Dave Barry Turns 50 (Dave Barry) - Random House/Ballantine - 1998 - 219 pages

Dave Barry and I were both born in 1947 and both graduated from college in 1969.  We both experienced the nostalgic 1950s and the turbulent 1960s.  Our experiences were much the same except that his occurred in Armonk, New York and mine in Southern California.  He is the funniest man on planet Earth.  I have all of his books but this is the best one.  For some reason, probably related to family and career obligations, I had missed this book when it was released in 1998.  However, I now have more time to appreciate his work.

Dave spends the first 156 pages reflecting on the events of the years from 1947 to 1974 and how he reacted to them.  There were good times and bad times and you could never go wrong by using "Buffalo Bob" as a non sequitur.  If you are a fellow Boomer, you will enjoy his dance through those eventful "Formative" years.  Dave concludes that 1974 and Bob Dylan "had pretty much finished a-changin'" by then.  The book then veers off into Dave's philosophical musings about human existence including "25 Things I Have Learned in 50 Years" (#20 - "You should not confuse your career with your life" ... etc.).  If you missed this book as I did, find a copy and read it.  It is just as relevant today as it was in 1998 and there are no references at all to Al Qaeda or the presidency of George W. Bush. [JAM 6/23/2010]