Humorist Dave Barry’s life has changed since he retired from his weekly column in 2005. In his latest book, I’ll Mature When I’m Dead — published this week –– he writes about being the father of the groom, what it’s like to get a colonoscopy and how to save the newspaper business (hint: he has no clue). He recently spoke with EW about everything from what fictional character he most identifies with to the best book to read in flight.
What book changed your life?
The Brothers Karamazov, by Dostoevsky. I was supposed to read it my freshman year in college, but it’s 18 million pages long and I could never get past the first 43. Nevertheless I wrote a paper about it, and I got an OK grade, which taught me that I could write convincingly about things I did not remotely understand. This paved the way for my career in journalism.
Which book has the best movie version?
The Godfather. I would say Animal House, but I don’t think there’s a book version of that, unless Dostoevsky wrote one.
What’s the best author to read on airplanes?
Chuck Norris. Because when you read a Chuck Norris book, the person in the next seat will not bother you.
Which fictional character do you most identify with?
James Bond, because he is licensed to kill. I am not, technically, licensed to kill, but I am licensed to make really sarcastic remarks.
What’s a classic that you’ve secretly never read?
Crime and Punishment, by Dostoevsky. Some day I am going to buy it and read the first 43 pages.
Who is the author whose next book you always look forward to the most?
Chuck Norris. I keep leaving his earlier book on the plane.