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02 February 2011


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I loved parts of this - especially when the chipmunk is freaking out about what jazz might be. Anal intercourse! And when he describes the chicken or turkey (can't remember - might be some other fowl) being enamored of a bathmat. Did he say, "instantly, senselessy taken with it" or something like that?

You mean jazz ISN'T anal intercourse?
You know I had to say it.
I can't wait to see what search hits I start getting after this conversation.
Yes, there's no doubt Sedaris knows his way around words ("instantly, senselessly," tee hee). The more I think about the few stories in this book I read the more I laugh about them--kind of makes me wish I'd read the whole thing. I might get it back from the library when I'm in a more whimsical mood.

I've never read Sedaris, so I'm guessing this isn't the best place to start?

I have to take a second to beg you to read the final story "The Grieving Owl" which is one of the best things I've read in a long time. Skip the rest if you must, but that one is just amazing.

Kerry, best place to start is probably Me Talk Pretty One Day or maybe Naked. Those are my faves.

Oh, and a sidenote. If you have the opportunity to listen to the audio, Sedaris reads them himself and it is HILARIOUS. Nothing like it.

I wouldn't start with this one, no, not if you're looking for representative Sedaris. It's a bit past the season for it, but I'd also look into a little collection called "Holidays on Ice"--that contains his essay about working as a Christmas elf at Macy's. And I second Beth: if you can get that or any of his essay books on tape, he really performs them more than he reads them. Pretty good stuff.

Well, I'd take a second look, but the book has already gone back to the library. Sigh. I think I read the Owl story--and typical of my memory lately, I've already forgotten it. Like I said, they were amusing but they just didn't light my fire. That's why I'm thinking I'll just try the book again when I'm in a different mood. Mood is very important to reading, I'm finding, more than I ever realized it was.

i totally agree with the mood thing. the grieving owl is the final story and it involves a hippo and leeches and is very funny. i listened to it read and i believe david reads that one himself (the audio has 4 people reading the different fables).

I'm glad you mentioned David Rakoff. I'm a big fan of his as well.

@Beth. The grieving owl. absolutely the best story. I've been laughing all day about it. a brilliant setup BRILLIANT!

The Grieving Owl is a brilliant story about friendship told using utterly amusing, absurd imagery. As a cynical writer, I can say it was life-changing. David is a genius. Thanks for listening.

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