Member Janette has contributed the notes for our next meeting, Sunday Sept. 10 at 12:30 pm at Pints Pub. We’ll be discussing the early Wodehouse collection The Man with Two Left Feet.
Some notes on The Man with Two Left Feet
- First appearance of Jeeves and Wooster
- All stories previously published in magazines: The Strand, Red Book and Saturday Evening Post, The Century, Argosy and Pearson’s, McClures and Ainslee’s.
- Wilton’s Holiday, Crowned Heads and The Mixer I and II were omitted from the US edition and replaced with Absent Treatment, Rallying Around Old George and Doing Clarence a Bit of Good, all featuring Reggie Pepper (early Bertie esque) and also in My Man Jeeves.
- Check out http://home.earthlink.net/~nmidkiff/pgw/story.html for a comprehensive list of all publication of short stories, themes, dates etc. Amazing.
- There is a first British edition published by Methuen Books for sale on AbeBooks.com for $70,000. It is the only copy 1st/1st available on the site. The true first was issued with orange boards (not blue, as later issues) and was accidentally priced at 5/ instead of 6/ (I am guessing that means shillings, which would have made the book cost a little under half a pound, 1917 prices). The seller of the $70K copy thinks that there are only two copies still in existence priced at the 5 shilling amount, and his is one of them.
- The opening paragraph slightly misquotes an 1890 song by M.F. Carey. The original lyric of the song that inspired the title story is:
Clarence McFadden he wanted to waltz,
But his feet wasn’t gaited that way.
So he saw a professor and stated his case
And said he was willing to pay.
The professor looked down in alarm at his feet
As he viewed their enormous expanse,
And he tacked on a five to his regular price
For learning McFadden to dance.
Our first parting
Sadly our group has lost its first member and the Secret Nine has been diminished. Pat Haugaard died Aug. 5 in hospice after a mercifully brief decline. Right now her estate is still being figured out and it might be some time before a service is set, but I’ll keep everyone informed. I miss her very much. She’s no doubt asking for coffee, black, no sugar, at the Angler’s Rest.