I memorize the Russian tsars by announcing each of them in a wrestling commentator voice in my head

“And from 1825 to 1855 we have NICHOLAS "NICK THE STICK” ROMANOV!!! It’s 1825 and it looks like he’s really cracking down on those Decembrists, Marx is introducing communism in 1848 BUT NICK IS HAVING NONE OF THAT! Will he survive the Crimean War?? THE ANSWER IS NO!!!“

"Who’s taking over but none other than ALEXANDER "SERF LIBERATOR” ROMANOV!! Comparably so liberal!! I hope he doesn’t get assassinated by the People’s Will in 1881!!!“

"Oh damn, looks like we’re going CONSERVATIVE AS FUCK with Tsar Alexander III!! Land captains and the Manifesto of Unshakable Autocracy? OF COURSE YOU’RE GOING TO DIE EARLY MOTHERFUCKER! 1894!!”

“Let’s see, who do we have here…. little Nicholas II. Clearly you don’t know what the hell you’re doing since you got your industrially backwards country into the Russo Japanese War in 1905 and halfheartedly created a Duma in response to your BRUTAL CRACKDOWN on protesters! Bloody Sunday was a shit show, thanks a lot for World War One, YOUR WEAKNESSES WILL GET YOU AND YOUR ENTIRE FAMILY KILLED by 1918!”

John William Waterhouse (British, 1849-1917) in studio. Photograph by Ralph W. Robinson. Published in Members and Associates of the Royal Academy of Arts, 1891, Photographed in their Studios (1892). National Portrait Gallery, London.

The unfinished picture on the easel is an early study for the 1894 The Lady of Shalott. Among the items on the cabinet behind Waterhouse is an old statue reflecting his interest in classical antiquities: “It is recorded of his childhood that a fragment of Pompeian fresco was his most cherished treasure."