Chrestomathy
Yet another voice in the cacophony.
Tuesday, December 11 2018 @ 12:38 AM PST
 Topics  
Books
Fiction
Food
Kitsch
Life
Movies
Music
Philosophy
Politics
Sports
Technology
Travel

 What's New  
STORIES
No new stories

COMMENTS last 48 hrs
No new comments

 Events  
There are no upcoming events

 User Functions  
Username:

Password:

Don't have an account yet? Sign up as a New User

 Other Stuff  
< ? bostonites # >
The Syndicate
GPG/PGP Key


 Bathroom books   
 Author:  matt
 Dated:  Sunday, October 10 2004 @ 01:28 AM PDT
 Viewed:  1389 times  
BooksIn the past week or so I read (or re-read) three books whose collective theme, in retrospect, is one of cynicism, but they are coincidentally all perfect reading material for when you're on the hopper.

First up, and least cynical of them all, is a collection of travel writing called Not So Funny When it Happened. Featuring excerpts from such authors as Dave Barry, Bill Bryson and David Sedaris, it's a self-described compendium of travel humor and misadventure. I highly recommend it.

Next (in order of cynicism) is The Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook: Dating & Sex. This book is hilarious, if not altogether the most practical self-help manual out there. It opens with a chapter describing the steps to determine if your date is an axe murderer, and things go downhill from there.

Finally, and what has to be the most patently cynical book I've ever read (including the works of the great Russian writers), I leave you with The Pessimist's Guide to History: An Irresistible Compendium of Catastrophes, Barbarities, Massacres and Mayhem from The Big Bang to the New Millennium. In what can only be described as a prescient moment, the book ends with this:

On New Year's Day, despite a few minor glitches, ATMs dispensed cash, utilities functioned, planes were still flying in the air, no nuclear weapons were deployed, terrorists did not strike, and as dawn broke around the world, the earth was still rotating on its axis.

It was enough to bring tears to a pessimist's eyes. Of course, we never know what's just around the corner, do we?



 What's Related  
  • Not So Funny When it Ha...
  • The Worst Case Scenario...
  • The Pessimist's Guide t...
  • More by matt
  • More from Books

  •  Story Options  
  • Mail Story to a Friend
  • Printable Story Format


  • Bathroom books
    Authored by: matilda on Tuesday, November 05 2013 @ 12:25 AM PST
    Everything sounds nice. I'm looking for a theme for one of my
    papers in literature and I have cynicism as my first choice.
    Thus, I found this post, googling it with hopes of finding
    interesting resources. I want to read the first book you
    listed which is about travel. I think, instead of getting my
    paper from an assortment of essay
    writers
    online, I might write this one under the
    suspicion that I might actually enjoy it.