Thursday, June 26, 2008

Me of Little Faith by Lewis Black

I only purchased this book last weekend, and I had not planned to read it so soon, but with the death of George Carlin, my favorite comedian, Lewis Black has been elevated. His comedy routines and appearances on The Daily Show keep me in stitches.

This short examination of Black’s religious odyssey definitely has its moments. I read it at the airport and on the plane, and there were times I would laugh uncontrollably. Like his comedy routines, some of the jokes require long setups, and, for the most part, they are worth the effort.

His serious thoughts on religion are also worthy, though not always funny. Example:

"Each and every one of us has our own way of relating to the universe. We beseech or hosanna or meditate. Some of us feel nature is the governing principle. Some of us feel there is no governing principle.

It is what makes this country rich. It is also what undermines America. In a land that should take great joy in the differences of its people – and in the knowledge that those differences are what make us strong – we generally choose to fear diversity while wallowing in our own stupidity. For a country where so many believe in some sort of God, we seem, as a whole, to have more faith in our ignorance. We seem to find a shared comfort in our fear of those who don’t share our beliefs." (180)

A pretty serious observation for a comedian, and furthermore, his rants on religious fundamentalists and televangelists are more than worth the price of admission.

Unfortunately, a rather lame “play” Black co-wrote and co-performed with college friends, Mark Linn-Baker and William Peters, seemed to be nothing more than filler. Some seriously bad language, but he does not hit all of Carlin’s “Seven Dirty Words.” 4 stars

--Chiron, 6/26/08

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