the joel stein show

my hero, the one-day memoirist

my hero, the one-day memoirist

This past Wednesday, The Huffington Post reported that Joel Stein, reporter and columnist for TIME, has written a memoir.

The catch? Besting Sarah Palin’s quickie four-month turnaround for her forthcoming autobiography, Going Rogue (excuse me while I vom — and refuse to link), Stein pumped his out in a day.

“What took her so long?” Stein muses in his column in next week’s TIME. His wisecrack that “introspection doesn’t need to be time-consuming” certainly rings true based on reading the 49-page book (downloadable here, or read it embedded via DocStoc on the Huff Post article), which he turned out with the help of ghostwriter Neil Strauss.

(Hey, if Palin gets one, the guy doing this for a lark does, too. And I bet her ghostwriter didn’t also pen an ultra successful — and sleazy — guide to picking up women.)

I won’t divulge too many details about the book, since it’s so short, but suffice it to say, it left me smiling and satisfied (that’s what…well, you know). I’ve been a fan of Stein’s for years, and fondly recall the days when he was the back-page columnist for Entertainment Weekly.

(Side note: I really miss The Joel Stein Show — and wish EW had it more thoroughly archived on their site. Google it if you want to find the actual column. Apparently people didn’t appreciate it during its time. Those people are fools.)

Reading about Stein’s mulleted misadventures will certainly take you back to your own misguided hairstylings of yore (I’m guilty of a perm circa grade one. *Shudder*), but really, it’s his self-deprecating tone that will win you over in the end. I saw much of myself in his insecurity and nebbish worries (and certainly wouldn’t sneeze at his career, writing for both Time Out New York and TIME magazines, among others).

If you enjoy wit, snark, and taking potshots at both Palin and the cliched structure of the rise-fall memoir, check out Stein’s tongue-in-cheek tome. (Can 49 pages be considered a tome? I’m saying yes.)


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