My Custom Van

Michael Ian Black, best known for his frequent (constant?) appearances on I Love the ’80s, now makes his first foray into, ahem, literature with his humorous essay collection My Custom Van (Simon Spotlight, $23.95). A foreword by Abraham Lincoln, check. Threatening letters to squirrels, check. Short bits of (not very) erotic fiction, check. Familiar also from cable-cult favorites Stella and Reno! 911, Black’s sense of humor is eccentric, to say the least, but that’s really what makes it easy to enjoy. It might not always be roll-on-the-floor funny, but it generally comes from a fresh direction. In his own words, Black aims to be “ridicufuckinglous.” If you want a little foretaste of his reading tonight, check out his blog (, where he’s announced a feud with David Sedaris. Trust me, you’ll want to know what a “whizzing Octosnatch” is before you see the random funnyman in person. Third Place Books, 17171 Bothell Way N.E., 366-3333, Free. 6 p.m. NICK FELDMAN

Tue., July 22, 6 p.m., 2008

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