You may only read this site if you've purchased Our Kampf from Amazon or Powell's or me
• • •
"Mike and Jon, Jon and Mike—I've known them both for years, and, clearly, one of them is very funny. As for the other: truly one of the great hangers-on of our time."—Steve Bodow, head writer, The Daily Show

"Who can really judge what's funny? If humor is a subjective medium, then can there be something that is really and truly hilarious? Me. This book."—Daniel Handler, author, Adverbs, and personal representative of Lemony Snicket

"The good news: I thought Our Kampf was consistently hilarious. The bad news: I’m the guy who wrote Monkeybone."—Sam Hamm, screenwriter, Batman, Batman Returns, and Homecoming

December 23, 2007

Thomas Friedman's Best Column

In today's Times, Friedman wrote about Noah, the Olympics, God, apes, soft-shell turtles, floods, gibbons, imams, and gymnastics. You know, the usual.

But then a miracle happened! Friedman had a Christmas present for us all!

This is my last column until April. I will be on leave, writing a book on energy and the environment.

I hope it'll be that 4-volume series on triangulating the energy in a spherical environment embedded in a flat universe we've all been waiting for.

Just one thing, Tom. Take your time!

— Bernard Chazelle

Posted at December 23, 2007 06:48 PM


Posted by: konopelli/wgg at December 23, 2007 07:38 PM

You may only read this site if you've purchased Our Kampf from Amazon or Powell's or me

Muhahaha. I did read it with no purchase. I borrowed from a friend.

OK, that's a lie. I didn't read it yet. My bad. (Slouches off with tail between legs.)

Yes I have a tail.

Posted by: SPIIDERWEB™ at December 23, 2007 08:56 PM

That is great news.

By the time the cleverly titled tome makes its impressive debut, scabs Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert will be standing by to help The Pensive Mustachioed One peddle his third rate insights directly to the angry blogger hordes. The repartee will be so funny.

Posted by: Arvin Hill at December 23, 2007 08:57 PM

Wait--so is Tom the guy behind Time Cube (

Posted by: Kallisti at December 23, 2007 10:44 PM

maybe he will get lost and never come back!!

well, one can hope

I ordered Our Kampf - please write in it:

"John - See, I told you I could find an even more depressing book for a Christmas present than last year."

This is for next christmas - so, no rush. It's a follow- up to this year's joke.


Posted by: Susan - NC at December 23, 2007 11:09 PM

ok so it wasnt just me who screamed in delight upon reading the piece.

knowing the damn times though he will be replaced by someone far worse, and less entertaining, and probably even without a moustache

Posted by: almostinfamous at December 23, 2007 11:46 PM

Apparently no one has yet mentioned their hope that Tom's leave of absence would be at least one Friedman Unit - in other words, that there will be no columns for the next six months.

Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

Posted by: mistah charley, ph.d. at December 24, 2007 11:33 AM

April of what year? If it's 2008, don't answer this.

Posted by: catherine at December 24, 2007 12:51 PM


Posted by: Mike Meyer at December 24, 2007 07:40 PM

Isn't four months kind of a long time to acquire the necessary expertise plus write a book on energy AND the environment?
Are Stewart and Colbert crossing picket lines?

Posted by: AnonE.Mouse at December 25, 2007 11:50 AM

Hey Arvin, have you considered that they're returning to TV in order to do a really crappy job? You know, really drive home the value of professional writers, kind of trailing off halfway through a joke, that sort of whatever.

Posted by: Doctorb Science at December 26, 2007 12:24 AM

Well, Doctorb, there is zero doubt in my mind that's exactly what their M.O. will be. Their lip service to the strike will provide the necessary justification for their fans to watch and laugh and ignore the fact that what these guys are doing by returning to the air is weakening the union, period.

Where writers are involved, silence speaks volumes. The suits at Comedy Central and other other networks don't give a damn what happens as long as they can run fresh shows to support a fresh barrage of commercials. That does not help writers. It all but eliminates the sanctions which are absolutely fundamental to assuring writers to get a fair shake. Money talks and bullshit walks, and these two guys - by returning to work without a resolution - are making sure the fat cats get their money. But, then, they're fat cats themselves, so this shouldn't be surprising. It is, however, disappointing.

I long ago tired of Stewart yukking it up with any old fascist selling a book. He's an obsequious toady, and, although the material on The Daily Show (especially the correspondent segments) is good, Stewart himself is neither funny nor insightful.

Sadly, I will miss Colbert, as his humor has a caustic bite to it. But if he chooses to be a big money scab and undermine the people largely responsible for his good fortune, all I can say is see ya. I know how to hold a grudge, and will.

Posted by: Arvin Hill at December 26, 2007 10:09 AM

Friedman is David Broder who with a mustache and contacts. Like his buddies at The Economist, his job is to suck the greasy shlongs of The Elite and proclaim them delicacies. He's very good at what he does.

Posted by: Arvin Hill at December 26, 2007 10:21 AM

Actually, Stewart and Colbert are being forced by Comedy Central to go back to work. Click this petition to tell CC to cut the crap and negotiate:

Posted by: Phoenix Woman at December 26, 2007 11:23 AM

Only slaves are forced to work, everyone else has a choice. (maybe a separate contract has been cut and signed by Mr. Stewart and Mr. Colbert)

Posted by: Mike Meyer at December 26, 2007 11:46 AM

[blockquote]Only slaves are forced to work[/blockquote]

Well said.

* * * * * * * *

So, let me get this straight, Phoenix Woman: Stewart and Colbert are prepared to cross the picket line, but Comedy Central gets the petition.

That is rich.

So rich that if I had a dollar for every person who signs that petition and subsequently watches four hours of Comedy Central's scabfest each week, I could buy a pair of one-way tickets to New Zealand and put the rest in a Turks and Caicos account.

Meanwhile, Glenn Greenwald will continue generating a thousand letters each week from Democratic voters who can't understand why their political representatives betray them at every turn.

And liberal treachery remains an artificial construct of the Nader-loving spoilers responsible for George W. Bush.

There's something wrong with this picture, but I can't quite put my finger on it. Maybe it'll become more clear after the whiskey and eggnog fade.

Posted by: Arvin Hill at December 27, 2007 03:19 AM

... and, at the very least, I'll remember [i]not to use UBB code[/i].

Posted by: Arvin Hill at December 27, 2007 03:22 AM

I hear that Tommy will be recording a single "The World is Phat!"

Posted by: Tom Paine at December 30, 2007 01:02 AM