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Our Dumb World: Atlas of the Planet Earth    by The Onion order for
Our Dumb World
by The Onion
Order:  USA  Can
Little, Brown & Co., 2007 (2007)
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

The back cover of this seventy-third Edition of Our Dumb World: Atlas of the Planet Earth advises that it 'is destined to become the most important book of the new century perhaps the most indispensable volume in your home reference library. In fact, go ahead and throw out all of your other books in the garbage right now.'

The Onion claims it is the 'world's leading humor publication distributed in print, radio, and online at' The volume is large and it is humorous. Very much so. Taking a page for each country or as many as can be fitted into this coffee table book (it's too tall for the normal bookcase) facts are presented (or rather what the folks responsible for this publication call facts). Such as 'Peru. Always with the goddamn Pan Flutes!'; 'Ecuador. Science How Ecuadorians will evolve in the coming years' - they will have 'Lava-resistant skin. Ability to sleep through earthquakes. Hand cupped in permanent "begging" position. Innate sense of impending misery.'

I could continue, but I'm sure you get the idea. Hilarious and irreverent facts are on each page. And it's not just targeting foreign countries. The good ol' United States is also represented. With The Onion's tongue-in-cheek attitude, nothing is sacred. We all could use a few good chuckles right now with the impending elections. Buy or steal a copy of Our Dumb World and treat yourself to fleeting moments of merriment.

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