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[文化博览] 【整理】2013-02-22 狄更斯其人 Charles Dickens—8

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HM
As a kid, I was two things, I was very bookish, you know, I loved reading and I was also into comedy but I always regarded those two worlds of being quite separated, literary was serious, and for funny stuff I spent all my money on comics and listened to great radio- comedy shows Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.
And then I remembered when I hooked on Dickens, I picked up the Old Curiosity Shop as you do and very early on I came across this episode where there’s a great guy called Dick S, who has no money, and he’s in a pub bought a meal, and he says to the inn keeper he will come around later that night, pay for it. He writes something down the book and his friend, Dick S’s friend says to him, are you just writing down a reminder come back this evening, and Dick says, no exactly Fred, I entered in this little book, the names of the streets that I can’t go down where the shops are open, this dinner today closes Long Arch, I bought a pair of boots in Great Queen Street last week, and made that no thoroughfare too, there’s only one avenue to the Strand left open now, and I shall have to stop up that tonight with a pair of gloves.
So what Dick S is doing is he’s got a mental map of London, and he’s just crossing out the streets he can’t move on, cause he owes people money there. And I was thinking what that’s funny but it reminds me of something, it reminds me of, I don’t know, a stand-up comedy routine or a sketch or that scene that Charlie Chaplin see where he is quite happily, eating his own shoes because he has no food left in and no money to buy some. And that for me was a great eye-opener about Dickens, I think we were put off by this notion we have, of Charles Dickens of this great Victoria novelist because it implies his theories, whereas in fact I think he is the finest comedy would have ever produced.
By that I mean, much comedy today is largely still conditioned by the way Dickens wrote it in 19 century, and comedy writers and performers today owe huge debt to him, other people who work in comedy think so too.
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