Adam Carolla (born May 27, 1964) is an American radio personality and television host, comedian and actor. He is the host of The Adam Carolla Podcast, before which he hosted a weekday morning radio program broadcast from Los Angeles and syndicated by CBS Radio until his home station changed formats.
Dorothy Parker (August 22, 1893 – June 7, 1967) was an American writer and poet, best known for her wit, wisecracks, and sharp eye for 20th century urban foibles. From a conflicted and unhappy childhood, Parker rose to acclaim, both for her literary output in such venues as The New Yorker and as a founding member of the Algonquin Round Table. Following the breakup of that circle, Parker traveled to Hollywood to pursue screenwriting.
Frank Vincent Zappa (December 21, 1940 – December 4, 1993) was an American composer, electric guitarist, record producer, and film director. In a career spanning more than 30 years, Zappa wrote rock, jazz, electronic, orchestral, and musique concrète works. He also directed feature-length films and music videos, and designed album covers. Zappa produced almost all of the more than 60 albums he released with the band Mothers of Invention and as a solo artist.
Gary Edward "Garrison" Keillor (born August 7, 1942) is an American author, storyteller, humorist, columnist, musician, satirist, and radio personality. He is known as host of the Minnesota Public Radio show A Prairie Home Companion.
Harry Julius Shearer (born December 23, 1943) is an American actor, comedian, writer, voice artist, musician, author and radio host. He is known for his long-running role on The Simpsons, his work on Saturday Night Live, the comedy band Spinal Tap and his radio program Le Show. Born in Los Angeles, California, Shearer began his career as a child actor, appearing in The Jack Benny Program, as well as the 1953 films Abbott and Costello Go to Mars and The Robe.
Eric Reed Boucher (born June 17, 1958), more widely known by the stage name Jello Biafra, is an American musician, spoken word artist and leading figure of the Green Party. Biafra first gained attention as the lead singer and songwriter for San Francisco punk rock band Dead Kennedys. After his time with the band concluded, he took over the influential independent record label Alternative Tentacles, founded in 1979 by him and Dead Kennedys bandmate East Bay Ray.
Richard S. "Kinky" Friedman (born November 1, 1944) is an American singer, songwriter, novelist, humorist, politician and former columnist for Texas Monthly who styles himself in the mold of popular Will Rogers and Mark Twain. He was one of two independent candidates in the 2006 election for the office of Governor of Texas. Receiving 12.6% of the vote, Friedman placed fourth in the six-person race.
Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. (November 11, 1922 – April 11, 2007) was an American novelist who wrote works blending satire, black comedy, and science fiction, such as Slaughterhouse-Five (1969), Cat's Cradle (1963), and Breakfast of Champions (1973). He was known for his humanist beliefs as well as being honorary president of the American Humanist Association. He is widely considered one of the most influential American writers of the 20th century.
Matthew Abram "Matt" Groening is an American cartoonist, screenwriter and producer. He is the creator of the comic strip Life in Hell as well as two successful television series, The Simpsons and Futurama. Groening made his first professional cartoon sale of Life in Hell to the avant-garde Wet magazine in 1978. The cartoon is still carried in 250 weekly newspapers. Life in Hell caught the attention of James L. Brooks.
Melvin "Mel" Kaminsky (born June 28, 1926), better known by his stage name Mel Brooks, is an American film director, screenwriter, composer, lyricist, comedian, actor, and producer. He is best known as a creator of broad film farces and comic parodies. Brooks is a member of the short list of entertainers with the distinction of having won an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, and a Tony award.
Robert Zubrin (born 19 April 1952) is an American aerospace engineer and author, best known for his advocacy of manned Mars exploration. He was the driving force behind Mars Direct—a proposal intended to produce significant reductions in the cost and complexity of such a mission. The key idea was to use the Martian atmosphere to produce oxygen, water, and rocket propellant for the surface stay and return journey.
Thomas Andrew "Tom" Lehrer (born April 9, 1928) is an American singer-songwriter, satirist, pianist, and mathematician. He has lectured on mathematics and musical theater. Lehrer is best known for the pithy, humorous songs he recorded in the 1950s and 1960s. His work often parodies popular song forms, such as in "The Elements", where he sets the names of the chemical elements to the tune of the "Major-General's Song" from Gilbert and Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance.
Washington Irving (April 3, 1783 – November 28, 1859) was an American author, essayist, biographer and historian of the early 19th century. He was best known for his short stories "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and "Rip Van Winkle", both of which appear in his book The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent.
Patrick Jake O'Rourke (born November 14, 1947 in Toledo, Ohio) 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...
William Melvin "Bill" Hicks (December 16, 1961 – February 26, 1994) was an American stand-up comedian and social critic. His humor challenged mainstream beliefs, aiming to "enlighten people to think for themselves."
Leonard Alfred Schneider (October 13, 1925 – August 3, 1966), better known by the stage name Lenny Bruce, was an extremely influential and controversial American stand-up comedian, writer, social critic and satirist of the 1950s and 1960s, whose comedy revolved heavily around the social stigmas and taboos of the era in which he lived. His 1964 conviction in an obscenity trial was followed by a posthumous pardon, the first in New York state history.
Harry Sinclair Lewis (February 7, 1885 – January 10, 1951) was an American novelist, short-story writer, and playwright. In 1930, he became the first American to be awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, "for his vigorous and graphic art of description and his ability to create, with wit and humor, new types of characters. " His works are known for their insightful and critical views of American society and capitalist values, as well as their strong characterizations of modern working women.
Henry Louis "H. L. " Mencken (September 12, 1880 – January 29, 1956), was an American journalist, essayist, magazine editor, satirist, acerbic critic of American life and culture, and a student of American English. Mencken, known as the "Sage of Baltimore", is regarded as one of the most influential American writers and prose stylists of the first half of the 20th century.
Charles Michael "Chuck" Palahniuk (born February 21, 1962) is an American transgressional fiction novelist and freelance journalist. He is best known for the award-winning novel Fight Club, which was later made into a film directed by David Fincher. He lives near Vancouver, Washington.