East Georgia State College
Roy Blount, Jr. Featured at EGSC
Kicking off the 2014 Vision Series at East Georgia State College will be Southern writer and humorist, Roy Blount, Jr. Scheduled for Tuesday, February 4, at 11 a.m. in the Luck Flanders Gambrell Center Auditorium, the presentation is sponsored by the EGSC Vision Series, a privately funded initiative that seeks to bring programs of cultural and intellectual enrichment to East Georgia State College and its constituency, the presentation is free and open to the community.
Roy Blount, Jr. is one of those rare writers whose actual voice has become almost as familiar as his literary one. Most weekends, you can hear his signature blend of Georgia drawl and rapid fire wit on the NPR news quiz “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me.” He periodically recites comical poetry and inflicts musical screeching (as founder of the fictional “Society for the Singing Impaired”) on Garrison Keillor’s “A Prairie Home Companion.” The Vanderbilt graduate has performed a successful off-Broadway one-man-show, appeared on several network TV shows, and stays busy on the college lecture circuit.
Despite all this talking, Blount has somehow managed to sit down and write 21 books, in a literary voice that, as Michael Dirda recently wrote in the Washington Post, “neatly balances real learning with easy-loping charm.” His penchant for pithy puns, political petards and periodic alliterative passages produces sentences that pull chuckles from readers; he piles these into paragraphs and punch lines that can make them positively puncture a gut. With such a facility for wordplay, it is no wonder that one of Blount’s many side gigs is serving as a usage adviser to The American Heritage Dictionary. Evidently unsatisfied with merely providing guidance to the dictionary, he has now written one of his own, Alphabet Juice: The Energies, Gists, and Spirits of Letters, Words, and Combinations Thereof; Their Roots, Bones, Innards, Piths, Pips, and Secret Parts, ... With Examples of Their Usage Foul and Savory, recently released in paper by Farrar, Strauss and Giroux. The book explores the provenance of an eclectic variety of words in short, invariably funny essays that average about a page or two long.