Authors Note: The events described in these stories are realish.
Certain characters have fictitious names and identifying characteristics.
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Submersed in a good read, the only movements are the shift of my eyes and the rise or fall of my breathing chest. Unless I am reading David Sedaris. Then I giggle and snort, or nod my head with a crinkled brow, as if I am sitting in the room listening to him tell me a story.
One who highlights and flags the pages of any book I am reading, I revisited this book the other day because I was looking for a snippet called “The Feminine Mistake” in which David’s sister, Amy Sedaris, is mentioned. Since I recently finished a book of hers (see below) I was interested in a comment/theme the two had repeated… her desire to bring home lost items, give things a home, “just buy it, you’ll feel better.”
Of course, once I began I couldn’t stop reading When You Are Engulfed In Flames once more. A discussion of one of Amy’s purchases, a 1974 fetish magazine, had me laughing riotously (which is not good social behavior when sitting in a doctor’s waiting room, alone.)
Amy leaned closer and pointed to the bottom of the picture. “Look at the mud on the carpet,” she said, but I was way ahead of her.
“Number one reason not to blow a horse in your bedroom,” I told her, though it was actually much further down on the list. Number four maybe, the top slots being reserved for the loss of dignity, the invitation of disease, and the off chance that your parents might drop by.
This discussion is embedded within a chapter that, naturally, ultimately reminds us we humans are all alike.
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Originally published in hardcover by Warner Books, 2006
Paperback trade edition by Grand Central Publishing, 2008