Last Summer, when our vacation plans fell through, my wife and I decided to just hop in the car and drive as far north as we could up Highway 1 along the Pacific Coast. Before we left, my wife bought the audiobook version of David Sedaris’ “Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim” on iTunes. We listened to the entire book as we meandered our way through San Luis Obispo, Monterey, San Francisco, Marin County, Mendocino, all the way up to Eureka, and on through to Portland. We listened to it a second time as we blitzkrieged down Interstate 5 back to Los Angeles in a day-and-a-half. I think we only had a dozen or so near-crashes due to uncontrollable laughter.
David Sedaris’ stories are for listening. They are meant to be read aloud, preferably by Sedaris, himself, in his trademark sardonic lisp. And I can’t help it; whenever I hear him recite a sarcastic line by one of his family members, no matter who it is, I always picture his sister Amy as “Jerri” from Strangers With Candy.
Here’s an interview with David Sedaris from last night’s Fresh Air. There is also a bonus excerpt from his new book, “When You Are Engulfed In Flames,” a story entitled, “It’s Catching.”
“A few weeks later, the same thing happened to Maw Hamrick, which is what I call Hugh’s mother, Joan. Her worm was a bit shorter than her son’s, not that the size really matters. If I was a child and saw something creeping out of a hole in my mother’s leg, I would march to the nearest orphanage and put myself up for adoption. I would burn all pictures of her, destroy anything she had ever given me, and start all over because that is simply disgusting. A dad can be crawling with parasites and somehow it’s OK, but on a mom, or any woman, really, it’s unforgivable.”
I’d rate the laugh-out-loud factor for this at about a three. Good stuff.