymez of my poemes for the delit and edificacioun of studentz. Knowe all ye haterz present and future that thos who wolde mess wyth Sir Brynkmann shal also get a tun-full of Geoffrey. Ich am soore annoyed to heare that sum folke see nat the worthe of hys makinges and musique - and sum write him saying that “chaucer would have none of this rap crap.” Litel knowe thes ffolk that NWA’s “Expresse Yowerself” ys oon my favourite poemes. Noli nothis permittere te terere, Baba: Ich mynself haue receyved swich criticism. Ywis, whanne ich gan writen myn poemes yn fyve-stress ryming englisshe coupletes, oftimes ich got muchel grief from snooty nobles who seyd: ‘La poesie est proprement composee en langue normande, gros vilein avec ton petit chapeu de laine! La langue anglais est langue des pesauntez et labourerz & nest nemye belle! Par Seint Eloy, cest langue anglais est seulement pur escrivre le doggerel alliteratif, come les poemes del horrible escripteur qui sappelle Anonymous.’ O, fooles all: for Englisshe has bicom the hot newe trend and ich am on top of yt y-surfynyg, lyk to Keanu yn Poynt Break! As Dant the Italyen seyd: 'ther is oon thing worse than to have tales of yow y-told, and that is nat to have tales of yow y-told.'
IVthe thinge: My biggest compleynt: Whan wil ffolk stop saying ich nam nat real? Whan wil thei stop asking for my “real name”? What part of G-E-O-F-F-R-E-Y C-H-A-U-C-E-R do thei nat vndirstonden? An editor from WIRED magazine did contact me to aske if that fyne publicacioun mighte printe a part of my poost concerninge internette abbreviacions. Thys was gentil and did plese and honor me gretli, and ich consentid. And yet thei wantid to yive credit to “Geoffrey Chaucer (aka your real name)” and thei wanted to knowe what ich do in “in real lyf.” Whan ich toolde hem that my trewe cristen name was Geoffrey Chaucer (Galfridus in latina) and that ich am a justice of the pees in Kente and a member of parliament, thei seyd thei coud nat print it. For thei seyde thei coud nat printe writinge “without attribution to a real person.” What am ich, liver y-chopped? Reality ys harder to com by than a duchy thes dayes, mesemeth.
Vthe thinge and final: Helas, in the custom of thes memes, much of the aboue ys complayning and whining. And yet peraventure that ys in my nature. For whan ich was yong, ich was sum thing of a goth (or gothic): the which ys a depressid yong person who wisheth to be part of an ancient culture. Ich wroot lettres to my gothic frendes yn visigothic script, and studyed Jordnes boke ycleped Getica. At night, ich went to goth clubbes – constructed wyth horshoe arches withouten key-stones - at which ich was ycleped ‘Alaric’ by my freendes. Ich dressid mynself yn rough robes wyth big ornate belt buckles, and oones ich got in trouble wyth myn parisshe preest for pretendinge to be an Arian. Ther was many a feud bitwene the Visigoths who lovid the musique of soft ethereal synthesizers and the Ostrogoths who listned to the harshe musique of guitares and powernoyse. And everichon complained about the musique at the club the while smokinge clove cigarettez. Yt was pretty foolish, to think back upon it, and yet being a yonge goth was part of who ich am – it dooth myn herte boote that I have in a club freakie y-got to The Systren of Mercie. Certes, being a goth led me to lerne of Boethius, who was by the goth Theoderic murdred. So a shout-oute to all yonge goths out ther: sai atgaf ïzwis waldufni trudan ufaro waur me jah skaurpjono · jah ana al lai mahtai fijandis jah waihte ainohun ïzwis ni gaskathiith, children of the night!