THE COURT JESTER
Clad in black doublet and golden foolscap, a peculiar figure wanders slowly past the guests of a party or gala. He looks with dreamy gaze into a distance visible only to him. Devoid of all conviviality, he walks onward in solitude until suddenly his eyes widen and he rudely intrudes into an ongoing conversation.
After this first faux pas, he conducts continuous sorties across the established borders of convention. He speaks loudly, speaks softly. Now he leaps, now he tiptoes towards the expectant guests. His conduct is unpredictable, his character puzzling. The fool is often informed that in this day and age no one wears such a conspicuous headdress. He shakes his bells in disbelief and asks what his conversation partner him- or herself has up on top. Quickly comes the self-evident answer: “Nothing,” even more quickly the incontrovertible quip: “Exactly! At least with me a bell rings ...”
His barbed simplicity exposes foregone conclusions to be forlorn assumptions. The guests enthusiastically take on an unabashed point of view and discover plays on words everywhere in a native language rendered newly vivid. Nimbly the jester leads his lords and ladies in a round dance of ridiculousness. Nonsense suddenly makes sense, makes for a good time.
Conversations with the guests take place in German, English, French and Italian, with a linguistic command that is not halting and fragmentary, but instead fluent and richly expressive.