Junot Diaz on The Colbert Report

Pulitzer Prize winner Junot Diaz appeared on The Colbert Report last night to discuss the nerdiness of his title character in The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao; Joseph Pulitzer’s immigrant past; and his parents’ confusion about what the Pulitzer prize actually is. When Mr. Colbert asked about scenes in Mr. Diaz’s book that involve beatings in Dominican cane fields, Mr. Diaz replied: “Cane fields are scary. Any time you drive by them, they’re like triffids. They crack in the wind.”

Triffids are deadly, semi-intelligent, make-believe plants that have thick tentacles and spray poisonous gas featured in science fiction novels, including The Day of the Triffids by John Wyndham and Simon Clark’s The Night of the Triffids. Mr. Colbert scoffed: “We might have to check the building for structural damage, you geeked out on me so hard right now.” But he only revealed his own nerdiness by actually knowing what triffids are! Clip above.