So I’m beginning to think that we really do need to sit down and have a chat with Margaret about when it is appropriate to correct people in public, though I think that at the moment she thinks that she’s being helpful.
Let me begin at the beginning. She has this book, which she loves and sleeps with (as can be seen in the picture) and wants to read all the time in excruciating detail.
It’s a counting book, and edits most of the plot, but it does use many of the characters. And Margaret has been trying hard recently to make what she says match up with what other people say. And she has been paying particular attention to getting “Mercutio” right.
Another piece of information that is useful when trying to understand this story is that the freshman at my school have, like freshmen the world over, begun to read Romeo and Juliet.*
An additional fact which will become important is that in order to get up to the daycare, Margaret and Ellie and I have to walk along the hall with the freshman lockers.
There, I think you have everything that you need to know, and can probably figure out the rest of the story.
I will, however, fill it in for you, in case you hadn’t figured it out.
On Friday morning, as we walked into school, two freshmen were
discussing Romeo and Juliet comparing homework to see if they had the right answers. One of them said something about Mercutio, but he mangled the name. Margaret stopped and asked, with dreadfully exact pronunciation, “do you mean Mercutio?”
He looked very disturbed.
I was approached later in the day by one of the freshman English teachers and asked for an explanation.
*I think this is a dumb choice for a first Shakespeare, but that’s neither here nor there. If I ran the world, however, students would start learning Shakespeare by reading Much Ado About Nothing, and wouldn’t be exposed to Romeo and Juliet until college.