A series of random, lighthearted anecdotes from a professional economist and family man.
The book consists of 78 entries from Carrick’s personal blog, tackling everything from family life, to being Canadian, to general observations about the world’s eccentricities. Though the author definitely has writing chops and an easygoing, likable style, his subject matter may interest only a very limited northern audience. Chapters such as â€œThe Curious Meanings of Some Canadian Place Names” and â€œReasons to Want to be Governor of the Bank of Canada” will solely be humorous to a Canadian reader. A remark like, â€œQuÃ©bec is Up, Ontario is Down and the Prairies are Flat” may be amusing to the author, but many will be left out of the joke. Some chapters are no more than retellings of mundane conversations with a schtick spin, as in â€œMy Wife and I Argue Over a Plant.” Readers will be left feeling that â€œyou had to be there” to get the humor. Other entries are simply dated–the chapter â€œOnly One, the Governor of New York,” about Eliot Spitzer’s woes, might have been funny when it was originally published in March 2008 but it’s now a stale bit. When Carrick does attempt fiction, such as in â€œThe Best Valentine’s Day Present Ever,” with its anagram punch line, or â€œSpartacus the Kite”–in which the author imagines himself in the titular role–his efforts fall flat. The book works better when he takes on more universal ideas, such as â€œWhich Letter of the Alphabet is the Funniest?,” which only requires that the reader speak English and not be familiar with, say, the obscure habits of Canadian bachelors (see the chapter titled â€œCanadian Male Pick-up Lines.”) Certainly Northerners who know the author personally will thoroughly enjoy â€œTwo Scoops” Is Just Right, but for the rest of us it’s not nearly enough.
A blog by any other name is still a blog.