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September 29, 2008

Ball More

So I spent Saturday at the Baltimore Book Festival, which is, as described, a book festival in Baltimore. They invited me to come and read from my book, which was very flattering. Ordinarily this would be great except for the fact that it was an outdoor festival and it was pouring the entire time I was there. Rain and outdoor book browsing do not go well together. As a result, what should have been a mob scene of bibliophiles was a smattering of homeless people sheltering in festival tents. One bright spot - when I was fifteen I had my first girlfriend. For the sake of her anonymity, I will call her Kim (which was her name, but I won't say her last name to protect her identity, but it was Lorah). Anyway, Kim and I used to do what teenagers do: make out in her basement. To cover the banana noises coming from our mouths we used to turn on the television, and for some reason, the show that always seemed to be on during our macking sessions was a cooking show hosted by a congenial Asian man called "Yan Can Cook." If her parents ever wondered why we spent so much time watching an Asian cooking show they never asked. Anyway, as I'm entering the little townhouse where authors get their credentials, who do I run into but Martin Yan, he of "Yan Can Cook." Even better, he's wearing a chef's outfit! He's unmistakably himself. Of course I want to tell him that his show accompanied my first forays to second base, but I thought that would have been inappropriate so instead I just said, "Get the hell out of my way," which was probably even worse. I immediately wrote an email to Kim telling her about my run-in, hoping that she would remember: a.) Me and b.) "Yan Can Cook." To her credit, she remembered both, which I thought was terrific.

The reading itself was pretty good. They had me in the "Literary Salon," which was a fancy way of saying the "Muddy Tent." Or really, "One of the Muddy Tents" because there were several. I noticed that the inspirational speaker TD Jakes had his reading in a big museum auditorium, and I would be willing to be dollars to doughnuts that he wasn't nearly as funny as me, or if he was, I can pretty much guarantee he didn't use the phrase "and then I came on her tits" even once during his talk, as I did. To Baltimore's credit, they really showed up for me. Despite the rain and the mud and the fact that according to my favorite television show, "The Wire," Baltimore is a more dangerous place to Chernobyl, the city's population of hipsters and attractive teenage girls showed up to my reading. I was very pleased and I hope I did a good job for them. Unfortunately, there were a couple children in the audience, which made it awkward when I used the aforementioned phrase involving semen and boobs. I checked with the girl's mother before I said it about whether or not it would okay if I said something "filthy." The mother didn't seem to care, which at the time made me think, "What a cool mother," but in retrospect makes me think "What a terrible mother."


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Did you really ask the mom if it was okay? That's very cool of you. I wish Gaffigan would have warned me about the filth in his show before I attended!
Yan Can Cook is way better to make out to than The Frugal Gourmet.


Michael Ian Black is...Fuzzy Dunlop?


Wow, Reptar left a comment that wasn't 3 paragraphs long.


What? How did I not know about this?! :( I live in Baltimore. Though I am neither a hipster or an attractive teenage girl, I would have braved the rain to see you.


Wow, Amber comments like a pretty big cunt. Looks like she passed her cliteracy exams.


Thanks for coming to Baltimore. It was a damn good reading and I laughed a lot. Definitely worth the rain and mud.


Hi Michael! This is Robin (the guy who lent you a copy of your book). Thanks for the dollar!

I just wanted to say that your reading was really excellent and everyone that I was with had a great time. I also wanted to apologize for bringing a copy of Michael Showalter's CD for you to sign. I was only joking (but it might not have been very funny to you). Also, thanks for taking some awesome photos with us.

I agree with Emily, your show was mondo worth the rain and mud.


well that's nice that you essentially had a good time. :)


I hope you didn't spend any time in the Pit or the Towers. The game's out there, and it's play or get played.

^I just finished watching season 1 of The Wire


Haha! Banana noises. I will never get tired of that description.

Books + Water. Now, those just do not go. Did you also attend a Baptist Porn festival while you were there, or a Kiddie Wine tasting? Haha, no? Well, I am glad you enjoyed your rainy outdoor book festival Michael. I hope Yan stirred you up some fried bananas and filet o' unicorn -- yum :)


You should have gone up to him and said "if Yan can cook, so can you!"

That was his tag line, remember. I saw him doing a promo thing at a mall or a food show recently.

I still can't cook. So he is a liar, btw.

That Mother

Hey pal, I was that mother! I used to think your comedy and books and whatnot were the shit, and now i think that they are shit on toast. How dare you question my parenting skills!? I just knew that my child was too young to even comprehend what you were saying, and now you call me out for it. How dare you you fucking cunt.


Hey, That Mother, get over it. You shouldn't have brought a kid and you shouldn't be indignant now for getting called out on it. Whether you thought your kid was too young to comprehend anything or not, it wasn't cool of you to put Black in the position of "Uh-oh, should I censor myself now or not?" while he is attempting to entertain the people that came to see him. I am always surprised at what some parents think their kid "doesn't notice or understand". At the very least, you should accept responsibility that you might have been wrong. But from your letter you seem like a sweet gal. Lucky kid.


thats right!!! poor black is the victim here, not you and your baby. how could you put that poor man in the position of having to think about what he says before he says it or give a shit about his audience?!!!

besides you should be scarring your kid like a normal mother does -- by ignoring her completely! don't make black do your dirty work for you. lazy bitch!!!

Larry Leonardo


its asking for kyles password and shit wtf


Please block/delete the comments of this guy if at all possible. Ugh.

That Mother

Fuck you whores who question my parenting skills!


I loved Yan Can Cook! First cooking show I ever watched on purpose. Man, if I remember right, that guy can dismember a chicken in like 6 seconds, right? Pakopakopakopako!

Never got any play while watching it, though.


Does your wife ever get tired of you hashing and rehashing stories about your inane teenage romantic encounters? I mean I'D like to see you move on, and I'm not even married to you. Have your wife call me if she'd like to vent.


That Mother smacks of Leonardo or some other equally adroit and savvy young person. I know few ladies, much less mothers, who liberally throw around cunt bombs. That's a dude move.

My warning to you: don't get sucked in to that tomfoolery.

I doubt Michael really cares anyway about kids in the audience. They're your kids. You deal with it. If the kids don't like it and start crying or bleeding out the ears, I'm sure he'd just waterboard them or stick them in a box, like any good parent would.


You're probably right, Jaime , but I wouldn't use the word "savvy" unless it was written with lotsa sarcasm.

Some lady brought her 8/9yr old boy to see the Michaels in KS. Remember that, Michael? What an awkward position.


I think we'd have a lot less war if we had cunt bombs. Just sayin'.

Michael, why do I keep getting this popup window that's asking for a password and saying "the site says kyle". Is it like some weird Simon Says game? Am I supposed to say it back?


I don't know, Bella, I think you might be alone on that. Michael's stories are funny. What's the big deal about reminiscing about old girlfriends and such?

And why is everyone in such a foul mood on here lately? It is interesting to see the comments from a group of people that seem to all like Michael so very much but probably couldn't be in the same room together without scratching each other's eyes out the first half hour.


Glad you enjoyed your visit to Baltimore!

I was (hopefully) one of the attractive teenage girls you mentioned--I was one of the annoyingly large group that came with Robin (the guy whose book you borrowed) and sat in the front row. I was the one in the trenchcoat.

You were hilarious, and I bet that little Sophie (Sophia?) will thank you someday. :)

Stranger in a strange land

Bella, allow me. It's what people do after, say, 30.

In our country we call it "reminiscing".

(Reminiscing: –verb (used without object), -nisced, -nisc·ing. to recall past experiences, events, etc.; indulge in reminiscence).

One day, long after your Clearsil has dried up, you'll, like, OMG! TOTALLY get it! (For serious!)

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