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Leave 'em laughing. That's the classic credo of the funnyman. And that's just what Georgia's favorite son -- and one of America's best-loved humorists -- has done right here. Whether he's taking pointed potshots at blood-stealing orderlies, guffawing in the face of mortality, or talking poignantly about family, friends, and lovers, Lewis Grizzard makes his exit with neither a bang nor a whimper, but a poke in the ribs, a slap on the back, and a promise that his irresistible sense of humor and humanity will always keep on tickin'.
"Imagine Andy Rooney with a Georgia accent . . . and a sense of humor." -- The Houston Post
"A natural-born storyteller with a deft hand for reducing everyday occurrences into uproarious nuggets of prose." -- The Orlando Sentinel
From the Paperback edition.
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The popular Dixie wisecracker is back this year--not with his usual mixed bag of grumpy newspaper columns but, along with fervent thanks for continued life, a complete account of his latest and scariest illness. Grizzard (b. 1946) lay hospitalized for 27 days in a coma, near death, after major rearranging of his vital giblets. Out of his coma with no apparent brain damage, he reports on how he got into such a parlous state; how he barely survived; and how much his pals and fans love him. This a personal story with a vengeance. We've heard about Grizzard's faulty ticker before, of course, but not since Prof. Irving S. Cobb perfected the genre several generations ago have there been such sustained carryings-on about tubes and catheters, blood and guts. Advancing the art, Grizzard fearlessly discusses his testicles (his privates peek out from those hospital gowns), his dreams, his golf-club memberships, and his hemorrhoids. He mentions ``limbaughsectomies (putting good sense into the head of a liberal)''; provides a joke about spinsters; and offers a song about absent friends. For his devoted fans, it's pure Gizzard--inside and out, heart and soul--slick and sometimes funny. It's easy reading, as usual, and it flows like healthy body fluids. Reminiscent of Cobb's account of a drawing of a party ``whose stomach was sliced four ways, like a twenty-cent pie, and then folded back neatly, thus exposing his entire interior arrangement to the gaze of the casual observer.'' No illustrations, praise the Lord. (First printing of 150,000) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Booklist:
The problem with being a cranky humorist is that sometimes the bile overwhelms the humor. Perhaps hanging out at death's door after heart surgery from hell has mellowed Grizzard. No doubt he's always been funnier writing about himself than about folks who aren't white, male, heterosexual southerners. It surely helps that he's in love--with "Dedra Kyle Tiramani, former homecoming queen from Cleveland, Tennessee." And Grizzard unquestionably seems like a kinder, gentler grump compared to that current avatar of mean-spirited conservatism, Rush Limbaugh (see below). At any rate, Grizzard has a dramatic, fascinating story to tell here, centering on his near-fatal open-heart surgery in March 1993, but full of the side trips--to still-Soviet Russia, to multifarious football games and golf courses, and into a southern boy's childhood and a southern man's comatose dreams--for which the widely syndicated Atlanta Journal-Constitution columnist is known. I Took a Lickin' may not cure the attitudinal diseases it targets--"optical rectitis . . . [and] constipation of the personality"--but it should provide temporary relief of symptoms for most of its readers. Expect passels of requests. Mary Carroll
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Book Description Ballantine Books, 1997. Paperback. Condition: Used: Good. Seller Inventory # SONG034541926X