Friday, March 4, 2011

Wodehouse and Woolf in High School, an Imaginary Dialogue by Jenny

Wodehouse
Right ho, Virginia! How are you today? Did you finish that one assignment for English?
Woolf
(struggles with piles of papers as she walks down the hallway to her next class)
Does it look like I have finished? I'm still struggling with the type of flower that my main character should be picking at the climatic moment. A rose is too trite. A pansy too trivial. And I don't think that the structure works to uphold the gravitas that I desire to achieve.
Wodehouse
Right. Can't leave that gravitas unsupported.
Woolf
Precisely. I've struggled with every aspect of this assignment. How about you? Have you finished?
Wodehouse
Oh, I banged the thing out last night. Plenty of gravitas in mine. Stretched the old lemon a bit, but I think I pulled it off.
Woolf
Well, bully for you.
Wodehouse
Thanks.
Woolf
I suppose describing cricket tournament play-by-plays is slightly easier than describing the human condition. What do you think of daisies?
Wodehouse
I'm allergic.
Woolf
No, I mean for the telling moment in my piece.
Wodehouse
I'm allergic.
Woolf
I think it would have the gravitas that I need. After all, it's a delicate piece of botany. Soft white petals. And if I use the French maguerite, it would add a grace to the narrative.
Wodehouse
Yes. If I wrap my gray cells around this accurately, you have made a decision.
Woolf
Certainly. A daisy it is.
Wodehouse
Yes, I can see how a daisy would work. A delicate flower always hold more gravitas than scoring in cricket. Possibly even more weight than the wicket itself. I'm certain it will inspire more fans than our national pass-time.
Woolf
Absolutely.
Wodehouse
"How I Spent My Summer Vacation." A truly gravitas-riddled subject. But, surely, you didn't spend all your time picking flowers?
Woolf
Of course not. I was writing.
Wodehouse
Me too.

10 comments:

  1. I love Wodehouse, but in this case, I'm with Woolf.

    "Oh, I banged the thing out last night."

    Thanks for the giggle.

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  2. Hilarious! Can't leave that gravitas unsupported [bg]

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  3. Nope, that gravitas is a tricky thing. =)

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  4. Favorite line: "A rose is too trite." This post was great fun!

    I found your blog through a comment you left on Writer Unboxed, and you are definitely a girl after my own theiving heart:

    http://rosemarydibattista.com/blog/2010/12/adapting-shakespeare-part-i/

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  5. Hey Rosemary! Keep on thieving girl! Like I recently told a buddy of mine: You can't have too much Shakespeare. =)

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  6. talk about timing! I am researching (for something I am writing) the relationship, if any, between the two writers. I google the names together and the first result leads me here!

    But really a good one! They are a strange combo, aren't they: one is stream of consciousness and the other is template!

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  7. Ajay- Definitley keep me posted on what kind of relationship you find. They seemed like they would spin around the same circles, and I thought I'd find a bit more connections too, but Wodehouse was way more the world traveler and was either in America or Europe (mostly) for a lot of the time that they could've socialized.

    Something interesting I did run into is that both of them talk about Cricket - Wodehouse obviously more often - but Woolf has an interesting bit in The Waves about a boy on the sidelines watching all the 'cool' boys in the cricket team. It struck me that, if anything, Woolf was always the last kid picked and would sit on the side watching kids like Wodehouse play...such an interesting juxtaposition I thought.

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  8. It is interesting! And the funny thing is Plum saying that he "ignored real life altogether".

    Plum was quite passionate about cricket as evident in his early stories, especially ones with Mike. But once he moved to U.S, he moved on to golf. Much later in life, he even said he preferred baseball to cricket.

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