Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Up Late with Liebowitz
Let me say right now that this isn't going to have anything to do with editing, collaborating, or the trials of freelancing--deadlines, waiting for payments, getting people to get back to you... It's just about the simple pleasure of staying up past my normal weekday bedtime last night to watch Fran Liebowitz's documentary Public Speaking and laughing out loud all alone (except for the dog) in my room while said dog dozed contentedly with her head draped over my shoulder. It strikes me that real wit--albeit of the acerbic New York variety--is thin on the ground these days. There were no barbs based on current events--the kind of humor best left to late night talk show hosts--just the deadpan delivery of pithy truths about the large and small "facts of life." One observation was that Dorothy Parker's movie reviews are still funny more than half a century after they were written, even if you've never heard of--much less seen--the movie. That seems like a good litmus test for true humor. We could do with a lot more of it in these parlous times. If you didn't see the program, try to catch a rerun (there are always reruns on HBO) or look for it on HBO on Demand. Meanwhile, have a great Thanksgiving.