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If you were Samuel Beckett, who would you want to talk cricket with?

Bowled on 1st October, 2013 at 16:10 by
Category: Extras

For those who don’t know, Samuel Beckett was a playwright. There is also a fictional character called Sam Beckett who was played by Scott Bakula in Quantum Leap, but this story isn’t about him. It’s about the guy who wrote Waiting For Godot. The playwright Samuel Beckett also played two first-class cricket matches for Dublin University against Northamptonshire, whereas Scott Bakula’s cricketing pedigree is questionable at best.

In 1953, Beckett moved to an area 40 miles north of Paris. He built a cottage there and made friends with one of the blokes who helped him – some fella named Boris Rousimoff.

Later on, this Rousimoff character had an issue because, as unlikely as it sounds, his son became too massive to fit on the school bus and he couldn’t afford a bigger car. Fortunately, Beckett had a big pick-up truck, so he offered to drive this kid to school each day.

What do an Irish Nobel Prize winner and an oversized French 12-year-old of Bulgarian ancestry talk to each other about? Well, apparently they would spend all of their commutes talking about cricket.

Oh, and by the way, the kid was André the Giant.

Thanks to The Rosser for bringing this tale to our attention.

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  1. Deep Cower   //   October 1st, 2013 at 16:30

    That’s quite a wonderful story. But you left us hanging there – what’s the moral of it? I am torn between ‘eat more’ and ‘buy a pickup truck’. Neither of which particularly appeal to me.

    • King Cricket   //   October 1st, 2013 at 16:38

      All the best stories are open-ended and allow the reader to draw his or her own conclusions.

    • Deep Cower   //   October 1st, 2013 at 17:08

      Alright, in that case I’ll go with ‘Win Nobel Prize’.

  2. sam   //   October 1st, 2013 at 17:08

    Saw a wonderful production of Waiting for Godot a few weeks ago. His most “mainstream” and “accessible” work. Some of it is just nuts. See ‘Not I’, ‘Footfalls’ and ‘Rockabye’.

  3. Scott 2.0   //   October 2nd, 2013 at 10:23

    Try “Endgame”. I had to act that out in front of my entire school, not through choice either. My grandfather, who at the time was an eighty year old thatcher of an extremely rustic persuasion, was probably as flummoxed as Rousimoff Jr when confronted with the front foot no ball rule.

  4. Chuck   //   October 2nd, 2013 at 12:43

    Samuel Beckett liked to walk. In the strict sense, these were long walks, often at night, around Dublin and then Paris. But I kinda like to think he walked in cricket as well. Only Nobel Prize winner to appear in Wisden, so they say.

  5. King Cricket   //   October 2nd, 2013 at 13:22

    Why is no-one mentioning André the Giant?

    • string   //   October 2nd, 2013 at 14:57

      Read the “Personal Life” section in his Wikipedia entry:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andr%C3%A9_the_Giant#Personal_life

      What’s not to love? It’s no surprise that Beckett took such a shine to him. After all, he was a time traveller, as you’ve mentioned above.

  6. D Charlton   //   October 2nd, 2013 at 13:42

    Oh boy.

  7. The Other Ed   //   October 2nd, 2013 at 16:08

    Inconceivable.

  8. SimonC   //   October 3rd, 2013 at 11:24

    Finally I can join in with my girlfriend’s literary pals’ highbrow conversations about Beckett.

    “Hey, I know a thing about Beckett,” I’ll say. “He used to drive André the Giant to school in his pickup truck.”

    “Who’s André the Giant?” they’ll ask.

    “Um,” I’ll say.

    Thanks!

    • King Cricket   //   October 3rd, 2013 at 11:27

      At that point, you make reference to his appearance in the film version of The Princess Bride by William Goldman.

      You can string the conversation out for at least another eight seconds before it implodes.

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