This is a book that I’m glad to have heard rather than read, because David Sedaris is a great narrator and performer and I love his North Carolina accent impressions. This is the first David Sedaris Book that I’ve listened to and when I don’t want to listen to the radio in my car, I always enjoy playing it back for the tenth time. The jokes are clever and subtle and he is a good storyteller. Like many other comedians his humor is mostly a self-deprecating autobiography, but what’s unique about him is that he is really good at shifting from tragedy to comedy. When he talks about his troubles as a lisping gay 12 year old, you do feel sorry for him being such a misfit in school, but right when it is getting too bitter, he adds a witty twist to the situation and makes you laugh.
The most funny parts of the book are the stories about his eccentric family members, especially his dad. I also love the French class piece where he makes fun of the mean French teacher that dissuades him from learning French all together. That really resonates with me, because I had a similar experience in Germany. There is a funny part where the christian French language students try to explain Easter to a Moroccan classmate:
“it is a party for the little boy of god, who calls his self Jesus and…” “and he die one day on two morsels of lumber”. “he die one day and then he go above my head to live with your father. He weared of himself the long hair and after he die the first day, he come back here for to say hello to the peoples.He nice, the Jesus.He make the good things and on Easter we sad because somebody make him dead today.”
He is by no means a laugh out loud type of comedian. Yet, he has a way of writing about his boring peculiarities and make them sound interesting. Like the fact that after living in Paris for so many years, he hasn’t visited the Louvre or Notre Dame and his favorite pastime is sitting in a movie theater, because movie theaters are still popular and respected in Paris. Maybe I like his work, because I am sometime as weird as he is and would like to make my stories as marketable as he does!