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The CEO of the Sofa

3.37  ·  Rating details ·  513 Ratings  ·  37 Reviews
New York Times best-selling author P. J. O'Rourke lobbed one-liners on the battlefields of the Gulf War, traded quips with communist rebels in the jungles of the Philippines, and went undercover at the Dome of the Rock Mosque as P.J. of Arabia. Now, in his most challenging adventure, he journeys to the heart of that truly harrowing place -- his living room. The CEO of the ...more
ebook, 288 pages
Published December 1st 2007 by Grove Press (first published January 1st 2001)
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Dannii Elle
Apr 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was prepared for the political density (some of which went straight over my head!) but I was not prepared for the darkly satirical humour that also permeated this book. O'Rourke managed to make a series of essays, on topics I am not hugely knowledgeable about, as engaging as they were humorous. Whilst some of the facts stated are now outdated, this is still a relevant and interesting non-ficton, delivered in an individual style, and managing to be altogether damning of society.
Jul 24, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: someone with wobbly furniture in need of a shim
Three chapters and DONE.

Man, PJ O'Rourke used to be somebody. His work at National Lampoon was great, and the "High School Yearbook Parody" he helmed there is a high point in American humor. As a proto-neocon pundit, even when he was completely disagreeable, he remained a wit. Here he's going for Oliver Wendell Holmes but comes off as an open-mic comic crossed with Andy Rooney ("I hate cell phones! And people who use earpieces with their cellphones look like crazy people talking to themselves!"
THE CEO OF THE SOFA contained five chapters I really liked, and another seven or eight I could have easily done without. O'Rourke's witty prose never flags, but much of the humor in the book falls flat. At his best, O'Rourke is like a cross between Dennis Miller and Dave Barry. His comedy is very high brow (often to a fault), yet he also manages to pass himself off as an everyday sort of guy. THE CEO OF THE SOFA isn't for everybody. Much of the subject matter is dense, politically charged, and/o ...more
May 15, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
PJ's books were a lot better when he was still drinking heavily and snorting a lot of coke. This whole "I'm a dad, and gosh, that makes me ponder things" was done better by Erma Bombeck and Dave Barry.
Oct 28, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
I am "somewhere to the left" of Mr. O'Rourke, having come from a Republican family, myself. However I find his writing incredibly funny as hell, especially when he is attacking sacred cows. I feel there is nothing in politics worthy of sacred cowdom. Especially these days.
An added bonus is his description of a trip to India which, you might presuppose, would be full of nothing but the usual conservative snark. (If conservative snark is your bag, then you would be better off reading Ann Coulter.
John Bruni
Apr 14, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you like your political humor loaded down with facts, then this is the book for you. O'Rourke is an incredibly smart man who can get you to laugh, even if his style is dryer than a martini, sometimes. It is a very dated book, so if you don't remember the political climate of 2001 before 9/11, then you might not get much out of this one. I find it's interesting that the timeline O'Rourke goes through ends one month before everything in America changed. I wonder how different this book would ha ...more
Perry Whitford
I grew up convinced that it was impossible for an American right-winger to be amusing. Then I read Holidays in Hell by P.J. O'Rourke.

A hippy turned yuppy, the worst kind of turncoat in many ways, O'Rourke embraced the credo of greed wholesale, poking fun at his previous beliefs while singing the praises of shameless excess and the free market with an apology-free arrogance impossible to resist.

Essentially he is a magazine writer, his books being merely attempts of varying conviction to resale a
Kevin Rubin
P.J. O'Rourke is simply one of the funniest writers out there and this book is no exception. It had me laughing aloud in quite a bit of it.

It's mostly shorter pieces, presented like a month-by-month diary, with little related. O'Rourke is relatively conservative and rants and raves about Democrats, but doesn't spare Republicans, either.

His cast includes his neighbor, named The Political Nut, who is even loonier than him, his wife who is the voice of reason to remind him when his rants go too fa
Nov 01, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
I remember seeing PJ O'Rourke's name on the cover of Rolling Stone all the time when I was a teenager, but I never read the articles because I hate politics and was always looking for something about Prince instead. I came across this in a used bookstore recently though and thought I'd give it a whirl.

This is a super funny book, kind of stream-of-consciousness, pointlessly divided into 12 sections, one for each month of a year. It ends in August 2001, which sucks, because I would really have lik
Fc O'neill
PJ O Rourke is a tosser, an American tosser and a yankee republican tosser to boot. In a world of smug pricks, he has collected all the discarded smucks, sewn them together and made a sleeping bag so he can be a smug prick inside a snug prick. He's funny because he's no holds barred poisonous. I'd wear disposable rubber gloves to read this shit, just to remind myou that right-wing sleight of hand agit-prop is at work. He's an ardent free-marketeer and this book of satire throws light on the rece ...more
Scott Bartlett
Nov 08, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Scott by:
PJ is intelligent though disputable. His predispositions about political parties are apparent, yet also cleverly disguised wide open as polemical diatribe (in other words his character is Republican and stuck up about it, though the criticisms accross all parties are laugh inside, as opposed to laugh out loud...)
So currently I'm about a 1/2 the way into the audio book 4 and a half hours...
The book begins with a survey of the UN and a typical Republican conservative critique which is obviously co
Jack Burnett
Sep 16, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
As funny as anything O'Rourke writes, and as he concentrates less on politics and foreign policy and more on family and everyday life, it's probably more accessible to more people. It's written in a style meant to riff off The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table by Oliver Wendell Holmes (Sr.), and in such a way that the style itself makes for some hilarity. I love O'Rourke; if you don't, you probably won't like it, but it's the book of his you have the best chance of liking, I think.
Corny at first, makes you wonder - is this the same PJ O'Rourke who wrote that excellent travel bit about India? Sure enough it is, but where in a magazine article a manageable dose of cynicism and cleverness (an undesirable trait) is all right, in a book it'll either make you give up after page 5 or keep plodding on. We'll see how this one turns out.
Aug 29, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Went to Strand Books looking for those YA series on Flying Teens pursued by flying Wolf-teens, but fell into the Non-Fiction gap again. O'Rourke has always been a solid writer with Rolling Stone magazine and I should've sought out some of his books much sooner. Only just started, but bound to be full of great political and social commentaries on the lighter side.
Dec 06, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Not as good as PJ's other work. It is mostly a rehash of previous articles and columns strung together with a bit of a narrative that tends to distract from rather than compliment his musings.

Also, it is based on his writings in 2001, but ends in August. So many of his opinions look uninformed in light of 9/11. So again, it is not as enjoyable as his other works.
John somers
Excellent. A usual I disagreed with an awful lot that he said but loved the way that he said it. The sections on the UN and a drive through India were particularly good as is the section describing a number of modern celebrities.
Kurt Meeske
Tedious. I want my time back. My reading selections are sometimes very random and this book demonstrates the downside of that system. Looking on the bright side, my next "goodread" will be all the more enjoyable....there's that to look forward to.
Jun 03, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
PJ O'Rourke i had only heard in passing on any number of occasions. I thought he was clever but after reading this offering it seems that he is just a boorish aging white guy who is past his prime and apparently past anything worth saying.
Mar 27, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The only one of his books that I have not really enjoyed. A grab bag of articles from around 2000. Nothing staler than reading the "Clintons are evil" rants in 2011. Most of the rest forgettable soon after reading. No focus and no punch.
Rajendra  prabhu k
wish there were more like this
Michael Dippold
Feb 27, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Apr 12, 2008 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I love PJ O'Rourke...haven't read this one yet, but the rest of his books are pretty good
Vasudevan VM
Apr 24, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pick this book up if you have say some 4 hours of free time - a good time pass and a pure O'Rourke magic.
P.J. takes a look at contemporary society from the vbiewpoint of a mature white, conservative, male, with his usual appreciation for the absurd.
Big D
Nov 15, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I love reading P.J. O'Rourke! This was his worst written and/or worst edited book to date. Unlike any of the other books (all of them?) I have read. Strange.
Amusing bits, but not one of his best
Robert JA  Basilio Jr.
O' Rourke trying to replicate Oliver Wendell Holmes' writings in the Breakfast Table. A bit forced and less funny than the others.
Almah Tararia
If you are fan of his writing, this is your book.
good updating of Holmes' Autocrat of the Breakfast Table.
Not bad.

Not the best book by P. J. O'Rourke I've read, but a serviceable way to pass an afternoon.
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Goodreads Librari...: Missing Page Count for ISBN 0871138255 2 13 Oct 12, 2013 12:03AM  
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Patrick Jake "P. J." O'Rourke is an American political satirist, journalist, writer, and author. O'Rourke is the H. L. Mencken Research Fellow at the Cato Institute and is a regular correspondent for The Atlantic Monthly, The American Spectator, and The Weekly Standard, and frequent panelist on National Public Radio's game show Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!. Since 2011 O'Rourke has been a columnist ...more
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