Saturday, March 08, 2008

Scott Adams is What's Write Today

I'm sure you know who Scott Adams is by now. He is probably as well known as Charles m. Schulz. If you're not quite sure who Mr. Adams is, check your local newspaper in the comics section - he is the creator of the Dilbert cartoon.

I have been surrounded by engineers most of my life - my brother was an electrical and mechanical engineer - my husband is an electrical engineer - my son is a mechanical engineer and my father inlaw was a civil engineer. So reading Dilbert has been a part of my regular repertoire of things to do for many, many years. And, will no doubt continue long into the future.

Scott Adams has also written several books including The Dilbert Principle, Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook and his most recent Stick to Drawing Comics Monkey Brain. The Dilbert Principle was Scott's attempt (he confesses to it on the inside cover flap) to "cash in on the lucrative business book market".

The book was published in 1996 and I do remember it as being a top seller and having many discussions in meetings and luncheons about what the tidbits and points of ridiculousness (and many laughs) included in the book. The book offers secrets to management success such as: Swearing you way to success, Great Lies of Management, How to Tell if Your Company is Doomed and The Importance of Hair for Male Leaders.

His latest book is not so much a business book but more of a commentary on life book. He takes a not so serious look at his Fear of Birds, Dangerous Donuts and The Problem with Being Clever. He also includes some of his Dilbert comics that did not make it into the newspaper exactly as written because they were not politically correct or were to saucy for the general reading public.

Scott's workplace humor is visible everyday in his cartoon and with his Dilbert Principle . His everyday, real-life humor is exemplified in the Monkey Brain book. For example, he has a favorite conspiracy theory, "My favorite conspiracy theory is the one that says the world is being run by a handful of ultra-rich captialists and that our our elected governments are mere puppets."

He also discusses why he wrote this book by saying in the introduction that he has failed at 90 percent of the things he has attempted. But then he goes into details that read as though he has won 90 percent of the things he's attempted. So he has a bit of contradiction in the opening pages.

The book is a good and laugh-along read. Scott does have some unique views of many mundane occurrences. The Dilbert comics included are alone worth the price of the book and the time to read it.

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