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Immortal Wodehouse

Updated on September 24, 2012

"Every author really wants to have letters printed in the papers. Unable to make the grade, he drops down a rung of the ladder and writes novels."

P. G. Wodehouse

He makes me laugh out loud!

Some are born with Wodehouses in their bookshelves. Some acquire Wodehouses. Some have Wodehouses thrust upon them. I was a three-in-one! My father had an old Penguin 'The Man Upstairs & other stories' in our shelves when I was a baby. I read that, as I read everything about the house, but the stories were Early Wodehouse, and romances with a little humour, and I wasn't impressed terribly. And so the years passed till I was 14, when a good friend thrust 'Leave it to Psmith' on me.

"Read it!" he said, "It's hilarious!"

Leave it to Psmith gripped me from the start! I loved the hero, Psmith, whose name was plain Smith, till he added the P. Watch him explain that addition to a maid:

'...The name is Psmith. P-smith.'

'Peasmith,sir?'

'No, no. P-s-m-i-t-h. I should explain to you that I started life without the initial letter, and my father always clung ruggedly to the plain Smith. But it seemed to me there were so many Smiths in the world that a little variety might well be introduced. Smythe I look on as a cowardly evasion, nor do I approve of the too prevalent custom of tacking another name on in front by means of a hyphen. So I decided to adopt the Psmith. The p, I should add for your guidance, is silent, as in phthisis, psychic, and ptarmigan. You follow me?'

'Y-yes, sir.'

That was my first intro to Psmith and an entry into a world of timeless laughter. I was hooked to Wodehouse for life! I started reading his books like one gone mad. While travelling, eating, before bed...whenever I could. Even now, when slightly blue, I just need a dose of Wodehouse to cheer me up. His stories will live on, as Evelyn Waugh said, ``Mr Wodehouse's idyllic world can never stale. He will continue to release future generations from captivity that may be more irksome than our own. He has made a world for us to live in and delight in.''

While that world exists, Wodehouse will be immortal. Will write more about him, soon. Promise.

Wooster - Jeeves

The above is from the TV show featuring Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie as Jeeves and Bertie Wooster, the funniest duo in English literature.

Below is a video from Shropshire tourism, for you to feast your eyes on the beauty of the setting Wodehouse adopted for his Blandings Castle series of novels and short stories.

Wodehouse books in Amazon

Comments

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    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      8 years ago from Chennai

      Happy Birthday, Wodehouse!

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      8 years ago from Chennai

      What ho, Old Bean! Had a wonderful time reading the first hub of the Fillmore, thank you! Mind boggles imagining a lady's personal gentleman though! :))

    • ltfawkes profile image

      ltfawkes 

      8 years ago from NE Ohio

      Nice hub, and I particularly enjoyed the videos.

      I read all the Wodehouse I could find but still wanted more. Eventually I decided I'd just have to write them myself.

      Mine are contemporary and instead of Bertie, I offer a young heiress (imagine Paris Hilton but with a better vocabulary) but I think there are enough winks and nods to my fellow Sir Pelham fans to be going on with . . .

      I wish you Wodehouse fans would take a look and let me know what you think.

      L.T.

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      8 years ago from Chennai

      In total agreement with you, De Greek, Old Top!

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 

      8 years ago from UK

      No matter how good the actors, it is impossible to translate the Master's written word into film with real success. He was a Wordsmith eternally placed on the pedestral with the very best...

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      9 years ago from Chennai

      Oh Iðunn, how did I miss this comment of yours? :(

    • profile image

      Iðunn 

      9 years ago

      If I buy, what shall I purchase first? I am taking a recommendation on this one.

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      9 years ago from Chennai

      Great, Iðunn, I really wish you would discover Wodehouse. :)

      Yes, Teresa. But hope you read the books too?

    • Teresa McGurk profile image

      Sheila 

      9 years ago from The Other Bangor

      . . . and Laurie and Fry were a great combo for the task of Wooster and Jeeves, too. Wonderful stuff.

    • profile image

      Iðunn 

      9 years ago

      I shall have to look for it. Looks like psome fun! :D

    • muser profile image

      muser 

      10 years ago

      Toodle-oo!

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      10 years ago from Chennai

      Then see you there! Pip pip.

    • muser profile image

      muser 

      10 years ago

      Absolutely! Wrote a hub about him as well. :D

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      10 years ago from Chennai

      Another Wodehouse fan! :)

    • muser profile image

      muser 

      10 years ago

      My absolute favourite too!

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      10 years ago from Chennai

      Oh, wonderful, Zsuzsy, you are a fellow fan! Lucky you, I haven't seen a performance in my life, only on TV, ages ago, when they had 'Wodehouse Playhouse!'

    • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

      Zsuzsy Bee 

      10 years ago from Ontario/Canada

      Absolutely, I go on Wodehouse binges when that is all I read, listen to on audio books. Also we have a private theatre near our town and they put on Wodehouse productions fairly regularely.

      regards Zsuzsy

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      10 years ago from Chennai

      Isabella, I am delighted to discover that you, too, read Wodehouse! Aunt Dahlia is quite a criminal in that one you read, which is why she isn't a gentleman!

      Do you also read Wodehouse, Zsuzsy?

    • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

      Zsuzsy Bee 

      10 years ago from Ontario/Canada

      I've seen a couple of productions of Wodehouse over the past few years, but I like Steven Fry versions the best.

      another great HUB Kenny

      regards Zsuzsy

    • Isabella Snow profile image

      Isabella Snow 

      10 years ago

      I'm reading Aunts Aren't Gentlemen right now!

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      10 years ago from Chennai

      Then you are my brother, MrMarmalade, I love you!

    • MrMarmalade profile image

      MrMarmalade 

      10 years ago from Sydney

      I also fancy Wodehouse

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