I will honestly say that David Sedaris is one of my favorite authors. Certainly in the top 3, next to Bram Stoker and JRR Tolkein. He’s incredibly witty, and his essays induce total hysteria.
Amongst my favorites are “Six to Eight Black Men”, “With a Pal Like That, Who Needs Enemies?”, “Me Talk Pretty One Day”, “See You Again Yesterday”, the ones with his brother, the Rooster, and tens of others. He’s one of the greeatest American humorist since Mark Twain. And I got to see him live.
So, Thursday night, my friend Ammon took me to see the fantastic writer and humorist David Sedaris live. It was an absolutely GLORIOUS event. It was absolutely hysterical and I LOVED IT. After the show, we waited in line for maybe an hour, an hour and a half, to get my book signed. I had brought Me Talk Pretty One Day, probably his best book he’s written. I had heard in one of his essays, “Author, Author” (featured in the audio presentation David Sedaris: Live for Your Listening Pleasure) that he gave out little presents to the teenagers who came to to the show. His view was that teens had fun “at the reach of their finger tips. Instead of having fun and taking bong hits in a stolen car, or getting pregnant in a neighbor’s shed, they have chosen to see a middle aged man read out loud.” And in gratitude, he’s given German band aids, Greek safety pins, and…condoms. And you know what happened? I was a total mess as I walked up to him. He asked our ages, and e both answered, Ammon stating he was 15 and I stating that I was 16. He beamed at us and said, “Well, that’s just great. You know I think that it’s a good time for you…” he reached under his book signing table to pull out a gallon plastic storage baggy, the kind reserved usually for chicken or steak when you put it in a freezer. It was full of small trinkets. Most notably, lubricant. “…to engage in anal sex.” He took out a strand of Trojan condoms and ripped off two for us. I was rather shocked. Thinking that, when listening to his essay in which he chronicles similar events, I brushed it off thinking that he’d just thank us for coming to the show and that I would ask him if he had Billie Holiday on his iPod. I gave him my book and he began a little conversation.
“So what do you do?” I answered proudly, if nervously, that I wrote movie reviews. He looked up interested and asked if I got them published anywhere and I told him I had a blog. And to my total shock he said “Could you write the address down for me?” Due to the fact my hand writing is wretched normally, it was made worse by the fact I was completely trembling. Thankfully it was legible, well, sort of. He thanked me and then spotted the shirt Ammon was wearing and commented about how perfect it was that he had a shirt with peanuts with him as he, Sedaris, had peanuts as a snack. He offered both of us a couple peanuts. He asked me what was the last film I had cried at and I told him Wall-E. I told him I loved how the robots were able to emulate human feelings with the look in their eyes. And I also threw in March of the Penguins well, after he had mentioned he welled up at the end. Earlier that night, he mentioned a Danish film he loved called Valhalla Rising which I had never heard of. I told him I would look it up. It actually stars Mads Mikkelsen, who was in Casino Royale. He gave me back my book and I took the condom, finally, off the table and thanked him very much for the evening. I left, completely shocked that he had asked me for my blog and laughing hysterically.
Certainly, it was one of the greatest nights of my life. Thank you so much Ammon for your kindness and your generosity. Thank you to David Sedaris for the laughs and the wit. And for mentioning Up in the Air.
A SHOUT OUT TO DAVID SEDARIS!
Blaze was actually written about thirty or so years ago under Stephen King’s pseudonym Richard Bachman. It was lost and not recovered until recently, whereas King rewrote parts of it and published it last year. Clayton Blaisdell Jr. is a petty criminal who works his “friend” George. After a series of small robberies from local places, George decides to kick it up a notch by pulling of a huge crime: kidnapping. And not just any kidnapping, George’s plans are to kidnap a baby and ask $1 million for ransom. But three months before the deal goes down, George dies. In his head, Blaze continually talks to George, sort of as a comforting companion who calls him “dummy” and “a**hole”. Nevertheless, the history of Blaze is fascinating and extremely well written. This book doesn’t have the same style as most of King’s books. But then again, that was why Stephen King began to write novels under another name. He apparently wanted to recreate his success. If success is based on literary style then he wins again. A surprisingly heartwarming book, Blaze is one of King’s greatest books, along with Dolores Claiborne, The Stand, and others. Blaze and The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon are the perfect argument for why Stephen King enthralls us every time.
The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon: B+