Thursday, September 20, 2012

Down East, With a Bronx Accent

Last week I drove 5 1/2 hours to vacation in Down East Maine. It is a tedious ride that was greatly enlivened by listening to Garry Marshall narrate his audiobook, My Happy Days In Hollywood. Marshall is the legendary producer/director who gave us “The Odd Couple,” “Happy Days,” “Laverne & Shirley” and “Mork & Mindy," "The Princess Diaries," and "Pretty Woman". He is an  unusual choice for a narrator, given his gravelly Bronx inflected, occasionally booming way of speaking, but it effectively brings to life the story of a sickly young boy who just wants to entertain people. He learned that lesson early when he asked his vivacious mother what boring was and she crisply answered, "your father".  Garry has a knack for describing famous people in the kindest ways, you will feel like you have gotten to know Julia Roberts, Julie Andrews, Richard Gear, Anne Hathaway, and Garry's difficult sister Penny, who became famous as Laverne. I am curious to read Penny Marshall's new biography, My Mother Was Nuts to get her perspective on her family. It sounds like she had a tough childhood. According to Garry, his mother decided Penny was trouble the minute she was born.

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