RTW: Good for a Laugh
Today’s Road Trip Wednesday question, as posed by the folks over at YA Highway, is:
Who is your favorite comedian or funny book and/or movie?
This is actually surprisingly hard to answer. Not that I don’t enjoy comedy. In fact, one of the things that drew me to my wife was her ability to make me laugh. Growing up, movies and TV shows with high comedic value were among our favorite viewing, whether it was Monty Python, Fawlty Towers, Not the Nine O’Clock News, The Princess Bride, The Marx Brothers movies (movies that are nearly 80 years old, but Groucho’s one-liners and Harpo’s faces still crack me up today)–to name a few of the TV shows/movies we would enjoy.
Naming a favorite, though–now, that’s tough. Especially with books. Partly because I don’t think I’ve read a book that made me laugh start to finish. There have been books with comic moments that stand out. There are many such moments in GRIMBLE, and in the JENNINGS AND DERBYSHIRE series–books I enjoyed in my younger days (okay… I still enjoy them). I can also remember laughing hard at the “You-No Poo” bit in HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE. And both the book and movie of THE PRINCESS BRIDE have very funny moments.
One category of non-fiction that I find particularly funny is bloopers: mis-speaking, typos, that kind of thing. The British satirical magazine Private Eye periodically produces a book called COLEMANBALLS (named for the British sports commentator David Coleman, who was particularly talented at foot-in-mouth commentary). These books contain quotes from radio DJs, sports celebrities and commentators, TV presenters, etc. where they simply say stupid things. I mean no disrespect to the persons involved, but these crack me up. A lot. Some examples:
- “I must apologise to the deaf for the loss of subtitles…” (TV Newscaster Angela Rippon)
- “You don’t get once-in-a-lifetime offers like this everyday…” (Advertisement)
- “I have already not made that point…” (Presenter David Frost)
- “Some news just in–it’s so hot the paper’s still wet…” (Former Radio 1 DJ Andy Peebles)
- “The record of Buddy Holly I like best is the one he made before he died…” (Music journalist/editor David Hepworh)
- “… a lot of new albums out that we’ll be hearing quite a lot of, because they sound like albums that will remain timeless for quite some time.” (Former Radio 1 DJ Kid Jensen)
As soon as this post goes live, I’ll think of many other books, shows, etc. But I think that’s about the best I can do for an answer right now. How would you answer this? Use the comments to suggest funny shows, movies, or books I overlooked–or participate in today’s Road Trip yourself (details on how to join in are on the YA Highway blog). I look forward to being reminded of all the excellent comedies I forgot.