"Cooking With Pooh": Joni's publishing parable for Thanksgiving

I s'pose it would be nice if I wrote a heartfelt bit about how grateful I am for all my well-blessed squab-bob-a-doo etc today, and truly, I try to follow the Biblical mandate to praise God in all things, knowing full well that God is going to give me something way better than what I've been praying for, but I gotta tell ya, I've had a cascading wall of crap kind of year, and I'm frankly not appreciating it. So I decided to offer instead a deliciously cynical industry roast, inspired by Phil Kloer of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, who recently concluded his quest to find the worst book titles ever.

The undisputed winner: Cooking With Pooh. Yes, it is an actual children's book from Disney. An eloquent comment on the industry in itself, but then...

Wait. When you think about it, Cooking With Pooh could be construed as a mandate. A call for unblinking optimism. It's about taking whatever's thrown at you and making the best of it. Writers are great at that. Bitter fight with the spouse? Milk the best lines for dialogue. Consigned to laundromat hell for two hours? Use it for character study. Migraine? Go with it, baby, you'll find some kind of story in there.

When life gives you lemons, you know what to do. And if life gives you pooh, make "yummy yummy cookie cutter treats!" or, as Sarah Silverman says, "When life gives you AIDS, make lemon-AIDS!" (CAUTION: Do not click that link unless you are incapable of being offended.)

So Happy Thanksgiving! Go forth galvanized -- slings and arrows be damned -- and cook with whatever pooh is thrown at you!


All of those book titles were hilarious. As you know, I'm a connoisseur of hilariously-inappropriate titles, so I got a kick out of these.

As for the parable, you've gathered all of the necessary ingredients: great writing, perseverance, and pure, unadulterated chutzpah. You've done the prep work, and now it's time for the universe to kick in. I'll be there cheering you on.

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