Drifting and striding, in Hollywood and elsewhere, with Geoff Nicholson - author of The Lost Art of Walking, and Walking in Ruins withcholson, author of Toff Nidrifting and stomping withcholson, author of The Lost Art of Walking, considers the narrower and wider shores of obsessive pedestrianism.
Showing posts with label PG Wodehouse. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PG Wodehouse. Show all posts

Monday, November 17, 2014

SMALL, GENERIC STREETS



And speaking of streets, in a generic sort of way, here is a wonderful/terrible poem by one Hamish Beamish, titled “Streets”
‘Streets!

Grim, relentless, sordid streets!

Miles of poignant streets,

East, West, North,

And stretching starkly South;

Sad, hopeless, dismal, cheerless, chilling

Streets!‘



The poem and Hamish Beamish are the creations of PG. Wodehouse in the novel 1927 The Small Bachelor, a novelization of a 1917 musical, “Oh, Lady, Lady!” although a quick look at the cast list of that musical reveals no such character as Hamish Beamish.

Elsewhere in the novel Molly Sigsbee tells her father about a wedding proposal she’s received.

        "Well, anyway, we walked around for a while, looking at the animals, and suddenly he asked me to marry him outside the cage of the Siberian yak."


          Hilarity, of course, ensues.




Monday, December 13, 2010

WODEHOUSE RULES



Readers of my book The Lost Art of Walking will remember my story about going walking in a wood with my dad and being accosted by the land owner.  I've found something oddly similar, and truly wonderful, in a short story by PG Wodehouse, who was also an enthusiastic walker.  The story is The Autograph Hunters.

A couple of paragraphs run as follows:

"On the afternoon of the twenty-third of the month, Mr. Watson, taking a meditative stroll through the wood which formed part of his property, was infuriated by the sight of a boy.
"He was not a man who was fond of boys even in their proper place, and the sight of one in the middle of his wood, prancing lightly about among the nesting pheasants, stirred his never too placid mind to its depths."
Safe to say that my dad and I weren't "prancing lightly about among the nesting pheasants" - my dad was a serious Yorkshireman, after all - but a part of me wishes we had been.