On a train recently I was relieved to see this brother and sister lounging and reading, with a few brief intervals to talk to each other, the whole way to CT --
maybe especially because of all the other kids I'd seen playing games, maybe because of WHAT they were reading. He was reading
and she was reading
When I was a child in the early 1960s, I loved MAD -- so did my friends. We found it hilarious; it articulated how we thought and felt about the world around us; and it made us feel smart -- I'm not sure how it did that. But the last time -- quite a few years ago, maybe it's gotten funny again -- I bought MAD it didn't even make me smile. IT had changed, not me.
I know because I have a lot of those old MADs and they still make me laugh out loud. I don't reread them too often -- I don't want them to lose their power. There aren't that many books that can make me laugh aloud.
Can anyone recommend ANY? I can think of:
*David Sedaris, especially when he's reading his own work aloud
*English novels like LUCIA and COLD COMFORT FARM (and even funnier, a short story "Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm, before the civilizing influence of Flora Post") and LUCKY JIM. Maybe because I lived there as a kid, I find their brand of silliness really funny.
*Josephine Tey usually has some amusing passages -- that sheep farmer quote here awhile ago came from her -- and there's a PG Wodehouse story called GOOD-BYE TO ALL CATS I find hilarious, in that high-spirited silly English way
* Parts of MATILDA are funny, too, and HARRIET THE SPY in places.
But what else? There must be more! When was the last time you laughed out loud while you were reading and what made you do it?