"" Writer's Wanderings: Books For The Road - My Lucky Life In and Out of Show Business: A Memoir

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Books For The Road - My Lucky Life In and Out of Show Business: A Memoir

Mary Poppins, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Diagnosis Murder, the list of Dick Van Dyke's accomplishments goes on. In his memoir, My Lucky Life In and Out of Show Business, it seems that luck had only a little to do with his career. In his humble way, Van Dyke credits so many others with his success when in reality it appears that his choices along the way are what made him the successful entertainer he has become.

Early in his career Van Dyke determined that he would not take on roles that he would feel uncomfortable with his children seeing him perform. And his internal drive was to make people laugh. He has accomplished both. While his personal life took some turns that were a bit unseemly at times, alcoholism, a divorce and a long time relationship with another woman, he treats all of those involved with respect and kindness in his writing.

The book takes you along a nostalgic path when television and entertainment was less raw and more centered on a higher standard. Cutting edge was when Mary Tyler Moore as Van Dyke's TV wife wore a pair of capri pants that were considered a bit tight. As I read along and relished the memories of good clean fun on television, I wondered what lies ahead? Are there any boundaries any more? Rather than pushing the edge for art's sake, how about stepping back for decency's sake, for the sake of our children, for the sake of the future of us all? Ah, but my soap box is a bit too weathered for today's world I'm afraid.

Great read for the nostalgia!

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