John Hodgman, Drunk on Brandy, Reveals He Was a Total Alpha-Male Jock in High School
Of course that's not true at all. Last night Hodgman appeared at the Warehouse Theater to read from the new paperback edition of his book, "The Areas of My Expertise." The hour that followed proved I have no business attempting to be funny in this post. I should confine my attempting to be funny to the shower, the inside of my car, and in the confessional. Additionally, singer/beard enthusiast Jonathon Coulton led the packed theater in such traditional zombie folk favorites as "All We Want to Do is Eat Your Brain." I was struck by something during Hodgman's performance (which included a thoroughly satisfying and useful presentation on Hobo matters): comfortingly round noggin' and brown corduroy suits aside, he is not the kind of guy you'd run up to and hug like a teddy bear. To the contrary, during the question and answer portion (conducted via walkie talkie) he was actually a little terrifying. Although I'd imagine the overwhelming number of fellows in the audience deciding they were going to try to be funny with their "wacky" questions--despite his specific prohibition of "wacky" questions just prior to the session starting--was tiresome. To his credit, he merely reduced them to rubble with his acid wit in front of the crowd and moved on. There's always been only one dry, brown suit-wearing humorist in my life, and that is Robert Benchley. But for some reason, since the mid-1940s, I'm finding it harder to locate Benchley on tour anywhere, so I will keep an eye on Hodgman's touring schedule.