Sunday, November 16, 2008

Authors I once really enjoyed...where are they now?

Robert Fulghum - His book "All I Need Really to Know I learned in Kindergarten" almost made me jump from Catholicism to Unitarianism. I haven't read the book since 1986; I wonder what I might think of it now. He is still around and lives in Seattle and Crete. If I ever find the book in the bookshelf, I'll have to give it a shot again.

Jeff Smith, a.k.a. The Frugal Gourmet. I loved his cookbooks and his show on PBS. My friend Ray and I would just refer to it as "Frugal", as in "Did you watch Frugal today?" He passed away in 2004, after he lost his PBS gig because of multiple accusations of sexual harassment and pedophilia. He denied it, and settled out of court. I still have some of his cookbooks somewhere. I should dig them out.

Garrison Keillor - yes, I know he is still in St. Paul. I currently listen to him every weekend. However, in the 1980s, I despised him and thought he was only for old geezers to listen to on the radio. Give me my Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians, my Hoodoo Gurus, my TPOH instead of listening to that boring show out of the Twin Cities. Why would anyone go see the Prairie Home Companion there when you could go see The Replacements? However, somewhere along the way I read Lake Wobegon Days and got hooked on the tales of Norwegian bachelors, tuna hotdish and the Chatterbox Cafe. I guess, quoting a song I once liked by TPOH, that I'm an adult now. While TPOH, the Gurus and the New Bohemians are no longer making music that gets played on the radio, Keillor and his crew soldier on.

Martha Stewart - I mean the 1980s incarnation of her, not today's vintage. Back then, there was much pomp and circumstance. Very serious. Still Married to Andy Stewart. Just wrote "Entertaining". Her daughter Alexis wasn't a snotty radio host then, she was just a high schooler. Do you remember this version of her? My 20 year old self really loved her. She was so not my own mom. I loved how she wrote about growing up in Nutley, NJ and what good food should taste like. I couldn't wait for the magazine to show up in my mail box. My almost 45 year old self respects her, but I don't idolize her anymore. I haven't gotten her magazine for years, but I do get "Everyday Food" which is one of hers. And I really don't like her TV show. And after all these years, I've come to appreciate my own mom's , who could probably outgarden Martha Stewart and she doesn't even need a gardening staff to do it.


Marge said...

I have not thought of 'The Frug' in a long time! Our entire family loved watching him. Do you remember Justin Wilson? At least I think that was his name. Yummy cajun cooking!

TennZen said...

I LOVED the Frugal Gourmet! It's so funny that you mention these. I was in a used book store over the weekend and I found a bunch of Jeff Smith's cookbooks, along with Martha's original Entertaining, and a couple of Galloping Gourmet books, too! Needless to say, I grabbed 'em all.

Kathy W said...

I DO remember Martha back in the 80's. I also loved her first TV show that she did. I was a faithful viewer (even though it was on at 7:00 am or something ridiculous). I stopped getting her magazine years ago but just started back up again recently. There's something about the holidays and Martha that seem to go together for me. I love her style. I'm a big Everyday Food fan.

Anonymous said...

I haven't thought of Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians for AGES! I actually went to her concert in 1988 in Richmond, Virginia. It was a small venue (maybe 300 seats) so it was so intimate.

Thanks for the memory!

Isn't it weird that she's married to Paul Simon? I haven't listened to their album together - I may have to check it out - it came out in 2006.

Mom said...

This whole thread has inspired me - I've got some time off work later this week and I am going to finally organize my books around here. I've got to find my Fulghum and, of course Frugal. I also would love to lay my hands on my Martha Stewart Christmas book from the days of yore, Kathy. It's this one:

There's nothing like Martha for the are right.

And maybe I'll fire up the "Shooting Rubber Bands and the Stars" Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians CD I picked up a garage sale this past summer for a buck. It took me right back to graduate school when I heard it. When she married Paul Simon, the music stopped. I can't believe she did it, but they're still married and thats, as Martha would say, a good thing.