Write and the world laughs with you
There are few skills that I admire more than the ability to write text that causes people to laugh out loud. Several writers have achieved this with me, notably Jerome K. Jerome, PG Wodehouse, and Auberon Waugh.
The first such occasion that I remember with clarity was when as a child I was confined to bed with an illness — mumps? measles? — and I read a book from a series I’d never come across before. The series was Paddington and the book was Paddington Abroad, in which Paddington becomes — inevitably, absurdly, and unforgettably — mixed up with the Tour de France.
Reading that book led me to read one after another from the series and I enjoyed them all, though none as much as that first venture. The others tended to make me laugh inwardly: Paddington Abroad was the one that mage me giggle.
I mention it now because I hear that the author, Michael Bond, has died. To make people laugh, and smile, and want to read on — and to do so so benignly: what a wonderful thing to have done with a life.