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Started by Opus106, June 19, 2009, 09:56:27 AM

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Opus106

Quote from: Elgarian on June 21, 2009, 11:46:39 AM
I say, Comrade Opus, it's awfully decent of you to take an interest in the activities of Psmith - but a quiet word in your shell-like, if I may: the finest tale is the first one, about Psmith and Comrade Jackson at Sedleigh school. It is a tale to gladden the hearts of men from Barsetshire to Loamshire (are you acquainted with Loamshire, Sir?) It expands before one like a beautiful flower. I earnestly commend it to you, Comrade Opus.

I presume you're referring to Mike? That's the only one not featured in that volume I mentioned. It has Psmith in the City, Psmith Journalist, and Leave it to Psmith. I'll get hold of a copy soon.
Regards,
Navneeth

Elgarian

Quote from: opus106 on June 22, 2009, 12:14:58 AM
I presume you're referring to Mike? That's the only one not featured in that volume I mentioned. It has Psmith in the City, Psmith Journalist, and Leave it to Psmith. I'll get hold of a copy soon.

Yes - but it has also appeared in various guises. Psmith only appears halfway through Mike, when Mike switches schools from Wrykyn to Sedleigh, and this last section has been published separately as Enter Psmith. That's the form in which I first encountered it, and it's been one of those 'lifetime companion' books ever since. Literally, I've read it dozens of times, and I'm still laughing. The later Psmith books don't quite capture me in the same way. (Of course that might be because I'm just an overgrown schoolboy.)

karlhenning

Leave It to Psmith was how I made his acquaintance.

"Across the pale parabola of Joy" . . . .

Opus106

#23
Mac had many admirable qualities, but not tact. He was the sort of man who would have tried to cheer Napoleon up by talking about the Winter Sports at Moscow.

--Summer Lightning

Really, do you need a reason for bumping a Wodehouse thread up? ;D
Regards,
Navneeth

Elgarian

Quote from: opus106 on September 30, 2009, 08:17:28 AM
[Really, do you need a reason for bumping a Wodehouse thread up? ;D

When faced with a situation like this I always ask myself, 'What would Napoleon have done?' And I believe, Comrade Opus, that Napoleon would have bumped the thread up regardless.
So bump away, old chap. Bump away.

karlhenning

Neither stint thou on the whisky-&-splash.

Elgarian

Quote from: k a rl h e nn i ng on September 30, 2009, 09:52:19 AM
Neither stint thou on the whisky-&-splash.

I have no doubt Napoleon would have advised that too, Comrade Henning. Following which: shall we stagger?

karlhenning

Napoleon was more one of those cognac-swilling, empire-building birds;  but the principle is much the same.

jlaurson

Bump-away. Wodehouse crept up in a strong sort of way in the Purchases thread, where his comic genius was likened to the restorative effect Haydn has on mind and sold. The milk of human kindness and such sloshing about in it and so forth.

Quote from: jlaurson on October 25, 2012, 09:32:22 PM
??? So much new music for you? You blessed, blessed man. That's like never having read any Wodehouse.

And worry not. Haydn is not an addiction. It is a blessing, it is a grace.
Quote from: Brian on October 25, 2012, 05:08:30 PM
Now I'm very excited as I've never read any Wodehouse.
Ah! Start here, if you are intrigued... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jtZMAFA2Zo and here Richard Dawkins and Stephen Fry et al. repeat what I insinuated. :-) Takes a while to get into Wodehouse (depending on the book and your background a quarter novel, or half a novel, or max. 1 1/2...) but it's like a perfect drive in the perfect countryside. "Where are we going? Who cares. What a wonderful drive this is!"

Quote from: jlaurson on October 26, 2012, 05:49:21 AM
Quote from: Opus106 on October 26, 2012, 12:25:00 AM
I'd suggest him to read the books first. And as famous as they (Wooster and Jeeves) may be, the Blandings series is equally impressive.
Agree entirely! The Blandings stories are probably even funnier and better... than Jeeves/Wooster. (Not that I have all those, too.) Summer Lighting, or Something Fresh are perfect starting points, I think. You read along, merrily, perhaps a chuckle here or there... and then out of nowhere, the turn of a phrase, a word, a response on pg. 158 -- not at all funny in isolation -- has you snort your morning coffee across the table to the other side of the room. The Everyman Library Edition (in England; for the US it's Overlook Press who publishes the analogue, identical, gorgeous edition) is the one to have. (Everyman-UK link  |  Overlook-US link)

And the Fry and Laurie stuff, although I like it in is own right, gets progressively worse towards the latter seasons and you'll never get their voices out of your head, after having seen it.

Brian

Bumping this Wodehouse thread for Elgarian to find.  :)

k a rl h e nn i ng

Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Jo498

Quote from: knight66 on June 21, 2009, 08:25:04 AM
Not so much an insult, more a subjective description; I had assumed the following would nevertheless be in the top 20.

'She has a voice like a cavalry troop charging over a tin bridge.'

Also, he delightfully describes one tough minded female as being, 'a 14 minute boiled egg.'
About one of Bertie's short time fiancées, probably Florence something or Honoria Glossop, there is some expression like that "she was training to become an aunt", presumably Aunt Agatha, not the more agreeable Aunt Dahlia (although I think it was her who enlisted Bertie to steal that silver cow creamer...)

Quote
The language has an immense amount of life in it, constructed with great brio. It always ensure I am in a good mood, just 10 minutes with him and I am smiling.

You might enjoy these short stories, 'The Oldest Member' Although I have minus interest in golf, the tales are diverting.
I shrank back from them because I also have negative interest in golf (and cricket, that's why I am not sure I ever finished Mike and Psmith or whatever the one is with cricket).
It's been years I read any Wodehouse. I basically started with Jeeves & Wooster (not the TV show, I saw it but after I read most of the stories) and I believe I read all of them, a large part of Blandings and some odds and ends. Overall I think Jeeves & Wooster are the best (nonwithstanding a few weaker late ones), precisely because of the language that is unique with Bertie as narrator. Blandings is usually good when focussed on Lord Emsworth but I dislike Galahad (Uncle Fred is o.k.) and I generally missed the dimension of the special Bertie language.
Tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos, dans une chambre.
- Blaise Pascal

LKB

I'll bite... what's a Wodehouse?

And as l expect at least one respondent to have entirely too much fun educating me, I'll add:

You're welcome.  ;D
Mit Flügeln, die ich mir errungen...

Jo498

An old fashioned English (usually wooden) outhouse.
Tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos, dans une chambre.
- Blaise Pascal

Elgarian Redux

#34
Quote from: Brian on October 12, 2022, 10:28:14 AM
Bumping this Wodehouse thread for Elgarian to find.  :)

And the word goes around the clubs: 'Elgarian has found the bumped thread.'
Thanks Brian.

I've been having a Wodehouse beanfeast these last few weeks. Starting with a reread of the Psmith books (Mike, Psmith in the City, Psmith Journalist, and Leave it to Psmith). And this has been the first time I've really enjoyed the last one, so much so that I dived deeper into Blandings Castle and read Summer Lightning and Heavy Weather for the first time, with much enjoyment. I've been searching for period editions (not expensive first editions, but just affordable hardbacks issued in the 1930s and 40s).

Then I asked myself, 'What would Napoloeon have done?'

I think Napoleon would have read the early school stories next, and that's what I've been doing: The PothuntersThe Gold Bat, the short story collections set at Wrykyn and elsewhere, The Head of Kays, and so on.  Sheer escapist fun, beautifully written. I'm finding them a delight.

k a rl h e nn i ng

Quote from: Elgarian Redux on October 13, 2022, 10:09:53 AM
And the word goes around the clubs: 'Elgarian has found the bumped thread.'
Thanks Brian.

I've been having a Wodehouse beanfeast these last few weeks. Starting with a reread of the Psmith books (Mike, Psmith in the City, Psmith Journalist, and Leave it to Psmith). And this has been the first time I've really enjoyed the last one, so much so that I dived deeper into Blandings Castle and read Summer Lightning and Heavy Weather for the first time, with much enjoyment. I've been searching for period editions (not expensive first editions, but just affordable hardbacks issued in the 1930s and 40s).

Then I asked myself, 'What would Napoloeon have done?'

I think Napoleon would have read the early school stories next, and that's what I've been doing: The PothuntersThe Gold Bat, the short story collections set at Wrykyn and elsewhere, The Head of Kays, and so on.  Sheer escapist fun, beautifully written. I'm finding them a delight.

Curiously, perhaps, Leave it to Psmith was my entrée to Wodehouse, so I appreciate your de facto reminder that there are other Psmith books.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Elgarian Redux

Quote from: k a rl h e nn i ng on October 13, 2022, 10:56:14 AM
Curiously, perhaps, Leave it to Psmith was my entrée to Wodehouse, so I appreciate your de facto reminder that there are other Psmith books.
When I was nobbut a young lad of maybe 12 or 13, my uncle gave me his copy of Enter Psmith. It was a lovely book - green hardback, published in the 1930s, blessed with comfortable print. I adored it, and read it over and over again. Eventually I found myself a nice old copy of Mike, of which the latter half was republished separately as Enter Psmith. I was very glad to get to know the whole tale, though Enter Psmith is the real gem - the pinnacle of all the Psmith books, for me - and indeed would still, today, be in my list of ten desert island novels.

Brian

Between Karl and me, we have you covered on opposite beginnings: my introduction to Wodehouse was the Summer Lightning and Heavy Weather combo. It was like walking into a gold mine. I thought Summer Lightning was just about the most perfect comedy since Shakespeare, and then I found out there are dozens and dozens more books to read.

Only complaint so far: one needs a whole separate bookcase for all the Wodehouse!

Elgarian Redux

Quote from: Brian on October 13, 2022, 01:01:59 PM
Between Karl and me, we have you covered on opposite beginnings: my introduction to Wodehouse was the Summer Lightning and Heavy Weather combo. It was like walking into a gold mine. I thought Summer Lightning was just about the most perfect comedy since Shakespeare, and then I found out there are dozens and dozens more books to read.

Only complaint so far: one needs a whole separate bookcase for all the Wodehouse!

I have had several attempts to get a nice old (affordable) copy of Something Fresh, but always something daft has got in the way. I shall keep trying. Meanwhile, Brian, are there any other Blandings books that live up to the brilliant promise of Summer Lightning and Heavy Weather?

Jo498

I liked "Something Fresh" but IIRC it is one of the cases where the first book in a (loose) series is in some sense not yet part of it, or more precisely, some of the later recurring characters were to be developed quite differently.
(A somewhat related case is the original version of "My man Jeeves", IIRC. And in another "world", several discworld books, esp. the first two). I think, "Pigs have wings" is also quite good. And there are several great short stories, e.g. "Lord Emsworth and the Girl Friend" and "Lord Emsworth acts for the best".
Tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos, dans une chambre.
- Blaise Pascal