“Gleefully wacky and irreverent.”

–The New York Times

“Line by line, Mr. Rudnick may be the funniest writer for the stage in the United States today.”

–The New York Times

“Deeply funny musings and adventures elevate Paul Rudnick to the highest level of American comedy writing.”

–Steve Martin

“One of the funniest quip-meisters on the planet.”

–The New York Times

“Paul Rudnick is a champion of truth (and love and great wicked humor) whom we ignore at our peril.”

–David Sedaris

“Quips fall with the regularity of the autumn leaves.”

–Associated Press

March 7, 2014

Don’t Be A Don’t

Glamour magazine has had a regular feature called Dos and Don’ts. It has sometimes included photos of regular people who’ve committed a heinous fashion crime, like wearing nude tights
with their kilt, or chunky boots with their hot pants. The offender’s eyes are always covered
with a black bar, and I’ve always wondered if these criminals ever recognize themselves and
live in shame. Glamour has also published many celebrity Don’ts:




As a longtime magazine addict, my other favorite features have included Can This Marriage Be Saved? in the Ladies Home Journal. Each month a couple, listed as, say, Jane and Mike
W., would receive marriage counseling. In the early years the
couples just needed to communicate, or Mike needed to stop criticizing Jane’s casseroles.
But as the magazine moved into the modern age, Mike began drinking heavily and becoming verbally abusive, because he felt threatened by Jane’s career. In most cases, the marriages
were saved, but on rare occasions, a divorce would occur. Some of my favorite topics have

“He’s Turned His Back on God!”

“His Elderly Parents Are Too Demanding!”

“I Wasn’t Excited About Our New Baby”

and the classic “My Husband Is a Tightwad!”


There was also a magazine titled Calling All Girls! which had a feature called Was My Face
Red! Readers would send in their most embarrassing stories, which included:

“Getting my charm bracelet caught in the strings of my violin!”

“Telling my Mom that I’d put money in the parking meter, and
then putting a dime in the wrong meter!”

“I drank from the finger bowl!”

But my all-time favorite column appeared in the earliest version
of Details magazine, and it was called Knifestyles of the Rich
and Famous. Each month, someone would minutely describe their
plastic surgery procedure. This was riveting. I especially
remember a woman who described getting buttock implants. She’d
always felt terrible because once, pre-implants, she’d walked
past a jazz musician and he’d murmured, “Flats fixed here!”