Calypso by David Sedaris #davidsedaris #littlebrownandcompany #middleage #socialcommentary @absltmom

Look at that face and tell me you can believe that this man isn’t funny. He gives you that kind of smirk, that kind of sideways glance that makes you think wow this guy has got me pegged. …and you would be right. David Sedaris is in your face funny, irreverent always bearing a one two punch with his analysis of the world but mostly one of himself, as one can see from the following line from his book Barrel Fever. “If you’re looking for sympathy you’ll find it between shit and syphilis in the dictionary.” He is often times impertinent, irreverent, and sassy, but the things he says hit their mark and find a place where they become relevant and profound.


In this outing we find David and his family at his beach house on the coast of the Carolina’s. We meet his family looking forward to idyllic days of relaxation, playing board games, and getting a suntan or in some family members case sun burnt. David relates tales of his family, some cheeky and mocking and some with insight that is funny and charming. He has a weird family perhaps, but the care they have for one another is not that surface kind of lovey dovey, but in ways that run deep.

He is looking at life, his life, the life he shares with his partner, and the life he had as a child going at it with both barrels blazing away but allowing us to see the depth of his familial connections and the world they all inhabit.

Interesting and a quick and easy read, this book is a look see for those of us who “have more past than future.” It’s wickedly funny, tragically sad, and a “crusty” look at aging. As David wrote in one of his other books, “I haven’t the slightest idea how to change people, but still I keep a long list of prospective candidates just in case I should ever figure it out.” Perhaps David knows that changing oneself is harder than trying to change another and if you ever find out Mr Sedaris how to do just that, please write another book and let us know how.

Sedaris came to prominence in 1992 when National Public Radio broadcast his essay “SantaLand Diaries.” He published his first collection of essays and short stories, Barrel Fever, in 1994. Each of his four subsequent essay collections, Naked (1997), Holidays on Ice (1997), Me Talk Pretty One Day (2000), Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim (2004), and When You Are Engulfed in Flames (2008) have become New York Times Best Sellers.

As of 2008, his books have collectively sold seven million copies. Much of Sedaris’ humor is autobiographical and self-deprecating, and it often concerns his family life, his middle class upbringing in the suburbs of Raleigh, North Carolina, Greek heritage, various jobs, education, drug use, homosexuality, and his life in France with his partner, Hugh Hamrick.


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