need more stuff?

September 13, 2003

Why is this man

Daniel Radosh

Why is this man laughing?
OK, he's not. But there is a picture of him laughing (which I couldn't find, so I guess there is something Google can't do) that is published every year with that caption in Esquire's Dubious Achievement Awards. For the magazine's 70th anniversary, six humor writers were asked to propose, for the first time, an answer to that question. They must've been turned down by a lot of people, because they eventually came to me. The resulting quiz -- cleverly titled "Why Is This Man Really Laughing," is not online, but you can find it easily on the last page of the October issue. Stephen Sherrill, of course, has the funniest answer, but I think I hold my own.

Also in that issue, a pull-out reprint of Esquire's all-time best story, Frank Sinatra Has A Cold, by Gay Talese, which alone is worth the cover price (unless you want to read a free bootleg version on the Web, I mean). The runners-up are also worth reading (and the free versions are authorized).

I will leave any snide remarks that long-lived magazines inevitably open themselves to when looking back on their glory days to, say, TMFTML or The Antic Muse.

Powered by
Movable Type 3.2