President Lincoln was assassinated in early 1865, while watching a play. His wife was with him at the time.
It led to the macabre joke in the title above, which “means” roughly “yes, let’s pretend not to talk about the horrific things that we both know have happened, and let’s make idle chitchat.”
Or that’s my take on it.
And so it is for meeting any friend or acquaintance, these days.
“How are you?”
And you want to know, and you care, obviously.
And you both agree not to mention, oh the covid, the fash, the hollowing out of democracy, the biodiversity collapse, the creaking agricultural systems, the embedded racism/settler colonialism, the surveillance, the brutal immiseration of billions, the propaganda machine that grinds our neurons and hopes and language to dust & mush and… most of all, the terrifying climate timebombs going off sooner than our best scientists thought they would. See here for the latest of many.
Why thank you, I am enjoying the play just fine.
There exists the phrase “Mandy Rice Davies Applies” – MRDA
I think we should start pushing “Mrs Lincoln Applies” – MLA