Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Man and Wife in bed; Conversation about Nevil Shute before sleep

"So who's the face on the cover?"

"That's Nevil Shute himself."

"They have the author's face on the cover? How cheesy is that?"

"Naw..it's..well it's his autobiography; 'Slide Rule'. More natural. Here's the same picture. Photo inside, right. Except with a pipe."

"Oh. I see."

"Yeah. He was really called Nevil Shute Norway, y'know. 'Mr. Norway' the engineer."

"Yeah, you've told me before. Are there many people in Britain called 'Norway', then?"

"I dunno. It's not a very usual name. I don't know how extraordinairy it would be, though...there are a lot of 'Holland's about."

"Are there any 'Sweden's. Or 'Denmark's?"

"What, like; 'Hi, I'm Johnny Sweden'."

"Irelands, Scotlands..."

"Yeah, Irelands, yeah. There's a Jill Ireland. I can't quite remeber what she...I've never heard of any 'Scotland's, but I wouldn't be surprised if there were one or two. There are lots of people called 'England'. There was a Mike England...he played for England."

"Germany, Russia.."

"What? 'Jimmy Germany'? Nah."

"'Town Like Alice' was a good book. I've read that."


"Good TV series."

"Yes. Launched the career of Bryan Brown. And that Rachel whatsit.."

"No, no. She was in 'Thorn Birds' with Bryan Brown, but not 'Alice'. That was some other actress. She was English."


The husband reads the following passage from Nevil Shute's 'Slide Rule':

What I didn't realize, of course, is that a piece of writing is like a camera; the smaller it is the more carefully it has to be made.

The previous reader has added a footnote in pencil:

Precisely. That has what...[unreadable scribble]...in a nutshell.

"Are you going to be reading long?"

"No, no more, I think."

"You can if you want.."




Nevil Shute book gets pressed into shelf.



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