Funny People don’t always have funny lives.
Tom Scott’s life has had lots of unfunny times but in his autobiography Drawn Out his stilettos sharp observations and dry wit make for very funny reading.
Although he writes of his gauge being on full self-pity later, there is no trace of that with the light and witty touch he applies to his impoverished childhood with his angry, alcoholic father.
In his book he recounts stories of people and events which changed New Zealand and the world as well as touching on his own deprived childhood, and his student days, career and family life.
As a political columnist and cartoonist he mixed with politicians, media and other people, including Sir Edmund Hillary and John Clarke, who made, or covered, the news from New Zealand and around the world.
He also claims the line New Zealanders going to Australia raise the IQ on both sides of the Tasman as his own and says it was taken by Rob Muldoon.
The front cover describes it as a seriously funny memoir. It is and I recommend it as a must-read for anyone interested in politics, history or life.
Drawn Out published by Allen & Unwin.
Diana Wichtel was less than enthusiastic in her review in The Listener of Rage, a drama based on the 1981 Spirngbok tour.
Co-writerTom Scott responded with this letter to the editor:
I have just read Diana Wichtel’s scornful review of Rage, which I co-wrote and co-produced for TV1 (Television, September 17).
My first response was to wonder if Diana and I had just recently gone through a particularly nasty and brutal divorce, but I have no recollection of marrying her. This doesn’t mean I didn’t marry her. I’m just saying I could well have blacked it out.
I am prepared to go to counselling with her if you think this would help sort out this mystery.
I missed seeing Rage when it screened but I’m now planning to watch it in the hope that the script is as witty as the co-writer’s letter.
Last week’s Listener celebrates its 70th birthday.
It dedicated the issue to humour, with contributions by or about some of the people who had entertained and amused readers in the past.
These incldued John Clarke, Tom Scott, A.K. Grant and Lyn of Tawa.
Then there was Bogor.
(Some stars are much brighter than others. Bright stars are like important people. they stand out amongst the many unimportant dim ones. But dim stars aren’t really dim. They just seem to be becasue they’re far away. I’m like that. Not really dim, just far away).
I loved the little woodsman and was very sad when he left The Listener.
The magazine thrived in the days it had exclusive rights to schedules for TV programmes. Once it lost those rights its readership fell but it has survived and a few months ago after years of buying it casually I became a subscriber.
It still has good writers, including Jane Clifton and Joanne Black, but I miss the regular cartoon.
Apropos of the magazine, the current edition which asks is Phil Goff’s Labour Party strong enough to rise from Helen Clark’s long shadow?
Over at Keeping Stock, Inventory 2 has been having some fun with some of the quotes part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4 and part 5.
This message from Tom Scott is reinforced by Adam Smith’s observations on the differences in style and tone between Helen Clark and John Key.