Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Calypso by David Sedaris


I recently read one of the most gut-punchingly sad books I've picked up in a while and it left me in such a funk that I found myself in desperate need of something happy to read. While skimming through my Kindle, I saw David Sedaris's name crop up and thought to myself, "Aha! CALYPSO! This will do. Mr. Sedaris never makes me cry-- unless it's with tears of laughter!"

So of course, obviously in my grievous time of need, I find out that CALYPSO is one of Mr. Sedaris's sadder works, revolving around the death of his mother and sister, and the pains of getting older. THANK YOU FOR PUNCHING ME WHILE I'M ALREADY GASPING, MR. SEDARIS. Don't worry, though, the sad bits are couched in his usual trademark dark humor, so even though it's a bit greyer than his typical fare, there's still a laughing rainbow in the background.

I have a weird sense of humor, and if you want to know what my sense of humor is like, pick up a book by David Sedaris. He's grumpy, he's sarcastic, he's introverted and neurotic. Sometimes he's a little un-PC, but mostly he seems to delight in just how weird everyone can be. It's oddly wholesome, in a way. I laughed out loud at how obsessively he began using his FitBit (because same); his pleasure at telling people weird, gross stories (also same); the sweating terror of soiling himself in a public place (as someone with a food sensitivity that triggers intestinal distress, big same); and I just can't get over how he named his beachside property the "Sea Section." CALYPSO made me a little sad, but it also made me laugh a lot, and I love his interactions with his husband and his family so much.

If you have been burned on so-called comedic memoirs before, give Sedaris a try.

4 out of 5 stars

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