Meera Syal and other darn good reads: August book notes II

My preferred television option is to sit in front of The Kumars of No 42. ‘Tis one of my joys to marvel at the improvisational skill and dramatic manipulation of the team of actors who anchor the program. One of them is Meera Syal who plays the rude and crude grandmother.


Not only is Syal a skilled performer and actor -- having been part of this team since the days of Goodness Gracious Me! when it was a radio comedy -- she also writes: plays, filmscripts (eg: Bhaji on the Beach) novels and for shows such as these.
This leads me to my current reading: Life isn’t all ha ha hee hee which is written by Syal. This is her second novel. Her first was Anita and Me (which I read earlier this month, so I must be keen!). The latter has been made into a film and the former have recently been adapted to TV by the BBC.

Elsewhere on my shelf this month are(following on from August Book Notes Part The First):

This last is a great study of the region of mud flats and once upon a time chain of waterholes near where I live, due south of the Boondall Wetlands. I've read this book at least twice already over the last year.

For further adventures in these environs go visit the saga of The Paper Canoe.

As for the Cuban Revolution -- I finally caught up with the film, The Motorcycle Diaries now on DVD after my daughter kept pestering me about the movie. [At least for the moment she is into the inconography so I guess you can start wherever you like and see where it takes you]Supporting the Cuban Revolution has been a long term habit of mine (and why not!)and this movie is so evocative of why we do so much embrace solidarity and struggle. Che Guevera is a frequent theme in this blog ... So I keep up. You gotta study. Friends and comrades are in Venezuela at the moment doing the cheer squad thingso check out the reports via the blogroll. (I'll post on Chavez later this week in regard to Pat Robertson's fatwah on him)

RILEY ADDS: I really like Waugh's The Loved One 'cause I reckon its tops in the satiric takes so I read it every few years (and watch Tony Richardson's film of it when I can). Evelyn Waugh may have been a hoary conservative but he had an eye for contradiction. Judy Carter is a stand-up comic and I came across her quite intense DIY book just by chance. Some great stuff on comedy writing if you are keen. Sedaris is someone I came upon some how, and I don't remember when or where, but he has had me pissing myself with naughty laughter. I also want to mention that I got a nice note from Larry Gelbert after I told how much I appreciated his book Laughing Matters
Please feel free to cherish.Autobiography possible only if there is typing after death.
At 82 Gelbert not only contributes to the Huffington Post Blog along with Cindy Sheehan & Harry Shearer but he has an amazing career on the wrong side of the US congress for many a year after he was blacklisted. He also developed MASH for television and wrote lot's of other stuff over six decades you'd all know of and have enjoyed. So I was pleased to see some stuff is appearing here and , at least there showcasing Gelbert's life, even if he thinks he can't log it all before he goes from us.
But hey! you read Gelbert's tome and you just have to rush out a get the collected Roman farces of Plautus! I tell you folks that aint an easy call! That's TITUS MACCIUS PLAUTUS (c. 254-184 B.C.). Gelbert reckons that Plautus was the master crafter.

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