Letter from the Publisher: The Seven Stages
In As You Like It, Shakespeare’s comedic reflection on life, the Bard describe seven stages of a person’s life: infant, schoolboy, lover, soldier, justice, Pantalone, and old age. These all seem pretty clear, except “Pantalone?” I looked it up—it means “dotard” or “old fool,” more or less.
Are we really the same people now that we were in high school? The philosophers debate about what gives us our identity. Is it our core values, or our moral compass, or even a Jimminy Cricket type of conscience? I don’t know the answer to that question. In truth, I can barely recognize, much less relate to, who I was in college. Yet there is a thread of something that connects me to that younger version of myself.
As we go through these stages, it helps to have our friends with us. Life at times is not easy and it’s good to have that handful of comrades beyond family to help weather or tough out the storms. Once you hit that seventh stage you’ll feel a sense of satisfaction that you’re still in the game, and that you have a life-enriching circle of friends.