David Sedaris is one of my favorite writers and his latest book, Calypso, does not disappoint. He’s hilarious. His observations on people and life can be a tad rude, and yet spot on. From the cover blurb – This is beach reading for people who detest beaches, required reading for those who loathe small talk, and love a good tumor joke. Calypso is simultaneously Sedaris’ darkest and warmest book yet – it is comedy born out of that vertiginous moment when your own body betrays you and you realize that the story of your life is made up of more past than future.
His twist of phrase, his timing, and his family dynamics will keep you turning the pages. In each essay, you feel like he’s just hanging out telling stories. I’ve been to one of his author talks and that’s worth the price of admission in itself. He’s quirky and knows it and can laugh at himself.
He’s bought a beach house and family can gather. Oh, the stories there…and his thoughts too -
p.13 When visitors leave, I feel like an actor watching the audience file out of the theater, and it was no different with my sisters. The show over, Hugh and I returned to lesser versions of ourselves.
p.67 I’m not sure how it is in small families, but in large ones relationships tend to shift over time. You might be best friends with one brother or sister, then two years later, it might be someone else. It doesn’t mean you’ve fallen out….just that you’ve merged into someone else’s lane. The beauty of it is that it’s always changing.
p.91 Memory aside, the negative just makes for a better story: the plane was delayed, an infection set in, outlaws arrived. Happiness is harder to put into words.
Well I can state that David Sedaris makes me happy. His writing is just different in a good way. He’s funny and also can be poignant, then hit a snarky note that’s perfect.
Catch that Calypso beat.