NPR logo

Listen to this 'Talk of the Nation' topic

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/14157706/14157745" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Dear Diary: This Is A Dead Parrot

Dear Diary: This Is A Dead Parrot

Listen to this 'Talk of the Nation' topic

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/14157706/14157745" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

One of my colleagues today referred to the estimable Monty Python as "one of the building blocks of a sense of humor." I quite agree. (It's also a helpful tool for learning Latin, and bravery in dueling.) The Brit TV comedy sketch show lives on in countless jokes, rude gestures, silly walks, and of course, the careers of its creators and performers. Michael Palin, who even non MPFCers will remember for his semi-murderous stutter in A Fish Called Wanda, kept a diary — thank goodness — of his Python years, which has just been published. It's a must-read for anyone addicted to the goofy silliness of the group — making today a must-listen as well. Cardinal Ximinez himself will be here today — so lend us your ears and your fond memories. If you've never seen any Python, watch this.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

Practitioners didn't know then what is known now about mental illness, so it is only natural that it wasn't as prevalent a diagnosis.

As a teacher, I have noticed a change in philosophy with my peers. We're re-evaluating our theories and stereotypes of the moody/ rebellious/ difficult/ and hormonal teen. It is not that simple.

Sent by Nancy | 2:52 PM | 9-4-2007

Dear Mr. Palin,
Love your work. A question regarding your diary entries... I always seem to be able to pour my frustrations into my diary when I'm bothered, but never think to write when I'm content. Any suggestions. P.S. I rarely feel the need to write.

Sent by Susan from Flagstaff | 3:19 PM | 9-4-2007

Hello Michael,
Monty Python is alive and well among elementary school children. My son and his theatre class put on Monty Python and the Holy Grail this year.He was a knight of Ni. We just saw Spamalot and wondered why John Cleese is the voice of god in the program and show?

Sent by Jim from Lake Oswego, OR | 3:26 PM | 9-4-2007

I grew up watching Python during the late 70's and early 80's and recall many hours doubled over in laughter. My 11-year-old son watches Monty Python and the Holy Grail repeatedly and responds wonderfully to a shout of "Run Away". Will the Pythons be willing to help pay for the therapy he'll doubtless need later in life?

Thanks for being such a wonderful part of my -- and now my son's -- life.

Sent by Russell Lloyd | 3:29 PM | 9-4-2007

Monty Python has actually become a minor point of contention between my ex wife and me. She asked me to please, please refrain from watching Python with our 10 year old son, because she's worried that I'm trying to turn him into a nerd.

Oh, how I wish I WERE making that up.

Sent by Brave Brave Sir Robin | 4:12 PM | 9-4-2007

Mr. Palin,
When will your "New Europe" series run on American television and who can we harrass to get it here more quickly? (All the UK people on the palinstravels message board will be gloating and lording it over all us poor Americans who have to wait for it.)
BTW, many, many thanks for palinstravels, the smartest message board on the net!

Sent by Geraldine Clarke | 4:28 PM | 9-4-2007

Please tell Michael Palin that he has true comic genius equal to comic bliss!He deserves to hear it!

His expressions, pacing, characterization - transcend usual comedy with a sublime quality
that elicits feelings of bliss, indeed more than any other comedic actor I have ever seen.

One of my favorites from Python is the "Anything goes" piece. I also LOVE him as a broadcast journalist! Brilliant!

Thank you Michael!

Much Love to You Always!

Sent by Lisa | 5:32 PM | 9-4-2007

I wonder if the book contains any reflections on his appearances on Saturday Night Live. While I think only the first two (mabey three) seasons of SNL were funny, I loved Mr. Palin's character of Miles Coppertwait and wondered if he created these two sketches or was it SNL's writers.

Can't wait to read the book!

Sent by Bart | 4:05 PM | 9-5-2007

I grew up on Monty Python and the Holy Grail and have seen many episodes of Monty Python's Flying Circus. The rounds of quoting can go on for hours between my brothers and myself, and so when I was told that a play I had written in high school was Python-esque it was the best compliment I have ever received.

Sent by Melody | 5:15 PM | 9-5-2007

My first memories were in the early 70s. My dad had passed and my mom and I were up late one night and came across the Python Circus. It seemed like the first time in years that I had seen my mom laugh. And now, my whole sense of humor has been influenced by decades of their silliness. I think the one thing The Monty Python troupe has taught us, is not too take ourselves or life in general too seriously.

Sent by j Surface | 7:47 AM | 9-7-2007