Thursday, April 29, 2010

Notes on Pop Culture: Dave Barry in NYT, 'Lost' Interview Has Me Worried

Dave Barry Featured in Sunday's New York Times

One of my favorite writers is a humorist. His name is Dave Barry. When I was teaching journalism classes at the University of Massachusetts, I frequently distributed Barry's columns to my students and, in at least one class, assigned a collection of his columns as required reading. His writing is funny, keenly observant and down-to-earth, as well as very, very clever. Ever tried to write funny? It's hard. Believe me.

This weekend the Pulitzer Prize winning Barry, who has a new book coming out next week, I'll Mature When I'm Dead (*clearing throat and hoping anyone who's looking to get me a Mother's Day gift takes advantage of the link*), is featured in the New York Times Sunday Magazine.

Since he's in the spotlight of the "Domains" column, there are photos of Barry's house and various stuff in his home, including a photo of a toilet. (It's unclear if that's actually Dave Barry's toilet or not.) If you're a longtime fan of Barry's columns -- or one of my former students -- you might be familar with his campaign to improve the flushing power of toilets. On his toilet crusade, Barry said:

"Years ago we moved to a house that had toilets that did not work well. The plumber told me Congress had mandated that all new toilets use less water. I spent more time on the low-flow toilet than any columnist in America. . . We have some low-flow toilets and one standard one. I tell guests, 'If you really need a toilet that can do the job, go to that one.'"

God do I miss his weekly columns.

Lost Interview Has Me Worried

The Hollywood Reporter has published an interview with one of the brains behind Lost, Damon Lindelof. Why does it worry me? First of all, there's the lead of the story:

"Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof tells THR the crew built new sets for the final moments of the ABC hit drama and that fans should expect to ask themselves, 'What did they mean by this?' after the show ends."

Then there was this:

"As for the nagging question of whether fans be satisfied by the ending, Lindelof said the finale will not employ a Sopranos-style fake-out, but he emphasized that viewers will definitely be left with questions."

So when this ends, I won't have a satisfied smile on my face? I'll be asking, "What the hell just happened?" and know that there'll be no more, no answers? Say it isn't so.

Image credit: Colby Katz/New York Times.

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