PG wodehouse.

I read a short PG Wodehouse story and one sentence in it tickled me…

Just a mundane pointless thing I had to share.

Wodehouse is rather underappreciated, I fear. Not only did he have a love and a command of the English language, but he had an appreciation of it as well, as evidenced by your quote.

His work is peppered with little gems like that. He is to be savored, not devoured.

He’s a great writer, but I thought that the plots of those Jeeves and Wooster novels got a bit predictable after a while.

Eg, Wooster going through bad patch with jeeves because of [insert unsuitable garment here] wooster/one of his friends gets in trouble, jeeves fixes it, wooster allows jeeves to burn unsuitable garment. Repeat.

Not true!

Once, Jeeves forced Bertie to give up playing the banjolele!

And once, Jeeves forced Bertie to shave off a moustache!

I’m sure there are at least, um, three or four other examples, too.

I love reading Wodehouse when I’m feeling under-the-weather or down-in-the-dumps. Thankfully I’m not often ill, but were I to be incapacitated, I am sure I’d devour his entire oeuvre.

Although it’s rumoured he was a bit of a Nazi.

One of my favourite Wodehouse-isms occurs in the short story Deep Water: “The struggle between George and George’s conscience was brief. The conscience, weak by nature and flabby from long want of exercise, had no sort of chance from the start.”

Another (which he has used in several stories): “It was like being closted with something out of the Book of Revelation.”

Robertson Davies, in The Enthusiasms of Robertson Davies says that “(his) style is fairly easy to copy, if your ear is good and your acquaintance with Shakespeare, Tennyson and the Bible and Prayer Book is equal to his. But the marshalling of the incidents of the ploy, the compression, the masterly placing of the big farcial moments–it is here that Wodehouse shows his dearly-bought mastery.”

This is not to say that I love Mr. Wodehouse’s works unconditionally. The Jeeves stories are my least favourite for their very predictability, and many of his books follow the same general formula. I’ve found that reading too many of his books at once has an effect similar to gorging on meringues; I feel slightly naseous and out-of-sorts. But taken in small doses, he is highly enjoyable.

jjimm: He was not a Nazi. That was a rumour spread about after he was taken prisoner by the Germans in 1941 and was talked into doing radio broadcasts from house arrest.

xcheopis, I did the slightest bit of research on Google just now and discovered that, though very slightly ambiguous, the evidence does indeed swing heavily towards the accusation being a scurrilous rumour. Apologies for repeating unsubstantiated nonsense.

To paraphrase: “Look at that frightful ass jjimm. Did you ever in your puff see such a perfect perisher?”

Chin up, jjimm, old boy. After all, the lads at the Drones Club have been known to put their collective foots in it rather worse, wot? And it’s not as if you didn’t mea culpa directly on scoping the up-and-up. Rather makes you a regular stand-up chap, I’d say.

I say, dashed kind of you to say so, what what?

I liked the short story Jeeves and the stolen Venus; quite some good humor in it, IMHO.

When told of rumors that P.G. Wodehouse was a Nazi sympathizer, George Orwell supposedly remarked that he’d read all of Wodehouse’s books, and had never seen a post-1913 idea in ANY of them.

Orwell was correct, of course, and that was a huge part of the charm of a Wodehouse story. One would never guess, reading Wodehouse, that anything as dreadful as World War 1, the Holocaust or the Viet Nam war could ever happen. Even the “villains” in a Wodehouse story (Roderick Spode, Aunt Agatha) are generally blustering blowhards, rather than genuinely evil.

I don’t think a man like Wodehouse could ever have understood real malice or cruelty. Such things simply didn’t make sense in the world he created

I LOVE PG Wodehouse. I reread everything I can get my hands on about every two years. His sense of humor always gets me, it doesn’t really matter that some of his stuff was pretty formulaic…he wrote with such style and wit that it all seems fresh to me, every single time.

He makes me laugh out loud. I can’t think of a higher compliment than that.

Yes, I love P.G. Wodehouse.

Probably went through all the Jeeves and Wooster stories first, but I’ve come to like his other stuff a little better.

Uncle Dynamite is probably my favourite.

The whole prudent/conservative youth enduring the lunacy of his nominally aristocratic yet spiritually anarchist uncle works so well for me. Divine madness.

Nobody can reify and anthropomorphise like Wodehouse.

In a similar vein, I’m a big fan of the comic novels of Evelyn Waugh – (particularly The Loved One,) hard to reconcile with Brideshead Revisited, that. (If you haven’t read The Loved One, it’s about the romantic trials of an aspiring mortician who relectantly moves to California to work for a funeral home for wealthy people’s pets. :D)

I love the Psmith books.

I’m an Andrew Lloyd Webber fanatic, so I gotta love the Jeeves story. Jeeves was ALW’s only failed show, and anything from it is a real collectible. A preview poster recently went for $138 on ebay.

The reworked By Jeeves is very funny and very fun. The CD is worth getting. ** It’s A Pig ** is one of my favorite songs.

I regret deeply that I’ve lost my copy of this book, but still graved deeply in my grey matter is the scene where the secretary Baxter has just threatened to expose Uncle Fred, who is at the moment visiting Blandings Castle in the guise of Sir Roderick Glossop. Fred replies: “Do you like me better with my moustache like this? Or like this?”

I don’t think Wodehouse’s early School Stories–collected in The Golden Bat and The Pothunters–get quite the respect they deserve. Smashing narratives.