May the more superstitious among you strike me down, but there’s something amusing about fearing a day which (in my experience at least) is more often full of birdsong and the first wash of the year drying on the outside line, than Roman senators draped in crimson and clutching daggers and skulking behind the back of the sofa. The only real danger in this house lies with the so-called secret Mothering Sunday cards (made of egg boxes painted yellow and bearing a pleasing resemblance to daffodils) drying on the boiler and being guarded most savagely by my children. “Don’t you DARE look on the boiler, Mummy, or Junius Brutus will stab you from behind and have a special coin stamped in his honour and spawn a host of films starring James Mason.”
Junius. Junius Brutus. The son of Marcus Junius and Tarquinia and the nephew of Tarquin. When his father and elder brother were murdered by Tarquin the Proud (Tarquinius Superbus), he feigned insanity, thereby saving his life, and was called Brutus for his apparent stupidity.
Well! The world’s most famous assassin was called Stupid! Perhaps the unfortunate murder of Julius Caesar in 44BC was all a terrible misunderstanding. Caesar: Come and talk with me a while, Stupid. Brutus: WHO ARE YOU CALLING STUPID?