Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Father's Day; happy Bloomsday.

Today is Father's Day, so best wishes to all my fellow dads. This year it's also Bloomsday, the anniversary of the day in 1904 when Leopold Bloom (sketch by James Joyce at left), father of Milly and mourner of short-lived Rudy, makes his way through various encounters in Dublin, as described in Joyce's Ulysses. The novel also gives us short excursions into the worlds of Bloom's cheating wife Molly (the story climaxes, as it were, with her soliloquy while in the arms of her manager and lover, Blazes Boylan), and of Bloom's bachelor friend (and Joyce alter ego) Stephen Daedalus. Dermot McEvoy has these thoughts:
Happy Bloomsday! “YES!” said Molly Bloom. It’s a day for aimless wanderings, gorgonzola, and, perhaps, a trip to a cemetery—after a neat drop off the 40-Foot in Sandycove. In celebration listen to the brilliant Jonathan Brielle’s “River Liffey,” taken from his equally brilliant musical about James Joyce, Himself and Nora: [Hear it here.]
You can see and hear me reading an excerpt from Jim Quinn's restaurant guide Word of Mouth, which incorporates the Burton Restaurant scene from Ulysses, at a Bloomsday celebration two years ago. Then scroll down to get a much better Joyce reading; Molly Bloom's soliloquy (NSFW!) as interpreted by Aedin Moloney.