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Dave Barry Is Not Making This Up

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  4,701 ratings  ·  151 reviews
You can't make this stuff up! Dave Barry would never lie--and here are the real life, laugh-out-loud stories from across America to prove it: a U.S. Supreme Court justice shares his remedy for preventing gas ("I had not realized that this was a matter of concern in the highest levels of government"); a newspaper headline in Ohio announces the combustibility of strawberry P ...more
Paperback, 244 pages
Published February 27th 2001 by Ballantine Books (first published 1994)
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3.98  · 
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 ·  4,701 ratings  ·  151 reviews

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This was a couple of dozen of his columns which I've always loved. The perfect length as my sense of humor tends to trip out after a while. I was cutting up a tree that ice storm took partially down in the horses' field while listening to this, so I had to take a few breaks when things got dicey.

(Lots of energy & twisting left in that big, old hackberry. I wish the wood was prettier as it was 16" in diameter & should make some nice bowls, but I'll have to stain them or something. I don'
James Hold
Dec 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Dave Berry USED TO BE very funny. His first three book collections were hilarious. Then something happened. The more popular he got the less funny he became. His book on Washington politics is unreadable. This is one of the STILL FUNNY ones.
May 16, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I grew up reading Dave Barry's column right after reading the Garfield comic. I love Dave Barry. Some of his columns were so funny, others....well not so much. This collection of his essays/columns falls into the 'not so much', category. It kills me to say that, but this was not the laugh-out-loud stuff I love from him. So 3 stars because I think he is incredibly clever with his material.
Bethany White
Sep 20, 2010 rated it liked it
Would I Lie To You?
Dave Barry tells it like it is…kind of.

Dave Barry
Dave Barry Is Not Making This Up
Ballantine Books, 1994

Dave Barry draws from his experience as a Pulitzer Prize-winning humorist and extracts the humor from everyday life. He counts on his readers to assist him in gathering any news or events of great importance: UFO sightings, Elvis giving tours of Graceland, and high-top sneakers with air pumps. One can’t forget the invention of Beano, either. Although presumably silly, each o
Jenny Jo Weir
Hilarious!!! Laugh out loud, belly laughing fun. If your looking for a lighthearted short book to entertain you and put you in a good mood then look no further.
May 08, 2010 rated it liked it
I came away from this book more convinced than ever that with DB, it's simply a matter of "the shorter the funnier". The REALLY LONG chapters (Elvis fans, and Trip to China, for example) = major snooze fest. The Lawn Rangers bit, also pretty nap-worthy. However I think I just should've put it down and come back to it a few more times rather than just go hell for leather and knock the whole thing off in one go. Because his formula can get boring if you don't take it in short, clean breaks.

In my
Jan 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Incredibly funny—Dave Barry is Not Making This Up—Dave Barry is the sort of person you’d love to sit close enough to eavesdrop on at a dinner party, but not close enough that you’d end up being in one of his stories. I particularly enjoyed invasion of the money snatchers: a story of a bunch of old guys trying to do the right thing by declaring income from a lottery win and ending up being sued by the government for money well in excess of what was won. The chapters are different 2-4 page article ...more
Aug 05, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
Not very long, maybe 2 hours, I listened to it a few times during the three weeks I had it from the library, usually while falling asleep. I wonder if I had an abridged version. The choice of reader, someone who sounded like an old Jewish man, may have seemed appropriate for Florida but struck me as a little weird, especially with the author actually reading some things. You can't really go wrong with Dave Barry, but the choice of stories other than personal ones didn't really stick with me. The ...more
Jason Axley
Aug 29, 2011 rated it it was ok
I remembered Dave Barry as being more funny (lol funny) recalling when I read him as a kid. But I also recall thinking that comics were amusing as well. He is a good writer but sad to say I cannot avoid comparing him to David Sedaris. I was looking for that funny-but-more-than-a-clever-chuckle kind. My wife and I would crack up at David Sedaris. But alas, Barry's stories were fairly interesting but more clever and amusing than really funny that I was looking for.
Ed Dodson
Nov 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dave Barry is my favorite humorist. I have read 2 of his books and been fortunate enough to hear him speak. This collection of his colums is great. Just right to read one per night to reboot the brain. I especially liked the one about helping his son do a science fair project. I recommend this book, and plan to move on the next.
Aug 05, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook, comedy
This was a rather average read. There were some absolutely laugh-out-loud parts, but by and large, he was only mildly amusing, and, during his longer essays, completely boring. I skipped tracks for his longer articles because he completely loses his humour in them. But, then there were parts where my guffaws filled every space in my car. Overall, a mediocre read.
Feb 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: humor
I have this one on my nightstand for nights when I am too worried to go to sleep. The short essays in the book are perfect for giving me something to read to make me laugh and relax me. Yet they are not the long story that will keep me reading until the wee hours of the morning. I have read this so many times I practically have it memorized. Love it.
Sep 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Ah, Dave Barry, I'm sad you're not writing columns anymore. But this is the next best thing...
Hilarious as always, but a surprise sneaky tear-jerker column hidden in there.

#9 in the read-through-the-bookshelf challenge.
Dec 30, 2013 rated it it was ok
Although the situations were humorous, I was not laughing out loud like I expected to be.
Sep 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sometimes it's just good to read a silly frivolous book for laughter in between all the serious books.
Sep 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
This book is a collection of Dave Barry's best and funniest columns. They range from hilarious to quite serious and cover every subject imaginable.[return][return]He talks about a science fair project with ants for his son's school, snakes and other animals coming out of toilets, loud passengers on airplanes, pop-tarts blowing up toasters and setting houses on fire, boating trips to Bimini, UFOs in Florida, circumcision, Zebra mussels in bras, burglar alarms, criminals in New York, worst songs a ...more
Apr 29, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is a collection of Dave's columns based around real-life things and events. Naturally it's largely humour, but has a few serious moments--an exploration of the Elvis phenomenon, a visit to Hong Kong before its reversion to China's rule, and Dave's twelve-year-old son being hit by a car.

I was interested to find that this somewhat tied into the last book (The Mothman Prophecies)--one article was about a rash of UFO sightings in Florida, with some direct quotes from some of John Keel's bo
Ash Ryan
Jun 11, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: humor
In addition to following up 1992's "Dave Barry Talks Back" with a collection of his weekly humor columns from the Miami Herald through 1994, this book also includes several longer pieces Dave Barry wrote for other publications, including one about the "natural" birth of his son, an expose of a Western Florida UFO hoax, and a couple of travelogues (of a sort) about a trip to China on the eve of Britain's withdrawal from Hong Kong and a boating trip to Bimini Bay. Also included is a rather serious ...more
Jan 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who: enjoy Barry, seek a light read.
Not the funniest book of Barry's that I've read, but I'm not sure that it's meant to be overtly humorous. There is undoubtedly an emphasis placed on the quirks and oddities of everyday life, with the occasional serious piece that seems to be included more for informational interest or emotional impact than laughs.

Whatever his goals may be, Barry is consistently enjoyable. When he wants to be, he's hysterical (his piece dedicated to a mock political thriller novel is a riot). When he decides to p
Aug 12, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 12, 2009 rated it it was amazing
You can't read this book and wonder why Barry is one of the leading humor writers in the world; his writing is riddled with laugh-out-loud gems. It usually takes a lot to make me laugh, but this book had me quaking with giggles so often I had to stop reading it at night, so I wouldn't wake my husband. The two longer chapters - one on UFOs and the other Elvis fans - aren't as funny, but show off Barry's talent as a more "serious" writer, and are still entertaining in their own right.

This book is
Apr 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook, humor
A friend gave us tickets to hear Dave Barry speak at a Celebrity Forum in May. In anticipation of the event, I got this audiobook from the library so we could listen during our drive to Lake Tahoe. The introductions are read by Dave Barry and the stories themselves are read by Arte Johnson (remember "Laugh-In"?). The stories vary, but some are laugh-out-loud funny. Even my reticent husband was really laughing at some of the stories, especially those we could relate to like the airplane passenger ...more
Oct 15, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction, humor
I used to really like Dave Barry, so I picked up this collection to read and I found that he is still enjoyable but the stories in here seem somewhat dated. Originally published in 1994 the stories seemed stale. I don't know if it is because I read them before (I might have since I used to watch for his column in the paper) or it may be that I am at a different place in my life. If you haven't tried a Barry book, by all means try one. but try one of his newer books. Very short collection.
Daniel Brown
Aug 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Anything Dave Barry writes is gonna be good. He's like Stephen King in that sense. His humor was great in here. It dragged a little bit in the middle of the book, but once he got onto the music chapters, it really started to roll. I really liked the Elvis writeup along with the "worst songs" bits. I was really surprised with the story about his son getting hit by the car. I don't recall ever reading anything of his that was so serious and touching. Thumbs-up to Dave.
Apr 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
I just needed to laugh and nod my head, and this is one I hadn't read. There are a few Barry collections out there like that, but I don't make any effort to get at them. Like with David Sedaris, I'm scared to be all done.

Now, for needing to just laugh, I go to Barry. For liking some grittiness and touched-ness in there, I go to Sedaris. But damned if Dave Barry didn't almost make me cry.

These humor people, they get me.
May 26, 2009 rated it really liked it
I have to include this because Dave Barry actually taught me how to be a satirist. Yeah...not Jonathan Swift, Dave Barry. My English teacher introduced me to him when I was in high school and asked me to start imitating his style. From essentially directly biting off of him, I was able to shape my own writing style and become an effective (and in some circles, popular!) satirist in my own regard. Thanks, Dave!
Bill Eckhardt
Apr 25, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you like Dave Barry . .

I like Dave Barry. This is one more in his collection of absurd metaphors. Most are very clever and I find them entertaining for days after I've read the book. However you may find repeating them to others who you think might find them hilarious also . . . Well let me put it this way, it may lose a bit in the translation.

I'm about to get another Dave Barry book to perk me up.
Sep 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
I read a lot of Dave Barry as a kid, and found it to be pretty much the funniest stuff out there. Found this book on a $1 rack recently and thought I might dip back to an old favorite and see how it held up. Answer: pretty darn well. Not nearly as much side-splitting laughter this time around, but far more appreciation for his writing craft. And some of the poignant bits hit a lot harder this time around, too.
Mark Bouton
Mar 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
Somewhat outdated, due to its publication date, but still, some things never change. Very clever in his observations of the world and its foibles and exceptionally adept with hilarious turns of phrase. I've read a couple of his novels, too, and I'd recommend his books to anyone with a working sense of humor.
Mar 18, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I was living in a very tiny town with a small library. After I made my way through all their fiction I started in on the non-fiction and came across this book. I still remember Granny's great maroon couch all relaxed in the evening, the two of us reading away with CBC in the background. I snorted with laughter so many times reading this she even asked what was so funny. A great book!
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Dave Barry is a humor columnist. For 25 years he was a syndicated columnist whose work appeared in more than 500 newspapers in the United States and abroad. In 1988 he won the Pulitzer Prize for Commentary. Many people are still trying to figure out how this happened.
Dave has also written a total of 30 books, although virtually none of them contain useful information. Two of his books were used as