Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Six to Eight Black Men

I was introduced to David Sedaris' essay "Six to Eight Black Men" when my friend Laura sent me a copy of Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim with a note saying "if nothing else, read 6 to 8 Black Men." I did, and I laughed so hard (in public) that I literally couldn't stop laughing for a while. Since then I've given countless copies of the volume entitled Holidays on Ice to people who tell me they haven't yet read this wonderful essay.

My son always wants me to recite a paragraph when I say goodnight to him on Christmas Eve: "Listen, you might want to pack a few of your things together before you go to bed. The former bishop of Turkey will be coming along with six to eight black men. They might put some candy in your shoes, they might stuff you in a sack and take you to Spain, or they might just pretend to kick you. We don't know for sure, but we want you to be prepared."

So if you haven't read it yet, click on over to Esquire Magazine, where they have a version of it you can read right now!


Harriet said...

I just read the story and I must confess that it is the first and only Sedaris story I have ever read. I'm not sure why. I think it's that there's been a little too much hype about him. Too many people like to read his books. It makes me nervous. But I think I will need to track down some of them.

Alison said...

Thanks for the link! I've been meaning to track this down since the first time you mentioned it, but never got around to it.

Betty (Beth) said...

Awesome story. Thanks for posting the link to it. :-)

Hope your holiday season goes great!


Lori L said...

I did exactly the same thing when reading this story. Really. I almost wet myself I was laughing so hard. NPR's All Things Considered featured several of his stories on Saturday. In some ways they are even funnier when listening to them.

readersguide said...

Strangely, a cabdriver in Finland informed us that Santa Claus is Finnish. We asked him how he knew and he said Finns know this because he speaks Finnish. But he is quite clever and speaks English as well. So -- there's that.

Jeanne said...

Lori, You're absolutely right; we like listening to him read his stuff even more than we like reading it. Walker read "Six to Eight Black Men" out loud to us and his grandparents on Christmas Eve, and he included many of the pauses and the emphases from our book on tape version, read by Sedaris himself.