It’s All In The Game – Preface

By A. Charles Corotis


It was a long, long time ago under circumstances of exceedingly pleasant remembrance that I once was told, “You make love like you write: sometimes tenderly, sometimes violently.”

The combined limitations of literary dissemination and advancing age make academic the most intriguing phase of that analogy. What follows on these pages are examples of the belletristic gamut.

It has been no easy matter to sift through hundreds of tracts and select a few for purposes of publication. It’s almost like choosing from among one’s own children. Man and boy, I’ve been setting down my observations and notions on a wide range of subjects for more than thirty years, in daily and weekly newspapers and trade magazines of one kind and another. A man can conceive a lot of manuscriptive siblings that way.

What we’ve tried to do here, the publishers and I, is serve up a smorgasbordic indictment that is reasonably representative. Variety has been the keynote of our quest. Thus our hors d’oeuvres range from the light-hearted, sometimes flippant, through music, sports, travel, even philosophy — all the way to canapes sober and earnest. In this collection you will find a few niblets of alleged humor, a few hopefully poetic excursions into verse, some tidbits smacking of the sentimental, others mercilessly lampooning, twitting alike the large and the small.

For in these past three decades of typewriter pounding, your correspondent has tried to be a bit of everything — reporter, essayist, biographer, dramatist, poet, novelist, wit, critic, scenarist, in some cases an amanuensis seeking to record for a newspaper’s circulation those moving and delightful excerpts from the classics.

I regard this last as far from the least important, and I’ll tell you why. It is not easy, for example, for many of us to digest all of Carlyle, yet some of the most beautiful and inspiring passages ever created came from his pen, and such nuggets need to be dredged from the great ore fields of Cheyne Row. One needn’t be an intellectual to appreciate those extracts any more than he must be a “highbrow” lover of opera to enjoy the Habanera from “Carmen” or the Barcarolle from “Tales of Hoffman,” to thrill to “la donna e mobile” from “Rigoletto” or “mi chiamano Mimi” from “La Boheme.”

Not only do the score or more of pieces that follow ramble over a wide range of subjects; they cover a considerable period of time, too. This condition makes for some opinionated inconsistencies, even conflicts. I realize, for instance, that my spoofing of television, made in the ignorant innocence of life before I became a video addict, will receive the derision it deserves from those of my regular readers who recognize how important a part this miracle of free entertainment has come to play in my life, but in such instances I can do nothing but salt down my crow and make it as palatable as possible.

Some among these selections, I hope most sincerely, will please you. The versatility of the subject matter should see to that, although by the same token it virtually rules out any chance of acceptance of all by anyone.

You may, for example, shy away from violence. In that case, try a little tenderness.

See you in a sequel?


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.