Some Books I Have Written / Contributed To:

The Best American Essays 2010 (Mariner Books, September 2010)

An essay I wrote for Slate.com about my brain tumor and ensuing surgery was selected as a “Notable Essay” for this, the 25th anniversary of the esteemed non-fiction collection. The volume was edited by Christopher Hitchens. It was an honor to be included in this edition, especially given the state of Hitchens’ health. I am grateful that they let a schlub like me sully the otherwise pristine pages.

The Reluctant Metrosexual: Dispatches from an Almost Hip Life By Peter Hyman (Villard, August 2004)

Written during the early part of the millennium, my first book was, like the works of Hemingway and Melville, printed on paper (except for the parts available digitally and via audio CD). A collection of humor essays, the book is also (purportedly) an examination of what it means to be a man in this day and age. Mostly, however, it is noteworthy for its excellent use of punctuation, and the elegant readability of the font (Walbaum). I am proud of the work, and several lovely critics were kind enough to compare his writing style to David Sedaris and P.J. O’Rourke, among other notable authors.

Bar Mitzvah Disco: The Music May Have Stopped But the Party’s Never Over (Crown, November 2005)

For this hilarious examination of Bar Mitzvah culture of the 1970s and 1980s, I contributed a humor essay entitled “Confessions of a Waspy Jew: The Bar Mitzvah Years.” The book features a trove of photographic footage of this ancient rite of passage, alongside essays on this most sacred and embarrassing of Semitic experiences.

Class Dismissed: 75 Amazing, Mind-Expanding College Exploits (Villard, July 2006)

I contributed a humor essay for this anthology of college stories, published by Random House. My essay recalls a date gone awry with an intelligent comparative lit major who, at the end of our evening, proclaimed that I “wasn’t going to talk her into bed.” Was this my intention?  Did this experience define my entire collegiate existence? And how sorry was the state of culture in the late 1980s the college men had to rely on the saccharine sounds of George Michael to woo women? Read the book and find out.

rejected cover

Rejected: Tales of the Failed, Dumped and Canceled (Villard, July 2009)

For this collection, based on Jon Friedman’s live show of the same name, I contributed a piece that explored an email I received.  The email was a long rant telling me I was the “most obnoxious person alive.”  The author of the email had read a New York magazine story I’d written, and it had offended him to the core of his soul. So I put together a PowerPoint presentation that addressed the young man’s concerns.