When I finally confessed to my friend that I wasn’t really into the book, she agreed it’s definitely not his best book and urged me to read Naked. Great! I’d bought Naked a while ago, so before the show I ransacked my house looking for Naked…and never found it. I’ll most definitely be keeping my eye open for it and will begin it as soon as it turns up, but until then…
So. The book was okay, but it was so obvious he was exaggerating in some parts, that I just didn’t find it funny. Exaggerating is practically required for humor, but too much exaggeration and I can’t find the situation funny.
It’s not that I didn’t like the book, though. I’m just ambivalant towards it. A rogue giggle did escape while I was reading, and plenty of smiles crossed my face, which is why, if I’m assured he only gets better from here, I’m willing to keep trying.
Seeing him live, though…I had a good time, but I was confuzzled at all the people who were giggling if he just looked out at the audience. He would take a breath and the audience would be laughing before he started talking. And I know he writes essays, and seeing him live is like any other author reading – he reads from his book (in Sedaris’ case he reads from work that hasn’t yet been published) – but it lacked a certain je ne sais quoi. I was much more interested when he finally opened it up to questions, because he was TOTALLY FUNNY. And I probably would have liked it a lot more if he hadn’t been reading, but rather had just been talking.
My friend did a great job of telling about the crazy people in the audience. But please take note of the guy who thanked Sedaris for “sharing his life with us.” Who is the crazy person that thinks Sedaris hasn’t a) exaggerated his butt off (which is fine by me) or b) totally made stuff up? Seriously, Sedaris hasn’t “shared his life with us.” There’s probably a grain of truth to his stories, and his family is probably kooky-er than your average family, but really. Sedaris hasn’t become rich on sharing his life with us.
Have you read anything by David Sedaris? Do you think he’s funny? Have you seen him live?