Steve Martin is still one wild, crazy man in my head. I donít
care how many sappy, middle-aged-man-trying-to-be-cool movies he makes. Somewhere in the
mis-wired synapses of my addled brain Steve Martin is the kind of guy thatís supposed to
make you double up with laughter every time you see him. It would stand to reason that
his books would do the same thing.
The Pleasure of My Company is
simply not that kind of book. Sure, there are some funny moments, and the main
character, one Daniel Pecan Cambridge has the potential to be hilarious. Instead of
playing him as a joke, Martin uses nothing but first person exposition to make the guy
someone to feel for, not to laugh at. What a let down.
The main character
is a smart guy. Perhaps so smart that the rest of his brain has to function strangely,
as natureís way to provide some balance in him. Despite the fact that he canít step over
a curb, or cross the street at a crosswalk he still manages to fall in love a couple of
times, win an award for being the most average man in America, and to rescue the damsel
Pleasure is a well written, simple book. The
character of Daniel is complex and gets revealed in good time because of interactions
with the people in his building and the visiting psychiatry intern. He is a hero in the
sense that he comes to grips with the several sets of issues in his head and overcomes
them. The best part of this is that he does it the way we all do in our lives, in a
series of barely perceptible steps that are more the choice of nature than of Daniel.
Itís a good book, and is short enough to only take a night or two to get
through. Just donít expect any really funny moments from it. The guy who used to have
an arrow through his head for a laugh is not the same person who wrote this book. I'm
still not sure if thatís something that I like.