TheeErin / Flickr / Creative Commons

Like jazz, stand-up comedy is an American invention.

Greg Hernandez / Creative Commons

B.J. Novak cut his writing teeth on comedic TV scripts, most notably for "The Office" where he also played Ryan Howard.

Eventually, he got a book contract. Instead of a comic memoir, Novak set to work writing short fiction in One More Thing: Stories and More Stories.

Novak’s father was a ghost writer whose book Iacocca sold millions of copies but only paid a flat fee—from this, Novak learned how to negotiate the publishing world. He landed a six-figure, two-book contract with the most prestigious literary publishing company, Alfred A Knopf.

The Heat is an unusual buddy-cop movie in that the odd couple cops are women-- it's also unusual in being very funny indeed, and has a plot that pretty clearly hangs together, though it does not particularly feature credibility.

Many moons ago, I read somewhere about Google's way of treating its employees, which was almost like pampered children-- with free food, and weight rooms, and office compounds very much like amusement parks.