My beachy weech

This summer’s fluff beach reading includes British comedian/ actor/ drug addict Russell Brand’s autobiography, My Booky Wook.


It’s a terrible title and he admits as much in the forward. I think it’s derived from Cockney slang, but I could be wrong. In the U.S. printing of the book, he helpfully includes loads of footnotes that explain British cultural references for us clueless American readers. It just came out in paperback, which is the only way I roll. It’s a fun read and surprisingly literate. Take a look at this well-constructed paragraph:

My relationship with Topsy quickly grew very intense. Perhaps because she was a problem dog, we had more in common than I’d initially realized. I sometimes cuddled her too hard so that she would yelp. “Here, have some of my painful love,” my febrile embrace would tell her. “It is constrictive and controlling and painful, like all love should be.” In later life, I have come to realize that any expression of love which ends in a yelp probably requires modification.

Isn’t that great?! I think so. And there’s plenty more where that came from. I’m a big fan of his work although I think his remake of Arthur with Helen Mirren and Jennifer Garner is ill-conceived. But it’s a perfect book when your toes are buried in the sand.

* * *
In the past 24 hours, 4-Year Old daughter has:
  • Peeled the wallpaper off the wall while sitting on the toilet (bad) at my mother-in-law’s house (worse).
  • Put a handful of pennies and nickles in her mouth. Gross.
  • Ate sand at the beach. Why? “Because I like it.” WTF!? Who in their right mind would try to consume the Jersey Shore?!

For new readers, this is the same demon who cut our curtains with a pair of scissors last year. What should I do?! 8-Year Old never did stuff like this. Can I put her on medication if she didn’t really need it from a medical standpoint? It’s second child syndrome. I hope.

25 thoughts on “My beachy weech

  1. my summer reading has been the ‘millenium’ series by stieg larsson. it manages to be sufficiently ‘beachy mindless’, yet it makes me feel smart at the same time. perfection…

  2. I have yet to curl my toes in the sand of a beach this summer… perhaps I should do that soon. Unfortunately, it tends to be rainy on my days off. I am currently reading Michael Crichton’s ‘Next’, which is all about genetics and right up my alley.Obviously, you and Mrs. Wife were lulled into complacency with first daughter. Second daughter is jolting you out of that repeatedly, it seems! 😉

  3. I think we put too much effort into child one, she’s embarrassingly intelligent. Child two is too cool for school.Child three is just good at everyfuckingthing!And I’ve had a vasectomy.(I don’t care what they say, it DOES change what your stuff looks like!)Takes the worry out of contraception though! :¬)So, what were we talkin’ about again?:¬)

  4. My bff has two daughters spaced roughly the same as yours. Second one is demon seed.Time will only make this worse. How old will you be when she turns 13 by the way?

  5. Daisy: That series is on my list. If it’s the lazy path to feeling smart, then I’m all for it. Ulysses might make you feel smart, but it’s too much work.Ellie: I think there are lessons in there but since I’m in summer read mode, they’ll probably all get by me unnoticed.Ponita: Yes, it’s been a rude awakening, to say the least. Someone with a second child should have warned us. Map: I can assure you that there will not be a third child. I can barely handle these two, and they’re easy!Annie: Fortunately, by the Daughter II is 13, I’ll be so old and senile that I won’t know what’s going on.

  6. Following all these witty replies…here’s me, showing my (seldom) pragmatic side.The wallpaper probably (almost certainly?) was beginning to lift. I defy anyone not to peel once started.Sand? Yeah, all healthy kids do that.Oh…the quoted paragraph – yes, it is good.I venture to suggest that you’ll still find it good when the Easterlies have blown your beach half way up Manhattan.

  7. Russ’ writing is surprisingly good, I agree.My two sons are chalk and cheese, the second was much more of a handful than the first. But of course they’re both perfect now. You have that to look forward to.And I’m still laughing at mapstew’s comment

  8. MIT: True confession time: When I was her age, I use to eat DIRT! By the spoonful. And I turned out okay. Didn’t I???Nurse: Why is the second one always worse?! It’s almost a predictable part of our human condition. Everyone follows a template.

  9. TB: The Wallpaper is so strange. It has brief poetry quotes written in elegant script. You can read the wall while you…well…you know.Jo: Yes, a dime = 10 cents. 10p, so to speak. All this useful knowledge.Dolce: Yes, he’s pretty great. I feel bad for the two of them because the marriage will never, ever, ever, ever last. No way.

  10. Russell Brand used to write a brilliant football column in one of the weekend newspapers here – Guardian or Observer, can’t remember which – it was the only sports thing (including actual sports) I’ve ever enjoyed. I’d admire him for that alone, but those hips!Your four year old sounds like she’s not afraid to try stuff, maybe she’ll be an inventor when she grows up.

  11. The oldest child is so worried about following the rules while the youngest child is all screw the rules – the obviously don’t apply to me. My youngest has exhibited this over and over in her 15 years of life. Oh, and she is totally in love with Russell Brandt. I see lots more trouble ahead.

  12. OK so he can write but he’s done some pretty dire stuff. Maybe he’s maturing.Sorry but I had to laugh at your little girl, wall paper and your MIL:)No beach alas but am spell bound by Antonia Fraser’s account of her love story with Pinter: ‘Must you go?’Not a reference to Pinter’s demise but what Pinter uttered when he met her at a late night party.

  13. Eryl: He’s a fairly recent phenomena in the U.S. — just within the last few years — and I was quite taken with how well he can write. The book got great reviews, too. IW: That’s a clever tactic. Make yourself sound not-so-bright and then hit them with a smartly-written book. Do you suppose that’s intentional?Ponita: The do not. It’s a guessing game.Cat: They all seem to follow a template. Perhaps it’s in our genes. You think yours is one-in-a-million but the truth is that they’re all pretty much the same.Pat: Harold Pinter? The playwright? He’s one of those “you either get him or you don’t” guys. I’ve seen a handful of productions and don’t know what the fuss is. Give me Alan Ayckbourn every night.

  14. You should have known from your nieces how different the two will be….and remember the apple does not fall from the tree!MT

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