The Backgammon's In Japan, and Where Are You?

by Jake Jacobs
10 October 2008

Jake Jacobs

Everyone knows that the longest role in the Shakespearean canon is Hamlet. ("Wrong," you say, "I didn't know that. Aren't I part of everyone?" You know it now.) Actually, Henry V has more lines, but delivers them over the course of three plays. The second longest role (in one play) is Richard III. What role is third?

The answer is Iago, Shakespeare's most devious character, who devotes himself to tricking Othello because … Well, we don't really know. Each performer assaying the role answers that question afresh. But it seems as though he deceives Othello for the sheer, evil pleasure of tricking him.

By the time you read this article I'll be eating sushi in what might be the world's best sushi restaurant, with someone who might be the world's best backgammon player. Perhaps that will inspire me to write the world's best backgammon article. (You'll have to wait at least a month to find out.) From October 10-13 the 14th Japan Open will take place in Tokyo. The current Giant #1, Falafel, will be there, and so will I. And on the evening of the 11th we will "meet Kenji; eat sushi."

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