Thursday, May 10, 2012

Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson (Memoir, 18+)

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For fans of Tina Fey and David Sedaris-Internet star Jenny Lawson, aka The Bloggess, makes her literary debut.

When Jenny Lawson was little, all she ever wanted was to fit in. That dream was cut short by her fantastically unbalanced father (a professional taxidermist who created dead-animal hand puppets) and a childhood of wearing winter shoes made out of used bread sacks. It did, however, open up an opportunity for Lawson to find the humor in the strange shame spiral that is her life, and we are all the better for it.

Lawson's long-suffering husband and sweet daughter are the perfect comedic foils to her absurdities, and help her to uncover the surprising discovery that the most terribly human moments-the ones we want to pretend never happened-are the very same moments that make us the people we are today.

Let's Pretend This Never Happened is a poignantly disturbing, yet darkly hysterical tome for every intellectual misfit who thought they were the only ones to think the things that Lawson dares to say out loud. Like laughing at a funeral, this book is both irreverent and impossible to hold back once you get started (from GoodReads)

Oh geez.  Although the above description from GoodReads is technically correct it does not truly prepare you for the hilarity that you will find in this book.  I laughed at almost every page.  Even when Jenny is describing some of the most awful blows life can deal you she is finding the humor in it as well.  Because really, sometimes all we can do is laugh until we cry.  Or in some cases, cry until we laugh.     

I first discovered Jenny Lawson the way many people did – when her blog post, “And That’s Why You Should Learn To Pick Your Battles”, went viral.  I laughed until I cried.  The entire fiasco described was something I could see me and Shel being involved in.  I would be Jenny, eyeing the giant overpriced chicken and Shel would be Laura, instigating trouble by encouraging me to buy said chicken.  And the Executive Officer would be the one shutting the door in the poor chicken’s face.  After reading that post, I was smitten.  

Jenny (we are totally on a first name basis) has a wonderfully random, bizarre and inappropriate sense of humor.  The way she chooses to remember her life experiences is a talent we should all strive for.  Or if that isn’t a talent you are interested in having (what idiot doesn’t want that talent?), you can at least look at her life experiences and be grateful that you fortunately never had it that bad.  Which I admit to doing at points.  For example, I was really sad when my dog died but at least MY dog didn’t try to RISE FROM THE DEAD!  And although I have inadvertently interrupted the Executive Officer’s conference calls before, I can honestly say that his co-workers have never heard this gem of impropriety during a conference call: “guess who just found the dead bodies I’ve been searching for? ME, MOTHER*@#$%&.  I found the dead bodies.”  These are the types of daily occurrences that define Jenny Lawson’s life.  And we thank her for it everyday. 

I think you can already guess that I am going to tell you to READ THIS BOOK.  I can say with certainty that in December, when I choose my top ten reads of 2012, Let’s Pretend This Never happened will be on it.  Thank you Jenny Lawson for quite literally making me laugh out loud for hours. 


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