Saturday, November 29, 2008

Another good writer disguised as a journalist

I found some more humorous writing in The New York Times, this time from Towle Tompkins. Tompkins offers three (now) articles about the East German Trabant, a car with the soul of a cold war tin can that fell out of fashion when the Berlin Wall came down. Apparently the Trabant is back, and Tompkins is celebrating with sparkling prose dotted with just the right balance of humor and insight: "The good news is that the Trabant is twice as powerful as a Sears Craftsman two-stage snow blower; the bad news is that it’s twice as loud." Tompkins's series would be well-positioned as the run-up to a charming book.

So perhaps you ask, "Hey Book Blogger, you're a Washingtonian, so why don't you point out great humor writing in The Washington Post?" The Post does have occasional writing that makes me smile, but much of it is too often obvious and lowbrow. I don't respond to it in an "I'm above this" way, but rather in a "potty humor is lame and too easy" way. Some of the Post's writers have earned kudos for their humor writing, and the recent humor Pulitzer was well deserved, but the day-to-day level of the wit could be better. If I see something, though, I'll post it.

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