Each week, we settle in to read the ramblings of the maniacal Gene Weingarten. The Pulitzer Prize winning “humorist” from WaPo gave us a doozy of a column last week with his “New Laws of Writing.” While he promised to deliver more of those laws, he didn’t do it this week. Instead, he brings us a riveting interview. It is a rare treat to have Gene do an interview. Usually, his column is filled with fart jokes and recycled comedy bits.
What newsmaker could be SO fascinating that Gene spent his entire column interviewing?
If you guessed Jay Lynch, the main joke writer for “Bazooka Joe” comics, you win! (Winning being a highly subjective term.)
To read this interview is to get a peek into the psyche of Weingarten. I don’t remember Bazooka Joe, but my great-great-great-great-great grandfather tells me that it was a comic book on bubble gum that was renowned for telling stale, unfunny jokes.
If you don’t believe me, just ask Jay himself. He tells Gene that most of the jokes were “very old jokes.” Gene hilariously tried to follow up by asking, if that style was “kind of lazy.” Lynch defends his bad writing by admitting, “Sure. But there were only 50 jokes in a series, so I kind of had the idea if a joke was forgettable enough, when the kid gets to the joke the second time, it would seem new.“
The whole interview just seems to celebrate the overall mediocrity and laziness of the Bazooka Joe writers. NOW I understand why Gene likes it so much! He found his kindred spirit.