|Sarah Vowell: Pinched face, tiny voice, booming intellect, Dorothy Parker funny|
Na, na, na, na, na ...
Dinner with one of my literary heroes is not something I get to do every week. Sarah Vowell is--in my mind--a latter day Dorothy Parker, without the booze, with the voice, with the wit, with the enormous talent. She writes about history, which doesn't always ring with logic, but watch her here talking to John Stewart on Comedy Central and you'll get an idea just what a hoot history can be.
Her newest book, Unfamiliar Fishes, is about the Americanized history of Hawaii and how it all came about in 1898 during the U.S. "orgy of colonialism." I guess you might call her irreverent. The right wing probably wouldn't have much use for her.
I have before me (like four inches from my left hand, as I type) Assassination Vacation, wherein Miss SarahBelle bops around the country like somebody with too many bonus miles, plopping down in places where political types have been killed. Sound like a laff riot yet? It is. And damn if you don't learn a bunch of stuff that'll work later for you on Jeopardy!
She shows up everywhere: movies (Violet Parr in "The Incredibles"), best-seller lists (all her books), television shows (Stuart, Letterman), Public Radio ("This American Life")--all the places I just love to visit.
So tomorrow Sarah Vowell is showing up at the Hollins theater for a free talk. Yep. I said "free talk." That means you might want to get there about 5 o'clock for a seat at the 7 p.m. showing. I'll be there. Hope I get a seat. We'll be coming over later (heh, heh, heh ...).