8. The Bedwetter by Sarah Silverman

I “read” this audiobook after reading pyrajane’s review a while back. I was looking for something entertaining that would keep me company on some long car rides I had coming. The audiobook version was pretty good. I didn’t love it as much as pyrajane did, but I do agree with a caveat from her review – you’ll like this book as much as you like Sarah Silverman’s comedy.

Which is to say, I enjoyed it. I definitely laughed out loud, a lot, but in comparison to the slew of other female comedian biographies I seem to be reading (previously Mindy Kaling, but Tina Fey’sBossypants is forthcoming, and I’m currently reading the Parks and Rec book about Pawnee, which I feel fits into this category) I didn’t love this book as much as I did the others. And I think that has to do with how I feel about Sarah Silverman in general.

When I first watched Jesus is Magic in High School, I loved it. At that point, I hadn’t seen too much stand up, and seeing a female comic be so crass and unapologetic about some seriously weird and fucked up jokes was pretty awesome. Like I said, I hadn’t seen many crass female comedians at this point- that’s not to say they didn’t, and don’t exist – see Margaret Cho, Chelsea Handler, Lisa Lampanelli, etc. but I just hadn’t been exposed to them at this point. Nonetheless, seeing Sarah Silverman onstage just going for some really gross, crude jokes was a novelty for me. I really enjoyed it. In the beginning.

Now, the novelty seems to have worn off some. I still enjoy her humor, and I love that she refuses to censor her jokes just because some people think it’s inappropriate for a girl, or even in general. Comics push the boundaries of what is and isn’t funny, and I think Sarah Silverman does so without fear. It’s definitely gotten her into trouble before (which I was unaware of until I listened to the book) but she forges on. Towards the end of the book, Silverman addresses some apparent controversies about her stand up- namely some performances at award shows where she was lambasted for “going after” certain celebrities (in this case, I think it was Britney Spears and Paris Hilton). Silverman seems genuinely sorry about what happened, and explains these events as a misunderstanding- she wasn’t aware of different circumstances, etc. The rest of the book is more about different points in her career: the humiliation she suffered as a child, her struggles as a young comedian, and the horrors of summer camp as a chronic bedwetter (until the age of 17 or so, which truly sucks for her). I though it was interesting, and kind of nice, that she took the time (or space, really) in her book to try to explain her side of the story for what probably was a shitstorm on her end.

I’d probably give this book 3 stars? Pretty good – but it really depends on how much you like her comedy/brand of humor. I actually think I like this a little more than I like her standup, but that may be affected by one of the stories she includes about herself and Louis CK. Actually, my favorite parts were both about Louis CK- not surprising, since I love his comedy, and think he’s generally a weird, but good guy. One was a recollection of when she was a broke comic, just starting out- Louis CK’s apartment was barely furnished- just a bed or something, and instead of putting things on his walls, or using a pen and paper, he would write messages all over his apartment walls. Notes to himself, people’s phone numbers, new jokes to try. I think it was the way Silverman described it, but I thought it was funny. And the second Louis CK story- a time when they were both young, broke comics, and they started throwing their clothes off a balcony into an atrium (in one of their apartment buildings, I think) and had to go down to get them- completely naked. And then they kept doing it, again and again.

In summary, I think this was a good book to listen to on audiotape. I usually hate audiobooks and can’t stay awake, but this was funny and engaging, and kept me awake and alert for sure. It’s also something I probably never would have read had it not been on audiobook, and I think that’s a good thing- I did enjoy listening to it, and it’s was a nice break from all the academic reading I was doing at the time.


~ by lefaquin on March 6, 2012.

One Response to “8. The Bedwetter by Sarah Silverman”

  1. […] out the rest of my review here. Share this:ShareTwitterFacebookEmailDiggStumbleUpon Posted by lefaquin in 3 stars – a good book […]

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