I always liked the sound of “The Ides of March” from when I’d first come upon the phrase in my reading of Shakespeare.
In 1998, it took on a new meaning: the day that my father died. He was on hospice so his death was no surprise. My mother’s (who had died 2 years and 2 weeks earlier) birthday was March 13. He hadn’t been eating or drinking much for several days before her birthday, but on that day, he perked up. He was laughing and joking, almost his old self. He sat up in his hospital bed (that was in the middle of the living room) and asked for a fried clam dinner with french fries and cole slaw and dinner rolls and God only knows what else.
So, my brother ran out to get his requested meal, which (as you probably guessed by now) turned out to be not only his last supper, but also his last lucid day. We didn’t think it was any coincidence that it was my mother’s birthday that he chose to perk up, or that 2 days later he followed her and died.
I like to have a fried clam dinner on or around March 15th in honor of my dad, like I buy primrose around February 29th in honor of my mother. The only problem now is…where to get it!