Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Please Don't Feed the Platypus

Just received the new Doomed Book Club selection, MY WICKED, WICKED WAYS by Errol Flynn. The epigraph is three Bible verses about being wicked! So right away you know you're in for a good time. Ace is way ahead of the rest of us on this one. Yesterday he tweeted that Errol Flynn is running a coconut farm - is that what he tweeted? - in the section Ace is reading now. As Ace said would happen, a young Errol Flynn accidentally kills two platypuses by feeding them tadpoles! They are supposed to only eat worms! That's what Errol Flynn says. And his dad is a famous biologist, so I believe him. Poor Flynn gets shipped off to boarding school. "The assistant headmaster was a wonderful old gentleman aged about sixty, with the picturesque name of Sir Worthbottom Smith, a down-at-heels English aristocrat, a man with a withered arm..." But Flynn gets shuffled from school to school, always stirring up a ruckus. Now he's in trouble for sneaking out of the window at night so he can canoodle with Elsie, the maid. Before such tales of youth there's a prologue that takes place during the ruination of Errol Flynn's career. It promises much getting drunk on yachts, like the Richard Burton diaries and the Johnny Carson biography before it. Flynn learns that he is completely broke: "I went to '21' that day for lunch... when you are down and out, go to the best spots." A friend shows up and Flynn insists on buying lunch: "When flat, put on the old front - you know." Yes, Errol Flynn! I do know! "I started with a couple of Jack Roses beforehand. I worked up in my usual style to grouse freshly flown from Scotland..." Errol Flynn!