Why everyone should read Yes, Prime Minister (or watch the series, really, but the book is wayyy funnier):
I decided it was time to remind Humphrey who was boss.
"Humphrey, who has the last word about the government of Britain? The British Cabinet or the American President?"
He sat back, crossed his legs, and considered the matter for a moment.
"That's a fascinating question, Prime Minister. We often discuss it."
"And what conclusion do you come to?"
"Well, he replied, "I have to admit I'm a bit of a heretic. I think it's the British Cabinet. But I know I'm in a minority."
Why everyone should read Wodehouse:
"What did he say?"
"I cannot recall his exact words, sir, but he drew a comparison between your mentality and that of a cuckoo."
"A cuckoo, eh?"
"Yes, sir. To the bird's advantage."
It was one of the dullest speeches I ever heard. The Agee woman told us for three quarters of an hour how she came to write her beastly book, when a simple apology was all that was required.
Over-generalisation: Is all good humour by British authors? Wodehouse, Douglas Adams, Helen Fielding (okay, chick-lit, but pretty damn funny), Sue Townsend (drags sometimes, but still), even Jeffrey Archer (at times), Gerald Durrell? I can't seem to recall any American writer of humour. Then again, it could be the fact that my reading is very limited and very mainstream.
Grouse #1: While we're on books, will someone explain why Agatha Christie novels are being made into those... graphic novels? Is that the term? Or any novel, for that matter. They look like bad comic books. I sincerely want to know what the point is. Help kids read? Make adults read? Replace Betty & Veronica Double Digest?
Grouse #2: Also, I register my hatred for ladies (or men) in bookstores who yell to someone on their cellphone, let their kids run amok, and look at books, not read the title / author / blurb. Sample these (all overheard in Crossword):
"Haan, Jigna, mane book levi chhe... Discount voucher kaale expire thaaye chhe. Aiya bau badhi chhe... kai saari chhe?" (Translation: Yeah, Jigna, I want a book. My discount voucher expires tomorrow. There are lots here... which one's good?)
*volume equal to that at which Raghu Dixit shouts in that song of his* "Hello? Haan, boss, sau rupya bacha hai... Kaun si loo? Kuch khaas nahi dikh raha yahaan pe..."
The last time I encountered a lady whose kid was running amok, I gave her such a dirty look that when I turned and left, I heard her tell her husband in a whisper, "Kaise dekh rahi thi..."
That makes me feel good. Though Crossword is kinda losing its charm. Half the store sells shirts now. Major piss-off. Just an armchair or two left. Must switch to Landmark. But I really don't like how Landmark is structured. Hard to explain, but I don't.
Grouse #3: Mothers who ask me what they should make their kids read. How would I know? Just because I sneak a book into every social gathering (I'd die of boredom otherwise) doesn't mean I'm an authority. Let 'em read what they want to. Let 'em not read if they don't want to. We grew up choosing our own books, first Enid Blyton, then Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, then classics, then RK Narayan, then contemporary Indian fiction... some people went crazy over Roald Dahl (I never took to him, somehow), Sweet Valley, some horror series... A lot of the books we read back then seem funny and silly now. I remember picking up a Nancy Drew a few months back, and being shocked that I ever enjoyed it. But the point, the point! Why must parents force books down their kids' throats? Leave them alone. If they want to read, they will.
This is, as you can see, one of the more rambling entries. Sunday effect.
I have this urge to do a tag about my favourite male fictional characters. No one tagged me, (no one ever does), so I should start taking matters in my own hands and doing whatever tags I feel like. But this particular tag will probably turn into a mush-fest, so I'm leaving it for when I have absolutely nothing to write about.
Anyone who expects a Rock On!! review is hereby disappointed. I'm too biased. But just as a note, consider this: Akhtar can write, direct, act, sing, dance and look super-hot. And he has a gaze to die for. (Okay, not literally, but quite an awesome one.) AND he beats Ranbir Kapoor hands down in the towel department. Haha. Go, Farhan! (Unabashed groupie-giri. Can't resist. Peru, join in.)