“Prose both scabrous and poetic.” – Publishers Weekly. “Proust meets Chandler over a pint of Guinness.” – Spectator. “A sheer pleasure.” – Tana French. “Among the most memorable books of the year, of any genre.” – Sunday Times. “A hardboiled delight.” – Guardian. “Imagine Donald Westlake and Richard Stark collaborating on a screwball noir.” – Kirkus Reviews. “A cross between Raymond Chandler and Flann O’Brien.” – John Banville. “The effortless cool of Elmore Leonard at his peak.” – Ray Banks. “A fine writer at the top of his game.” – Lee Child.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

For Whom The Bell’s Palsy Tolls

It’s been a busy-busy-busy week for your genial host (right), folks, what with everyday life cranking up a couple of notches, the Electric Picnic gig to prepare for, and Princess Lilyput’s christening to come on Sunday, so apologies for the go-slow on ye olde blogging in the last few days. I’ve also been feeling exhausted, which I put down to the frantic schedule and burning the candle at both ends, but it appears there’s a more sinister reason.
  For lo! I toddled along to the doctor yesterday complaining that my devastating blend of windswept, rugged handsomeness and winsome boyish charm were being undermined a tad by the fact that, during the week, I’d developed a smile akin to that of The Joker. The diagnosis? Bell’s Palsy.
  Now, I don’t know about you, but the word ‘palsy’ gives me the shivering fits. According to the Doc, it’s a relatively common condition caused by the inflammation of a facial nerve, which results in semi-paralysis of the facial muscles. It’s an ‘idiopathic’ condition, meaning that they have no idea why it flares up, and it’s generally a temporary one, providing you diagnose and treat it early enough. So that’s me on a course of steroids for the next week or so, and I’ll probably have to get some physiotherapy on the affected muscles too.
  Bummer, huh? Still, at least it’s not a mini-stroke, which was my first reaction when I caught myself yawning in the mirror. And I’m in good company. Ever wonder where George Clooney’s cute sloppy smile comes from? Yep, it’s Bell’s Palsy. Now all I have to do is get myself properly handsome, steal some talent, become a multi-millionaire and squire half the world’s starlets around the planet, and George and I can hang out on set swapping ‘palsy pals’ gags while the Coen Brothers rush about trying to make THE BIG O as good as George and I deserve.
  It’s only a matter of time, people. You have been warned …

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is it Bell's Palsy or is it really method writing?

Is it possible that you have taken on the physical appearance of Karen King, the father-smiting, motorcycle-riding, Frank-hating, ex-boyfriend-bating, non-trusting, Siberian Timber-Wolf looker-after, leather-clad heroine of The Big O?

Declan Burke said...

I like it ... life imitates art imitates life imitates ... well, you get the drift. Here's hoping I get Ray's quiff too ... Cheers, Dec

Twenty Major said...

Better a Bell's Palsy than the dreaded lurgy. Get well soon...

Barbara said...

Blimey! Glad it's not something worse than looking like George Clooney. Nod nod, wink wink. (Oops, maybe I have it...)

When you gave us the diagnosis I first assumed it was palsy caused by drinking too much Bell's. But that's idot-pathic, not idiopathic.

Bill Crider said...

You and Clooney should make a film together.

Uriah Robinson said...

I am sure you will be fine Dec.
I came across quite a few cases of Bells and some of Bell's Palsy during my career as 'dentist to the people who could not afford private treatment'.
On one occasion the patient's condition cleared up within a week after his wife said they did not have to move house.
I have great respect for the medical profession [both my father's brothers were doctors] but I would let your dentist have a look as we are the experts on the head and neck, although we are a bit hazy about the rest of the body.
The diagram brought back happy memories of many hours memorizing vast chunks of Gray's Anatomy a mere 45 years ago. Now I have trouble remembering who I am. ;o)

Claire Coughlan said...

Ouch. Get well soon.

Peter Rozovsky said...

My doc tells me she thinks I may once have had it. Mine is a heartwarming case of triumph over adversity, really. Think there's a million-selling misery memoir in there somewhere?
==============
Detectives Beyond Borders
"Because Murder Is More Fun Away From Home"
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bookwitch said...

Stop smoking, just in case... Please?

Not interested in George Clooney. Let me know when you start resembling Mark Harmon.

Declan Burke said...

Much obliged, folks. I quite like the idea of it being a whiskey-related illness. And I could quite possibly bear the notion of making a movie with George Clooney. But Mark Harmon? A man has to draw the line somewhere ... Cheers, Dec

cfr said...

I hope it clears up soon, Dec.
And here's another vote for Mark Harmon!

cfr said...

PS Have a great Christening party!

bookwitch said...

By the way, this Bell's Palsy, is it Hemingway or MacLean?

cfr - I knew you and I think alike!

maxine said...

Late to read your post, Dec - my best to you. I have known a couple of people with BP and it cleared up fast in both cases, so I am confident the same will be true in your case.

And thanks for the Tana French book!! A lovely surprise to get that, I had no idea I had screeched in under the wire of your fiendishly difficult competition. You give a tired old blogger cheer! Thanks again.

Corey Wilde said...

Pierce Brosnan had BP once, so I'm voting for him over Harmon. Close? Will there be before and after photos?