Today is both Bloomsday (the day in which Leopold Bloom, the protagonist of James Joyce's novel Ulysses, walks around in Dublin - the whole novel takes place on this day) and my wedding anniversary. In Dublin, people gather in various places featured in the novel every June 16 (and have done so since 1954, the year before I was born). People do this in New York and other cities as well, but somehow that seems kind of silly to me. There are bronze plaques embedded in the sidewalks in Dublin at Bloomsday locations. (The photo for today's morning collect is one of them.)

In 2005, my family and I arrived in Dublin on Bloomsday at the beginning of a vacation in Ireland. We did not participate in the festivities (we were jet lagged and the boys would not have appreciated it, I think) but did see some groups gathered around here and there. And although I was an English major in college, I admit to never having read Ulysses. I wondered how many of the people who participated in the Dublin Bloomsday had read it; my experience is that more people claim to have done so than have actually done so - not only for Ulysses but for Thomas Pynchon novels or Virginia Woolfe or Shakespeare or The Bridges of Madison County. We like to sound as if we are in the know and will cheat on those online tests to check off all the books we've read to include those we wish we'd read or want other people to think we have read.

At any rate, I think Bloomsday is a nice day to have for a wedding anniversary, even if one has not read the novel. After all, it features reading, drama, costumes, walking in Dublin, traditional Irish music; it takes place on the day that Joyce himself chose to use in the novel for Bloom's day in Dublin because it was the date Joyce and his wife to be had their first date walking about in that city; and the novel's famous last line is Molly Bloom's "yes I said yes I will Yes."