Book Reviews of The Barmaid's Brain : And Other Strange Tales From Science

The Barmaid's Brain : And Other Strange Tales From Science
The Barmaid's Brain And Other Strange Tales From Science
Author: Jay Ingram
ISBN-13: 9780716747024
ISBN-10: 0716747022
Publication Date: 11/6/2001
Pages: 288
  • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.

4.5 stars, based on 2 ratings
Publisher: W. H. Freeman
Book Type: Paperback
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reviewed The Barmaid's Brain : And Other Strange Tales From Science on
Fascinating tales from the natural world, explained in an understandable but thorough fashion.
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I've decided what I want to be when I grow up: a successful, but misunderstood comedian whose professional laughs hide a life of personal woe, and who, after a time, confuses his own persona with that of his public one. I think it'll be a fresh way to hit the comedy world, and a totally non-cliche life story to be remembered for.

Can you imagine?

A comedian who's secretly got some sadness in his life? That's like mind-blowing! Of all the funny people in the world, not a damn one of them ever had anything bad ever happen in his or her life! That's why they're in comedy! Because their lives are so damned perfect!

It'll be ironic, you know? Ironic, like worldview-shatteringly unexpected, like people always use the word 'ironic,' because people always use the word 'ironic' properly. I mean, is it genius, or what? Metaphorically speaking, it'd be like a freaking clown who's secretly crying under the grease paint. Which is freaking unheard of.

In fact, I wish somebody would do a biography of one comedian who had something kind of sad happen in his or her life, because, you know, the majority of people on this planet go through their entire lives without anything ever bad happening, and that the biographer would decide that it must have been the pain of that event (because virtually everybody else had a primrose childhood!) that drove said comedian to find solace in laughter.

What an insight that would be into the person's life. I mean, you can't just pick up any biography of any publicly funny person and just know that the whole point of the stupid book is going to be how this person had some secret pain none of us knew about for their whole life without even opening the damned thing. How different that person would be from all the freaking rest of us, who, regrettably, will never know the pain of loss or rejection or just anything fricking bad ever happening even one time.

It would be so cool if any book like that existed, and you know, maybe one day that book will exist and it'll be about me; the first book ever like that. Because, heck, they can't write that book until I live it, and I'll be the first person who ever lived a life like that. So the one about me will be the first book like that.

I mean, hypothetically, it'd make sense, right? If a person experiences A and then does B, A must have caused B. Well, statistically, of course, it's important to look at non-A people and see that they didn't do B. But we already covered that - everyone in the world, pretty much, is non-A. I bet nobody reading this has ever had anything bad happen to them in their lives. Since nobody in the world has ever experienced anything even remotely A-like, B must be a result of A. B couldn't just be a quirk of genetic makeup that made the person naturally given to B-ness.

By the way, if you get a chance, I've been reading a book called "Groucho: The Life and Times of Julius Henry Marx." You'll never guess what drove the man to a life of comedy.