On stage, before Parkinson’s tightened its hold, he could prowl, growl, sing, scream, grin and swear in a way denied him on the page. Depending on the audience reaction he could improvise and embellish his stories or change tracks altogether. ... Yet on the page, he admits, his stories appear “lumpy and strange ... a merry-go-round of memories, observations, fantasies and ad libs” without any obvious structure. Inevitably, they are also no longer as fresh, funny or freewheeling: ad libs, after all, stop being ad libs when they appear as ink on a page.