Two Views of the Ides of March
One for Caesar and One for My Family

I always look for a teaching moment. It is a quirk that I have. I jump at any opportunity to clean up mistakes about anything. I passed down my quirk to Ti Ti, my oldest granddaughter. She, too, has that drive to teach. On Wednesday, there will be an example of her modes operandi.

However, today’s article is about the Ides of March. One of the issues has to do with the dating of the Ides of March. Had you asked me a year ago when the Ides of March occurred, I would have said March 15th. Ides referred to the first full moon of a given month in the Roman calendar. The Ides of any month can occur between the 13th and 15th, depending on the month.

The assassination of Caesar took place on the Ides of March, the 15th of 44 BC, in the Roman Senate. The senators wanted to rid the Roman Empire of him. Historians believe that as many as five dozen senators planned and executed Caesar.

Plutarch, born several years after Caesar’s assassination, claimed that a soothsayer had warned him about an attempt to kill him on the Ides of March. Plutarch wrote that Caesar said to the harbinger of doom, “Well, the Ides of March are come.” However, the soothsayers retorted, “Aye, they are come, but they are not gone.” The soothsayer was correct.

A negative aspect of the Ides of March

Regardless of the downfall of Caesar, the Ides of March was a time of the beginning of the new year in the early Roman calendar. The winter had ended, and the spring had arrived.

The ancient Roman calendar started with March.

This week at the college I teach is spring break. I don’t know what the students of the classes I am teaching will do this week. Nonetheless, I know what I am going to do. It is a time for a spring cleaning. I have a list of things to clean. While I intend to complete the makeover of my home during this week, it will be a Herculean task. However, my family in Myanmar has entered our State Department’s Diversity Visa lottery. If they win, they will come to America…and live in my home.

I have promised that everything will be spotless for my family. Ginger is as excited as I am. We will spend evenings on the deck and watch the sun go down as they begin a new life in America from the deck of my home.

Late in the evening, Moh Moh and I argue about who is happier, my family or me. After our debate, we will just laugh. Then we will sing our official family song.

Talk about Happy Days.