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There's No Toilet Paper . . . on the Road Less Traveled: The Best of Travel Humor and Misadventure (Travelers' Tales) Paperback – November 16, 2005

ISBN-13: 978-1932361278 ISBN-10: 1932361278 Edition: English Language

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Product Details

  • Series: Travelers' Tales
  • Paperback: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Travelers' Tales; English Language edition (November 16, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1932361278
  • ISBN-13: 978-1932361278
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 4.8 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #438,735 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By C. E. Stevens VINE VOICE on October 19, 2006
I don't know what I was expecting, but the level of humor in these stories varied fairly dramatically. Maybe the "if you don't find our stories funny, it's you not us" line in the introduction should have been a warning. Some were laugh out loud funny (I have to say A Simian in the Cinema was the most memorable, and the two Bill Bryson stories didn't disappoint) and some were able to coax a smile out of me. But many others just weren't that funny. Some just weren't funny to begin with (An Irishman in Vurjinny and The Duck of Peace come to mind) and many others ended just as they seemed to be getting into a groove. In general, this collection seemed to be going for quantity over quality. Fewer, longer, and better stories would have been more effective.

The title is deceiving as well ... the "road less traveled" apparently includes places like Disney World, Virginia, and Caribbean cruises. Some stories do not disappoint, in terms of exotic locales at least, but the vast majority of the stories rely on slapstick/situational humor of relatively low sophistication or physical humor that is disappointingly context-free. I suppose this book would make for fairly decent light-reading in an airport or on an airplane, but the quality of the promised "best of travel humor and misadventure" is a bit lacking. Heck, even I have had funnier and better "misadventures" on the road than most of these stories. This was a collection that I really wanted to like ... but I have a hard time giving it more than 3~3.5 stars.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Bladeforger on February 16, 2008
Verified Purchase
You might think that this book will have something about motorcycle travel. Or, failing that, you might think it would have a funny story about some motorcycle being used to carry a sheep. Right??? That's on the cover!

The stories range from mildly disturbing revelations (tapir ticks on, well, you can imagine the various appendages) to tales of frustration (bus ticket workers who pretend to not know how to speak English) to pearls of wisdom (watch where you step in desert sands).

Make no mistake, it's a funny book. However, it doesn't have any stories to appeal to a motorcycle traveler. Deceptive cover photos dilute the flavor of any book, and this is no exception.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By M. Reynard VINE VOICE on November 12, 2011
Ok, so I have to admit this one was better than some of the others put out in the series (Sand in My Bra, Whose Panties are These, etc.) but it still wasn't the greatest collection of travel stories out there. It was kind of hit and miss with the stories. They were either really good, or not so good at all.

Don't be misled by the name, this book is just a collection of short stories on the humors of travel. Its not about someone lacking toilet paper. These stories were written by various authors, some well known travel authors like Bill Bryson, others from people I have never heard of. They could range in location and a couple took place in the United States but the majority were over in Europe and Asia. Some were about the perils of travel in a foreign country, others about avoiding land mines in the desert. A particular favorite of mine took place on a luxury cruise ship where the author had difficulty with target shooting. But I had a lot of least favorites as well, like the story about what a new ride the author thinks should be at Disney, a bus ride in a developing country. It just kind of fell flat.

As said before this book had its ups and downs. There were more downs than ups, or at least flat lines though. But the few funny ones really did make the difference and I even giggled out loud for a couple of them. You could tell the regular humor writers apart from the others. Bill Bryson for example had some of the better narratives and having read some of his books I think he kept to the same tone as what he uses in them. The ones I didn't care for as much just seemed to illicit that feeling when someone tells a terrible joke and nervous laughter echos through the room. It just isn't comfortable.
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Any experienced traveler will be able to say, "Been there, Done that..." It's a collection of wacky and bizarre adventures from around the world by writers such as Peter Mayle, Paul Theroux, Steve Martin, and the Daves, Letterman and Barry, plus a bunch more. I wasn't searching for true, academic literature, but for lively, light entertainment while traveling, and I found it. The book had humor, and illustrates many of the crazy things that can happen to you and others while you're "fat, dumb and happy" on the road. It was a good companion for me on the plane ride to Shanghai. As an modern-day argonaut, I liked Mary Roach's under-stated quote in "Blinded by the White," which summed it up as, "It might have been wiser not to get lost..."
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You won't get caught with your pants down without any good travel humor to read if you pick up Doug Lansky's laugh-filled collection There's No Toilet Paper On The Road Less Traveled: it provides a hilarious set of stories from wacky, strange adventures of travel gone wrong around the world. From a dead 'peace duck' attached to a car which brings attention and respect where ever it roams to a journey to Disney World which proves less than magical, here's the perfect light-hearted take- along tote for vacation.
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