Sunday, December 06, 2009

Kick the Habit


Things off my fridge department -- the above is either a PSA from Czech soccer club AC Sparta Praha sponsored by Nicorette, or just a Nicorette ad. I'm too lazy to translate. On one level, the message is pretty clear: don't smoke (note red circle). But the other eight circles make it confusing. Just what are they saying -- cigarettes should be playing soccer instead of being lit?

CIGARETTES CAN'T PLAY SOCCER. THEY HAVE NO LEGS.

Anyway. #81 -- "Born Standing Up" by Steve Martin

I'm not a big stand-up comedy fan, so I ignored this when it came out; I generally like Martin's pieces in the New Yorker, and I liked the excerpt of this when it was published in the same magazine, but not enough to push aside a dozen Balkan books for it. Picking it up a bit late, though, it's an interesting read. An in-depth analysis of how he developed and honed his craft, and then (the most interesting part, for me) why he quit doing stand-up. No false glory and no false humility -- it's a pretty honest read.

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