My real love is Young Adult Literature, with Adult Fiction not far behind, so I don’t venture off into non-fiction very often. But when the opportunity presented itself, I went for Tina Fey’s autobiography, Bossypants. Now, not gonna lie, I didn’t exactly read the book. Instead, I listened to it on CD. I had a forty-five minute commute to work every day, so I listened to a lot of audio books in the course of four years. What was so great about Bossypants was that it was read by Tina Fey herself. It even included sound bites from her most memorable SNL skit in which she impersonated Sarah Palin. Fey is a strong woman in a male-dominated profession, plus she’s super smart and funny, so she offers pearls of wisdom such as
- “In real life these women experienced different sides of the same sexism coin. People who didn’t like Hillary called her a ballbuster. People who didn’t like Sarah called her Caribou Barbie. People attempted to marginalize these women based on their gender.”
She’s also motivational and talks about women’s bodies, photoshopping, and being a woman in the entertainment industry.
- “Now if you’re not hot”, you are expected to work on it until you are. It’s like when you renovate a house and you’re legally required to leave just one of the original walls standing. If you don’t have a good body you have down to a neutral shape, then bolt on some breast implants, replace your teeth, dye you hair, and call yourself the Playmate of the Year. How do we survive this? How do we teach our daughters and our gay sons that they are good enough the way they are? We have to lead by example.”
I also found that I had a few things in common with her, like being kind of geeky and uncool, and not really loving animals.
- “I have no affinity for animals. I don’t hate animals and I would never hurt an animal; I just don’t actively care about them. When a coworker shows me cute pictures of her dog, I struggle to respond correctly, like an autistic person who has been taught to recognize human emotions from flash cards. In short, I am the worst.”
Thanks to this stroll into Non-fictionLand, I also wandered into Mindy Kaling’s Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (and Other Concerns). After these two works, I’m starting to believe that maybe non-fiction isn’t so bad after all.
Does anyone out there have non-fiction recommendations?