Friday, April 20, 2012

Book Recommendation: Let's Pretend This Never Happened

Jenny Lawson (also known as The Bloggess) wrote a book called Let's Pretend This Never Happened.

It came out this past Tuesday and is a (more or less) true memoir of her life to date. She talks about growing up way less than privileged in a rural West Texas town. She describes a childhood with a father who randomly decided to become a taxidermist (and ended up being really good at it) and who also had a penchant for bringing home random wild animals (like bobcats, or turkeys he insisted were quails) to join the family as pets.

If you are aware of her or her blog, you also know that she suffers from depression and all kinds of anxiety. She discusses that in her book as well, in a frank and amusing manner, because it is part of who she is and she has learned to be fine with who she is. She also wants people to know about this stuff so that they can recognize it in others (and either be supportive and helpful to those others or avoid them at all costs per their discretion). Don't get me wrong, she discusses some painful and unpleasant moments from her life, right along with the good stuff. But she still somehow manages to inject humor into those moments. It's a dark humor, sure, but humor all the same. She got me to laugh at a situation that I have never been able to laugh at (can barely even talk about because something similar also happened to me and usually thinking about it happening to anyone just makes me want to cry). That's worth the price of admission right there.

I'm only about a third of the way through, but I can already tell you that it is fantastic. There is a chapter dealing with her time working in HR and all of the weird crap she had to put up with in that job. You can find an excerpt of that chapter here. But when I got just past the bit I had already read before on her website, I hit a bit that had me laughing so freaking hard I had to get up and walk away from the book because I couldn't even finish reading the sentence anyhow, and also, I was getting close to blacking out from the lack of breathing because of the aforementioned laughing.

She's on tour right now and will be in Dallas next Thursday. I'm going. By myself even, because her discussions of her anxiety makes me feel like maybe I should just suck it up and stop being so damn shy. See, she's good therapy, too. Also, I feel like I should make her a present, because this is woman who needs all the hugs in the world for many, many reasons. I shall have to think on what that present should be though.

I want to give this book to every woman I know, it is so wonderful and wrong and awesome. Mother's Day is coming up too, now that I think of it. If you know a mom who can handle some colorful language, hey, this might make a good gift. So, if you are looking for something interesting to read, hey, look, here's a great suggestion. You're welcome.

No, seriously. You're welcome.

Just make sure that you're not operating any heavy machinery or anything when you pick it up.

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