Come in to our book store on any Thursday, Friday or Saturday and you will see people in the humor section. We are very happy to be so close to Barker's Bar & Grill and San Pedro Cafe because people come in before and after meals.
Brian is skeptical about whether some of these humor titles will sell but I say 'Heck Ya.' They make perfect holiday gifts. They’re perfect for the very same reason groups of two-to-four diners gravitate toward them laughing away the wait for their table.
I have to mention one book first and if it offends you, I’m sorry! Please keep reading. It has been a big seller this year. "Go The F To Sleep" by Adam Mansbach. We’ve had a few offended shoppers but most people agree with the humor of trying to get a child to stay in bed and well….you know….. It is not in the children’s section and it’s a joke. Samuel L. Jackson’s deep, calming voice is perfect for the audio version too.
Another recent parody type book I can safely rate G is "Goodnight iPad" is humorous and thought provoking. The illustrations and style could be mistaken for "Goodnight Moon." It takes many pages to unplug all of the family’s electronic devices.
If I’m going to mention people being offended, I have to confess to not finding another book funny: "When Parents Text." Not funny because I probably could have many texts in that book. OK fine, it is funny. Go ahead Gen Y, laugh at all the baby boomers trying to stay connected in this hyper tech’d out world. Ha ha. Spoiler alert: parents text long rambling messages that defeat the purpose of a text.
One more with a crude title that is admittedly funny is "Crap At My Parent’s House." People stand around at the store and laugh at all the pictures of strange old stuff your parents refuse to throw away. Crocheted doll covers for spare toilet paper rolls. My mom kept Avon in business in the 70s and refused to throw any of it away well into the 90s. I suppose "crap" is a bit subjective. (Never thought I’d ever write that sentence.)
I have always been a fan of humorous memoirs. Tina Fey’s "Bossypants." Fey has funny stories about her childhood in addition to behind the scenes tales of Saturday Night Live. Mindy Kaling who plays Kelly Kapoor on The Office has a new book "Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?" To give credit where credit is due she also produces and writes for "The Office." Next time you’re waiting for a table at San Pedro, come in and look at the adorable, hilarious childhood photos in her book.
Of course there is always "The Far Side," "Calvin and Hobbes" and "Bloom County." Gary Trudeau has a complete retrospective of "Doonesbury" out right now. "The Onion" has a holiday book out this year that we have along with their other books. It would be hard to go wrong giving someone an Onion book unless they have a serious sense of humor deficit.
There is a trend in humor lately where blogs get published as a compilation in book form. I think they both have their place. I would argue for the book over blog because at some point everyone has to stop surfing, right? Cake Wrecks, Awkward Family Photos and some of the ones mentioned above are harmless opportunities for a laugh while opening presents with your crazy wacky family.