Herblock: A Cartoonist’s Life: Self-Portrait and Views of Washington from Roosevelt to Clinton by Herbert Block
I adore Herblock. His cartoons have made me laugh out loud. Often. And still. Even some of the cartoons I’ve seen oodles of times crack me up every time.
I swear: I started smiling broadly and had to work hard to prevent the laugh-out-loud thing—probably seeming like I had some serious issues or was newly madly in love—the other day at the grocery store, when thinking about this one. It’s my most favorite.
In this book, as in his cartoons, Herblock pulls no punches. In fact, he’s pretty darn scathing about those he didn’t like (we’re looking at you, Reagan, Eisenhower, Carter). And pretty gentle toward those he thought were OK (Humphrey, Kennedy).
So, since this is the more eye-widening-with-delight stuff, here’s one sample of the harsh (yet/therefore wildly entertaining) statements:
“Since his 1974 resignation, there have been periodic Nixon rehabilitations, often advanced by magazines and TV programs that apparently found they could tap a public fascination similar to the interest in chainsaw massacres and bloodsucking bats.” (p. 234)
There’s a fair amount of political commentary here, so this book suited me just fine. But there’s also enough info about Herblock himself to qualify this puppy as an autobiography.
And, being something of a muckety-muck himself in Washington, Herblock rubbed shoulders with lots of Names. He drops them gently.
He seems like a modest sort, which is impressive given his own stature as a Name.
The other thing a person can forget is this: Herblock was smart as all hell. Cartoons seem like they’re fun and games, but his stuff really sings… and stings.
Let’s be happy: There’s Herblock stuffall over… the interwebs.