May 29, 2008

Hobo Matters

To apologize for my absence I bring you this audio essay on the role of Hobos in the Great Depression from John Hodgman's Areas of My Expertise. The visuals aren't good for much, other than pointing out that the only way John Hodgman could be funnier is if a PBS documentary gave him the veneer of boring credibility as counterpoint to his deadpan absurdity. People forget the other than the bit about "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself" the rest of FDR's 1933 inauguration speech is pretty inspirational, particularly this passage:

"The people of the United States have not failed. In their need they have registered a mandate that they want direct, vigorous action. And so I will kill all the hobos, and together we will knaw on their bones." It was time for a comprehensive hobo eradication program the president called "a new deal."
No wonder he's on the dime.


Jere said...

oh my lord i can't watch anymore, i need a break...only made it through a minute and a half...too many tears of laughter..

(Ryan) said...

I know right? I read his book last year but after hearing this I need to download his audiobook...that delivery is absolutely perfect.

Jere said...

Yeah. I just was watching Conan and they brought him up, referring to him as "the PC guy in the Mac commercals." I mean, it's his fault for doing them and therefore being seen by many as JUST that guy, but still, it's a shame with all the funny stuff he does, he is known mainly as "PC guy."

(Ryan) said...

I just saw that too! It was pretty strange that Conan wouldn't know who John Hodgman was.

Incidently, on those Mac/PC ads, there was a really good story he told on This American Life about becoming famous all of a sudden. It was even sort of moving. They have all the episodes over on their website.