Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Night I Placed My Book Into Jon Stewart's Hands

Throughout the process of writing my book (http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/bush-ii-book-i/6254252) I had constantly thought that the one person in this world who would most enjoy it would be Jon Stewart. I daydreamed about him holding a copy of it.

On September 27, 2010, I made that daydream a reality.

The Daily Show recently launched their new book (http://www.amazon.com/Daily-Show-Stewart-Presents-Earth/dp/044657922X) and would be having a book reading and signing by the 18 writers in Barnes & Noble Union Square. It was called for 8:00 PM.

After I got off work at 4:00 PM, I quickly zoomed to the library to drop off some books (http://tinyurl.com/2cchw8e, http://tinyurl.com/23ruo29) and pick up some new ones (http://tinyurl.com/29o7kt6, http://tinyurl.com/29yh3u3), then quickly zoomed to KD to pick up some dinner, then quickly zoomed to the Bryant Park sukkah to eat that dinner, then quickly (this sounds like the Kohen Gadol Yom Kippur avodah, doesn't it?) zoomed to Union Square, picked up Jon's book, plopped myself down in a seat at 5:45 PM and read a great book (http://tinyurl.com/2ecytkj) for two hours until Jon arrived. Good thing I did that because 15 minutes after I sat down, all the seats were gone.

The book reading was vastly entertaining, and the Q&A session even more so. One of the questions from an audience member was how one could get to be a writer on the show. Jon replied that interested writers received "submission packets" wherein an applicant would create funny headlines and stories and the staff would decide if the material passed muster (The Onion has the same process; The Knish has higher standards).

Ooh, I could use that when I approached Jon for the book signing. When the Q&A was over, I signed my book for Jon and queued up. I noticed that the bodyguard in front of Jon was the same hardcase at The Daily Show studio (my wife I attended a taping previously), and the Barnes & Noble staff cautioned that the writers would be signing only their book and nothing else. I decided to keep my book out in the open, arousing less suspicion than surreptitious tucking, perhaps.

It worked. The bodyguard eyeballed me as I approached, but it was do or die. As my copy of Jon's book made its way to him, I placed my book into his hands, and offered my well-rehearsed nerve-jangled flop-sweat sales-pitch:

Me: “Hello Jon.”
Jon: “Hey, howaya?”
Me: “I’m good, thank you. This is a gift from me and is also my submission packet.”
Jon: (leafs through book) "Oh!”
Me: “I think that of all credible American journalists, you would enjoy this most.”
Jon: (still leafing) “Oooooh, heyyy, interesting!”
Me: “Please feel free to read at your leisure.”
Jon: (leafing still) “I'll definitely have a look at it.”
Me: “Just trying to make my way in this world, thank you.”
Jon: “No problem.”

Dream fulfilled! I floated away from the signing table on a cloud of happiness, looking behind me and noticing that the writer next to him, Josh Lieb, an author of his own book (http://tinyurl.com/27gfdtf) was espying mine.

Now if Jon Stewart would be the person who would enjoy my book the most, who possibly could enjoy it even more?

Stephen Colbert, that's who.

I'll keep you updated.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

My NYC Marathon 18 Mile Tune Up PR

This morning I absolutely clobberdemolishnihilatedestroyed my previous 18 Mile Tuneup record (set in 2002! I'm not an old man yet! Not yet!) by 10:40!!! 10:40!!!

I was faster per mile by 36 full seconds!!!

My time was 2:40:05!!!

How fast was I?

So fast, that I kept the first seven miles all under 8:08! So fast, that I kept the first 12 miles all under 8:43!

So fast, that the lead runner didn't pass me until mile 12 (he usually passes me at mile 9).

So fast, that my laces couldn't tolerate the headwind and busted open! (well, no, not really, I didn't tie them properly and lost 30 seconds!)

So fast, that I finished 7 miles in 1 hour for the first time EVER in a race!

So fast, that I finished 14 miles 2 hours for the first time EVER in a race!

So fast, that it felt like there were a hundred water stops because I kept getting to them so quickly!

So fast, that I reached the half marathon point in 1:51:30, 6 minutes faster than the Bronx 1/2, but several minutes slower than the time I'll put in at the S.I. 1/2, which I'm now REALLY excited about! I'm closing in on being in the best shape of my life. I've got 10 more years of PRs left in me. I am PUMPED!