My girlfriend took me to the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture up in Harlem. She thought I would enjoy Baratunde Thurston in conversation with comedian Elon James White for the release of Baratunde’s new book “How To Be Black.”
Baratunde is the digital editor of The Onion, a hilarious satirical newspaper online and offline.
“It’s funny and smart. This speaking event is perfect for nerds like us!” My friend said excitedly. Well she was right. I enjoyed it.
The best part is, I stepped to the mic to ask Baratunde to advise me on how to explain to other black people what it means when I as a sister.. listen to copious amounts of Garrison Keillor, a senior citizen, vaudeville radio satirist from Minnesota whose show A Prairie Home Companion is constantly in rotation at my house.
To my surprise, Baratunde is also a big huge PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION fan.
“No explanation necessary,” he said “your black friends should accept you for who you are..”
I bought the hardcover version of How To Be Black and waited to get it signed after the talk was over. When it was my turn, I said
”Just write: Chevy is awesome…”
He did write that. But as you can see in the photo attached to this post, he also wrote something along the lines of:
“…never tell an author what to write” in your book
Once a satirist always a satirist! Thank you Baratunde. I am enjoying the book!