Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Book Review: Me Talk Pretty One Day

Want to read hilarious non-fiction: get a copy of "Me Talk Pretty One Day" by David Sedaris.

David Sedaris writes about his observations of the world, growing up, getting a job, living in Chicago. While most people shrug nasty encounters or get mad about them, David finds a funny twist and brings out the humor in them.

This book is a disconnected collection of his experiences growing up, moving out of his parental home, and learning French. Some essays are brilliantly insightful, where he discusses how the French language has gender for inanimate objects and how he constructed stories involving household objects like Mr. Belt to drive this point home. Or his description of religious festivities and symbology in the chapter hilariously titled, "Jesus Shaves". David also talks about his family and their antics. The best chapter was the one in which he describes his working life as a mover: how he accompanied a schizophrenic, a murderer and a communist in the moving business. His murderer friend says to him, "I can't say I'll never murder another person. It's unrealistic to live your life within such rigid parameters."

Sometimes you wonder, is David telling the truth? Is it true that his father stores away food for later consumption. Then you realize that every family has quirks, and indeed everyone is surrounded by quirky people. It takes David's eye to find funniness in everything and to show it to others.

(Image courtesy Wikipedia)