Offers a collection of essays that shares reflections on aging, poker, police corruption, acting, and single-malt scotch
David Mamet has said that if he hadn't found a life in the theater, it is very likely he would have become a criminal. In Jafsie and John Henry the master improviser takes on a range of roles and personae in a lively and personal way. Though older and wiser than when he first shocked theatergoers with the play Sexual Perversity in Chicago, Mamet remains one of the most provocative and iconoclastic voices in American writing today, with an idiom so distinct, so American, that it defies comparison. Mamet in this diverse collection turns his unique lens on subjects ranging from houses to Hollywood producers. As the writer turns fifty, he not only shares his reflections on the nature of creativity and the challenges and rewards of aging but delves into his most intimate obsessions. From a description of the labyrinthine psychology of poker to sharp sallies on moviemaking gibberish and the meaning of macho, Jafsie and John Henry is knit together by Mamet's unique perspective and inimitably spare wit. Oscar Wilde, the tower of Babel, The House Committee on Un-American Activities, Jewish scripture, police corruption, the art of acting, and single-malt scotch are all grist for the mill of Mamet's quicksilver mind. He reminisces about his first car, muses on the Lindbergh trial, laments the loss of the art of knifemaking, and lambastes Hollywood culture. The perennial outsider, David Mamet gives us an inside look at the unique world of an American icon and an unromantic perspective on the changing nature of creativity in an artist's life.