I Am The Loudest!

I’ve had a New Yorker subscription for nearly a decade now and the single best humor writer I have read is Simon Rich. He has all the qualities of an author I would generally despise, for both aesthetic and personal reasons: preciousness, McSweeney’s-style absurdity with double the wordcount, an age within two years of my own. And yet, even without looking at the byline, his pieces crack me up like no one else’s in the magazine. Here is an excerpt from “Hey, Look”, a log of imagined eavesdropping:

Fifteen:

“Hey, look, that kid is reading ‘Howl,’ by Allen Ginsberg.”

“Wow. He must be some kind of rebel genius.”

“I’m impressed by the fact that he isn’t trying to call attention to himself.”

“Yeah, he’s just sitting silently in the corner, flipping the pages and nodding, with total comprehension.”

“It’s amazing. He’s so absorbed in his book that he isn’t even aware that a party is going on around him, with dancing and fun.”

“Why aren’t any girls going over and talking to him?”

“I guess they’re probably a little intimidated by his brilliance.”

“Well, who wouldn’t be?”

“I’m sure the girls will talk to him soon.”

“It’s only a matter of time.”

If your formative years were anything like my own, that should sound embarrassingly familiar. Here is the rest of his work for the New Yorker:

Who Is Alex Trebek?

Your New College Graduate: A Parents’ Guide

Play Nice

Animal Tales

Hey, Look

The Wisdom of Children

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