Beerplugs [Limerick]

There was a man with a fondness for beer.
There was nothing else that he held so dear.
Beer-goggles were his Cupid,
& beerplugs muted his stupid:
though it remained for the plugless to hear.

Mocking Monkey [Common Meter]

One day I passed a gray monkey,
and something made me turn.
I caught the primate in the act 
of issuing a burn.

Its eyes were closed; its tongue stuck out.
Its head twisted to tease.
And when it saw me seeing it,
for a sec, it did freeze. 

As if not a thing had happened,
and it was not to blame.
Before I could make my rebuke
it multiplied my shame.

by blowing me a raspberry
followed by a big smirk.
Then it scrambled away before
I went truly berserk.

BOOK REVIEW: Funny on Purpose by Joe Randazzo

Funny on Purpose: The Definitive Guide to an Unpredictable Career in Comedy: Standup + Improv + Sketch + TV + Writing + Directing + YouTubeFunny on Purpose: The Definitive Guide to an Unpredictable Career in Comedy: Standup + Improv + Sketch + TV + Writing + Directing + YouTube by Joe Randazzo
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Amazon.in Page

Get Speechify to make any book an audiobook

Former editor of the hilarious faux-newspaper, The Onion, (Joe Randazzo) provides a broad overview of the humor creation industry, and the many jobs, therein. Whether you’re interested in scriptwriting, performing stand-up, or starting a YouTube channel that provides color commentary of crippling skateboarding accidents, this book has tips and insight into how said job works, how to do the job, and how to avoid the pitfalls. And, as expected, the book offers humor throughout. That said, the first priority is educational, so one shouldn’t expect a laugh-a-minute humor extravaganza.

The book is divided into five parts. The first four parts delved into the various humor content creation jobs (writing, performing, making pictures, and making internet content,) and the last part is about the common business aspects like understanding intellectual property rights, knowing the difference between an agent and a manager, and learning how to get people to give you money for a product you don’t yet have.

One nice feature the book offers is brief interviews with various experts such as Judd Apatow, Weird Al, Joan Rivers, many people you’ve never heard of but I’m sure are good at what they do, and a few that you will have heard of if you have obsessive niche tastes in humor. The interviews are short, but it does help to have insight from someone whose life has largely focused on a particular dimension of humor creation. Randazzo has a diverse background, including writing, performing, and television and internet work, but there are fine insights to be gained from a specialist.

I got a lot out of this book and would recommend it for those interested in the humor content creation industrial complex.

View all my reviews

ESSAY REVIEW: The Kentucky Derby is Decadent and Depraved by Hunter S. Thompson

The Kentucky Derby Is Decadent and DepravedThe Kentucky Derby Is Decadent and Depraved by Hunter S. Thompson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Online Available Free: Grantland

Available within the collection: The Great Shark Hunt

This story is cited as the first work of gonzo journalism, a highly entertaining style of immersion journalism which takes liberties with objectivity and factual detail for comedic effect or heightened narrative impact. The Kentucky Derby is more setting than subject of the story. It’s Thompson attempting to throw together coverage of the horse race at the last minute for Scanlan’s Monthly, a magazine that existed less than a year. So, the story is as much Thompson racing around trying to con his way into some press passes as he and the graphic artist sent by the magazine go on a booze-fueled junket on and around the race track grounds.

The story is laugh-out-loud funny in places, and features Thompson’s irreverent and fast-paced style throughout. It really was something new. Thompson, apparently, thought he’d failed completely when he sent in the story, but the response indicated that – rather – he’d invented something new, something for which there would be a huge market.

It’s definitely worth reading this story, just don’t expect deep insight into the horse racing tradition of Kentucky.

View all my reviews

Zoo Overkill [Limerick]

There was a Zoo where the creatures were plastic.
Said the new guy, "I don't mean to be drastic,
but since our beasts aren't real,
let's lose the cages of steel,
we'll have the first petting zoo lion -- it'll be fantastic!"