As I crossed “dystopian novel” off the 2016 Reading Challenge, I looked at the category above it: “A book written by a comedian”. I don’t have a lot of experience reading that genre, but it sounded pleasant enough. I did an internet search and found a list of books by comedians.
I chose The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption and Pee, by Sarah Silverman, on a whim. It was available for download from the library.
The Bedwetter was published in 2010.
The book starts off as a fairly interesting memoir of Sarah Silverman’s childhood in New Hampshire, dealing with depression, and her parents’ divorce, becoming a vegetarian at an early age, and coping with nocturnal enuresis until she was sixteen. It includes stories of becoming a stand-up comedian in New York, and her short career as a writer/performer for Saturday Night Live. (Nothing she wrote ever made it to the SNL stage.)
Of course, it’s written by Sarah Silverman, so it contains many jokes about body parts and body functions.
The book contains a foreword and a “midword” – both written by Sarah Silverman, in which she ridicules both the book and its author. (“If you’re famous, you get to write a book, and not the other way around…“, she explains.)
The second half of the book is a series of episodes about the process of writing comedy. She explains and defends some of her more notorious performances – telling a joke about a racist (which got her accused of being a racist), her jokes about Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, and the dress she wore to the Emmys.
There is an extended segment about the history and production of The Sarah Silverman Program, including its unconventional writing sessions. I haven’t seen more than an episode or two of the show, but I found the segment interesting.
The book closes with an afterword, written by God on December 1, 2063, explaining all the wonderful contributions Sarah Silverman has made to Mankind, during her long and successful career.
I found The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption and Pee to be entertaining and funny. (I could have enjoyed it more without the silly foreword, midword, and afterword.) I especially enjoyed the parts where she wrote about philosophy and politics. She adopted a “Make it A Treat” viewpoint, suggested by a friend (a variation of “everything in moderation”) – the reason she smokes marijuana, but doesn’t drink alcohol. Sarah Silverman is a long-time advocate for Equal Rights, and campaigned to elect Barack Obama president.
- A book written by a comedian