Things I've Learned While Working at the Library: I Need a Jeeves
October 08, 2010
One of the things that makes working at the library such a great job is that one thing I find in the library may lead me to discover something new. I find an author or a book I knew nothing about, and end up going off on a voyage through the library to find out more. Let me give a recent example, wherein I learned that there is nothing more valuable than having a "Jeeves".
A while back, I was listening to an audiobook titled Fry’s English Delight, (originally a BBC Radio Series) and I remarked to my co-workers that the author/narrator Stephen Fry was quite witty. Sally, one of our pages, (and who is a bit of an Anglophile) pointed out that Stephen Fry was one half of the comic duo, Fry & Laurie.
Laurie, of course, is Hugh Laurie aka Dr. House. So out of curiosity, I checked out the Jeeves & Wooster television series, starring Fry as Jeeves and Laurie as Wooster. It is based on the novels and short stories of P.G. Wodehouse. Finding the TV show hilarious, I set out on yet another one of my obsessive quests: to read every “Jeeves” novel and story.
Jeeves is the “gentleman’s personal gentleman” to Bertram “Bertie” Wooster, a dim bulb of an English Jazz Age aristocrat. Bertie is wealthy enough to do nothing but pal around with like-minded souls at the Drones Club, although he will admit that he knows some people who have had to work, the poor souls.
Bertie is forever becoming entangled in situations involving his friends, (with wonderful names like Bingo Little, Oofy Prosser, Tuppy Glossop, or my favorite, Gussie Fink-Nottle) or tasked with some unpleasant duty by his Aunts. Of course, the gormless Bertie consistently creates havoc through his well-intentioned, but ill-conceived schemes.
Fortunately, Bertie has Jeeves. Obtaining his information through the scuttlebutt of servants, his family, and according to Bertie, a diet of fish, Jeeves always manages to find a creative solution. Perhaps the only problem Jeeves cannot solve is Bertie’s poor taste in outerwear.
I've been chuckling through the stories and novels ever since, which has led me to the question: "Where can I get a Jeeves?".