A gelatin duplicator is an old method of making duplicate copies using a gelatin substance set in a flat pan . A master copy is produced using special coloured pencils. The gelatin substance absorbs the ink from the original copy. You lay plain paper in the gelatin and the ink would bleed off the gelatin. Great idea except each succeeding copy gets a little lighter. And, that’s when I ran into trouble. The faded copy, my myopic vision, and my great excitement about acting in a play had me reading F for P.
Ours was a quiet, calm home. I never heard my parents use an expletive word. NEVER. So when I rushed home to tell my Mother we were doing a play at school and I had the role of F___k my Mother went white. “Where did you hear that word? What is the name of this play?” “Midsummer Nights Dream. “I replied. “Oh, you mean you are playing the role of Puck. I never want to hear that other word again!”
It was a few years before I realized in a home where not even the word damn was uttered I had very loudly used the worst of all possible words. Mother wasn’t thrilled about my new word, but Mid Summer Night’s Dream is still my favorite play by Shakespeare. So much so I have written lines from the play around the bulkhead in our kitchen.
“I know a bank where-on the wild thyme blows, where the oxlips and the nodding violet grows quite over-canopied with blossoms woodbine with sweet musk-roses, and with eglantine.”