What I’m reading

I’d heard the name Josh Gondelman for years off and on, but particularly recently on various comedy podcasts I started seeking out as some levity to working in a news environment where I hear close to four hours of (almost entirely negative, often demoralizing) news a day. And lately I’ve heard his name more often, because this book had been published and was duly getting promoted in comedy circles.

As we’d be in the poorhouse if I bought every book my family and I wanted, I put a hold request for Nice Try at the local library. A few weeks later, I got a digital tap on the shoulder telling me it was ready for me to download it. I had to delay it a couple of times for being in the midst of other books–I’ve never been good at keeping multiple books going at once–but once I was finally able to sit down with it, I opened it eagerly.

I’m less than half way through it so far, but can sincerely say it’s the funniest book I’ve read in a while. Years, at least.

It’s not all jokey, there are some tender moments in the autobiographical content as well. And whether serious or light, Gondelman brings an excellent, easy style that makes it a pleasure to read. It’s so good I may still buy it anyway, just to have a copy that my wife will get a chance to read–she’s not a big e-reader fan anyway, and I’m already hoping even I’ll be done reading it before it evaporates on its due date, let alone her having a crack at it–and I may buy copies for other people as well, lest they happen to overlook my recommendation to them.

(Ignore my shrewd recommendations for them, will they? Well let’s see what happens when… I buy the book for them instead!
I… I mean… they could still just easily ignore it, I guess. But it seems less likely that way. Or maybe just more of a personal insult?

Huh. I never really thought about it that way.

What the hell, guys?


Hmm? Oh… right… so anyway…)

With the world on pause as seven billion of us contend with a deadly new virus, as protests are turning violent in the U.S. with yet another needless killing at the hands of police, as everything seems to be hammering us with negativity and suffering, a book that offers any enjoyable escapism and humour–and in this case even genuine laughter, which isn’t common for me as I read–is a much-needed relief.

This is that book.

Read it when you can.