Thank You For The Education

A plague on neither of your houses!

Learn something new every day.

I’m out at the pharmacy wearing my “A plague on neither of your houses” mask, waiting in line, doing the social distancing thing.

I’m called next, he asks me the patient’s name, and I tell him as I’m approaching to my safe distance. He leans forward and squints. I think he’s misunderstood my mumble through the mask, so I repeat it.

A plague on neither of your houses!

“No,” he says, “I was trying to read your mask. A plague on neither of your houses. Huh. Hmmm. Date of birth?”

I tell him and he goes looking for the medicine. I wonder when I’ll have the opportunity to explain.

He brings back the medicine and, after ringing me up and while I’m doing the credit card thing, he seems to have figured it out. He says, “I like that. Kind of like, good will toward everybody? Wishing nobody gets sick?”

“It’s from Shakespeare,” I told him. He looks curious. “Romeo and Juliet? There’s a famous line that goes, A plague on both your houses. So, we’re in a pandemic, we’re wearing masks so nobody gets sick …?”

“Oh!” he says. “Ok, I see, very good. Thank you for the education.”

I realized at that moment that I’d always assumed “A plague on both your houses” was as recognizable as “To be or not to be”. Apparently not! Thank you, pharmacy man, for the education!

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