What to Read/Watch This Weekend: All Things John Hodgman

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This post is in honor of the release of writer, storyteller, and comedian John Hodgman’s new book, “That is All” — which is a funny thing, because I haven’t actually read it yet. It’s not available electronically, and my hard copy won’t arrive ’til Tuesday. But if you’ve never read John Hodgman or heard him speak, seriously, drop everything right now. See if you don’t love your fellow humans a little more when you’re done.

1. “Apologia to My Second Child”: I’ve recommended this one before. Classic Hodgman blend of witty, poignant, and humble.

2. Aliens, Love — Where Are They?: Hodgman spinning tales at TED.

3. Get a Mac campaign: Hodgman played the PC in this famous ad campaign.

Have a great weekend, and let me know if you enjoy these links.

 


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4 Comments

  1. Phil Holmes on 08.11.2011 at 18:46 (Reply)

    Susan, thank you for posting these links. A couple of years ago I spent a very enjoyable couple of hours surfing through the dozens of “I’m a Mac, and I’m a PC” commercials on youtube, and it was wonderful to do it again - and finally to meet the man behind the PC. I’ve always thought the casting of those commercials was splendid (I’ve loved Justin Long, the Mac, since his scene-stealing acting in “Galaxy Quest”).

    Hodgman’s work makes me wonder what he is like in person: how much of the persona he spins during his monologue is truly him? Like many introverts, I imagine that he uses a sort of enabling mask when he works (I almost typed ennobling, which is an intriguing slip). He’s one of those humorists whose ostensible honesty is still, for some reason, not quite trustworthy - and I do not mean in any way to condemn him. He is so good at presenting his “humble nerd” face, but I do not wish to swallow the bait entirely; the lure is almost too perfect to be believed.

    If what he projects truly is a close approximation of his actual self, then what a pleasant oxymoron he is: someone who is apparently quite introverted, but who is capable of great disclosure.

    Great stuff. Inspiring stuff. Thank you again.

    1. Susan Cain on 08.11.2011 at 19:33 (Reply)

      Thank you so much for that comment, Phil. It’s always so great to know when others love the things you love. That’s also an interesting point you raise, wondering who he is REALLY. It definitely seems plausible to me to be capable of great, and sincere, disclosure when mediated through art (writing, spoken word, whatever). But now I’m curious. I’ll let you know if I learn anything more about him.

  2. Tracy on 10.11.2011 at 07:27 (Reply)

    Thanks for shating! I think I also saw an article by John Hodgman in this month’s Bon Appetite. Love his observations and his use of words. What a gift, to combine great sincerity with humorous insights. I find his style to be pretty refreshing. (Phil’s comment is a great read to . . . . . makes you wonder!) :-)

  3. Lynn Bridge on 17.11.2011 at 09:31 (Reply)

    Funny man, and I had not heard of him until now. Thanks for cluing me in.

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