His latest post mentioned an afternoon he spent at the Hamra Hotel pool, reading a borrowed copy of The New Yorker. I laughed out loud. He then mentioned an escapade in which he helped deliver 24 pizzas to American soldiers. I howled. Salam Pax, the most famous and most mysterious blogger in the world, was my interpreter. The New Yorker he had been reading–mine. Poolside at the Hamra–with me. The 24 pizzas–we had taken them to a unit of 82nd Airborne soldiers I was writing about. …
I needed a new interpreter to fill the gap for two weeks or so, and the colleague mentioned that he had just met a smart and friendly guy named Salam. I quickly traced Salam to the Sheraton Hotel. Salam–this is his real first name–was sitting in a chair in the lobby, reading Philip K. Dick’s The Man in the High Castle. I knew, at that moment, that I would hire him.
… we’ll all be hearing more from Salam: He has signed up to write a fortnightly column for the Guardian, and he continues to blog. He also continues to be surprised by the reaction to his work. When he was told by the Austrian interviewer that his fans had begun making ‘Salam Pax’ T-shirts and coffee mugs, his response was frank–‘Are you kidding?’ Nobody is kidding. The coffee mugs are for real, and Salam Pax is for real.
Thanks to Ben for another top tip. Ben, start a blog!