Miscellany 40: Wodehouse and Shakespeare (etc)
Short, sweet, with a touch of silliness:
Underground cities are fascinating — think of the Mines of Moria — but one doesn’t usually think about them existing in real life. Here is an intriguing slide show of ‘urban explorers’ that includes some striking photographs of sewers and tube tunnels beneath New York and London.
I love P.G. Wodehouse. Here is a nice piece from First Things a while back on his fantastic prose. I’m a big proponent of excellence in writing; Wodehouse is a perfect example of excellence in light, comic prose. If you are going to make a meringue, make the very best meringue possible: light, sweet, airy, delicate. One can’t live on meringues alone, but they add joy and pleasure to our lives. Light, airy fiction ought to be as well written as serious drama — and for what he’s doing, I would argue that Wodehouse stands equal to Shakespeare!
Apparently ‘meringue’ is another entry in that category of Words I Cannot Spell Nor Even Think of Possible Alternative Spellings That Might Be Correct. In case you’re interested, this is how you pronounce it.
Speaking of Shakespeare, here is an excellent series of radio programs on “Shakespeare’s Restless World.”
Time for some serious literary criticism. New Directions in Pooh Studies. (It’s a Word doc but worth reading; the original link I provided is frequently broken.)