Mark Leyner, William Goldberg, Billy Goldberg. Three Rivers Press, $14 (217pp) ISBN 978-1-4000-8231-5
Urban legends and perennial wonders get a witty treatment in this lighthearted guide to largely inconsequential yet intriguing aspects of the human body. Leyner, a novelist whose writing appears regularly in the New Yorker and GQ, and New York physician Goldberg address food and the body (does coffee stunt your growth?), ""body oddities"" (what are goose bumps?), folk remedies (does breast milk cure warts?), drugs (does marijuana help glaucoma?), bathroom humor (why can you ignite a fart?), medical media (is the show ER accurate?), old wives tales (can lip balm be addictive?) and aging (why do old ladies grow beards?). And then there's the sex chapter-definitely the one where the subtitle is most applicable, with questions like ""can people in wheelchairs still have sex?"" and ""do the kind of underpants men wear affect their fertility?"" The book includes e-mail interactions between the authors, which are sometimes funny. Some of the authors' answers are unsatisfactory and, as a whole, this is much more of a humor book than a health one. The truly curious will find better, more in-depth answers on medical Web sites, but those looking for a good laugh will have some fun with this book.
Reviewed on: 07/25/2005
Synopsis: Is There a Doctor in the House?
Say you’re at a party. You’ve had a martini or three, and you mingle through the crowd, wondering how long you need to stay before going out for pizza. Suddenly you’re introduced to someone new, Dr. Nice Tomeetya. You forget the pizza. Now is the perfect time to bring up all those strange questions you’d like to ask during an office visit with your own doctor but haven’t had the guts (or more likely the time) to do so. You’re filled with liquid courage . . . now is your chance! If you’ve ever wanted to ask a doctor . . .
•How do people in wheelchairs have sex?
•Why do I get a killer headache when I suck down my milkshake too fast?
•Can I lose my contact lens inside my head forever?
•Why does asparagus make my pee smell?
•Why do old people grow hair on their ears?
•Is the old adage “beer before liquor, never sicker, liquor before beer . . .” really true?
. . . then Why Do Men Have Nipples? is the book for you.
Compiled by Billy Goldberg, an emergency medicine physician, and Mark Leyner, bestselling author and well-known satirist, Why Do Men Have Nipples? offers real factual and really funny answers to some of the big questions about the oddities of our bodies.
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