Christopher Miller’s American Cornball: A Laffopedic Guide to the Formerly Funny (Harper, 2014) mentioned on this site back in the summer of 2013, is out today. There is no way anyone interested in humor won’t find this book essential reading. Some of the contents: Bananas and Banana Peels, Sausage and Hot Dogs, Cops and Nightsticks, Moochers, Hypnotism, and Back Seat Drivers. All these topics and many many more are explored in detail, and are accompanied by a wheelbarrow full of illustrations (the book also includes a number of New Yorker cartoons).
I can’t remember a time when New Yorker artists have been so honored and acknowledged. Three memoirs by the magazine’s contributors hit the New York Times Best Seller list: Mimi Pond’s Over Easy, Bob Mankoff’s How About Never? Is Never Good for You? and Roz Chast’s Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant. Liza Donnelly’s Women on Men was selected as a finalist for The Thurber Prize for American Humor. Alison Bechdel was recently awarded a MacArthur grant, and just yesterday it was announced that Ms. Chast’s memoir is on the long list for the National Book Award in nonfiction. Congratulations to each and every one!
Links to websites:
Last summer we checked in with the great New Yorker artist, Anatol Kovarsky for an update on his life and work. If we ever needed proof that the saying “once a cartoonist, always a cartoonist” is true, Kovarsky is that proof. At 95, he’s unable to let something slip by without graphic comment.
Ink Spill received the above piece from him yesterday. When he saw “Cindy Sherman’s 29 Blond Wigs” in The New York Times T Magazine on August 24th, “It seemed,” his daughter wrote me in an email, “to be asking for Kovarsky to doodle on it.”
Note: A version of my Kovarsky Ink Spill piece was published on The New Yorker’s website. Link to it here.
The New Yorker Festival program has been up on their website for a few days. Besides the panel on Saul Steinberg (“One Hundred Years of Saul Steinberg”) mentioned here the other day, there’ll be a conversation between Bob Mankoff and Roz Chast, both of whom have published memoirs this year: Chast’s Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? and Mankoff’s How About Never? Is Never Good For You?
Here’s a link to the info on the Steinberg panel.
And here’s a link to the Mankoff/Chast talk.
Link to Bob Mankoff’s website.
Link to Roz Chast’s website.
The 100th anniversary of Saul Steinberg’s birth (he was born June 15, 1914, and died May 12, 1999) will be celebrated at the upcoming New Yorker Festival as well as other venues in and around New York (and later in the year, across the seas). Here’s the online notice on newyorker.com by Ian Frazier.
And here’s a link to the Steinberg Foundation site where you’ll find a complete calendar of centennial events.
Also: Don’t forget to check out Deirdre Bair’s Saul Steinberg: A Biography. (Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, 2012)
Also of interest: The Saul Steinberg Foundation’s 93(!) page Corrections to the Biography.
The New Yorker cartoonist, Mick Stevens, has illustrated a musical instruction book, The Lobster Theory. Go to Mick’s site here to learn more about it (and more about Mick’s other work).
Bob Mankoff, the New Yorker‘s current cartoon editor, and the cartoonist, Roz Chast will be speaking at the Brooklyn Book Festival. Time Out New York has all the info here.
Andy Friedman, a man of many hats, is interviewed by Story Matters. Fans of Mr. Friedman may also want to look at the New Yorker work by Larry Hat.