Author: Steven Pitt
Publisher: Bridgeross Communications
ISBN: 978-0-9810037-7-1

Click Here To Purchase My Life and Other Lies: Tales from the Writer's List

How fortunate some of us are to be born with the gift of a keen imagination, creativity and reason. Even luckier are those blessed with a good sense of humor enabling them to provide amusing commentary pertaining to a variety of topics. Steve Pitt is one such privileged writer, as exemplified with his My Life and Other Lies.

According to Pitt's Biography, he has been a professional writer for more than thirty years and his writing contributions have appeared in such Canadian publications as Chatelaine, Canadian Living, Legion Magazine, Toronto Life, Canadian Family, Rotunda Canadian Health, The Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail , and the Toronto Sun. In 1980, Pitt won the Periodical Distributors Author's Award for humor. His debut book, Rain Tonight: A Tale of Hurricane Hazel, was nominated for the Silver Birch, Rocky Mountain, and Red Cedar Awards.

In addition to being a writer, Pitt has held approximately forty-seven job positions including movie extra, army reserve soldier, dishwasher, farmhand, martial arts instructor, bartender, youth outreach worker, armoured-truck guard, Yukon gold prospector, manager of a shelter for homeless men, goose rancher, lay minster, bar bouncer, resort cook, and stat-at-home dad. You can well imagine the gold mine of material these various jobs can provide a writer, especially one that enjoys making fun at life.

Pitt informs us in the Preface to My Life and Other Lies, his “goofy” stories began as casual postings on a professional writer's listerserv (“L”). These writing lists provided him with the opportunity to write humor-something he rarely could do professionally. As he states: “I rarely saw a topic that I could contribute to intelligently-so I contributed unintelligently. I told stories, most of them, based on my chequered past.”

Pitt's strokes are broad and varied, as he delivers hilarious vignettes with an eye to real people and situations. One example drawn from Pitt's past occupations is Once Upon a Time on Bay Street based on Pitt's stint as a armoured-truck guard for the Loomis Armoured Car company and his encounter with a bumbling police officer. Pitt informs us that in the 1980s the city council of Toronto decided to become very aggressive with drivers that stopped on downtown main streets between 4:00 and 6:00 pm. There were to be no exceptions and the regulations included armoured trucks, even if it meant moving huge bags of cash through public spaces. Pitt seems to be having a great deal of nasty fun, as he recounts how he came in contact with a law enforcement officer whom he describes as: “a stick insect traffic cadet still trying to lose that fresh-baked reek of the police academy complete with blue bum freezer jacket, black leather gauntlets, and riding britches tuck into impossibly shiny knee-high leather boots..... He walked like John Wayne but looked like a Marvin the Marian Pez dispenser.” You get the picture! And his description of Constable Pez jumping off a three-wheeled motorcycle, and nearly killing himself in the process, in order to admonish him, reminded me of a Jerry Lewis slap-stick scene. Lewis would have been perfect for the part, particularly when Pitt refuses to roll down the window of the truck to receive a ticket.

Another hilarious scene is recounted in And the Horse You Rode In On wherein Pitt agreed to walk his South Asian sister-in-law's wispy haired Chihuahua. I love his description of the dog's time for official business: “After two minutes of bulging eyes and gnashing teeth, Mange unloads a trio of olive-pit size turds that would make a constipated hamster snigger.” Here again Pitt comes into contact with a law officer or as Pitt names him, a “Pooper Trooper” and what follows is absolutely hilarious.

Combining witty humor with the absurd, Pitt reminds us that having a good sense of humor enables us to tolerate and sometimes triumph over some annoying and even terrible events that befall us from time-to-time during our life.

Click Here To Purchase My Life and Other Lies: Tales from the Writer's List