Cover image for Dress your family in corduroy and denim
Title:
Dress your family in corduroy and denim
Author:
Sedaris, David.
Personal Author:
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
Boston : Little, Brown, [2004]

©2004
Physical Description:
257 pages ; 22 cm
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780316143462
Format :
Book

Available:*

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Summary

Summary

David Sedaris plays in the snow with his sisters. He goes on vacation with his family. He gets a job selling drinks. He attends his brother's wedding. He mops his sister's floor. He gives directions to a lost traveler. He eats a hamburger. He has his blood sugar tested. It all sounds so normal, doesn't it? In his newest collection of essays, David Sedaris lifts the corner of ordinary life, revealing the absurdity teeming below its surface. His world is alive with obscure desires and hidden motives -- a world where forgiveness is automatic and an argument can be the highest form of love. Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim is another unforgettable collection from one of the wittiest and most original writers at work today.


Author Notes

David Sedaris was born in Binghamton, New York on December 26, 1956, but he grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina. Much of Sedaris' humor is autobiographical and self-deprecating, and it often concerns his family life, his middle class upbringing in the suburbs of North Carolina. He graduated from the Art Institute of Chicago in 1987. He is a popular radio commentator, essayist, and short story writer. He held many part-time and odd jobs before getting a job reading excerpts from his diaries on National Public Radio in 1992.

His first collection of essays and short stories, Barrel Fever, was published in 1994. His other works include Naked, Holidays on Ice, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, When You Are Engulfed in Flames, Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary, Theft by Finding: Diaries (1977-2002), and Calypso. Me Talk Pretty One Day won the Thurber Prize for American Humor in 2001. He has also written several plays with his sister Amy Sedaris including Stump the Host, Stitches, and The Little Frieda Mysteries. In 2014 her title, Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls, made The New York Times Best Seller List.

(Bowker Author Biography) David Sedaris recently moved from New York to Paris. Raised in North Carolina, he has worked as a housecleaner &, most famously, as a part-time elf for Macy's. Several of his plays have been produced, & he is a regular contributor to Public Radio International's "This American Life." His essays have been featured in "The New Yorker", "Harper's", & "Esquire". He is the author of the books "Barrel Fever", "Naked", & "Holidays on Ice".

(Publisher Provided)


Reviews 4

Publisher's Weekly Review

In his latest collection, Sedaris has found his heart. This is not to suggest that the author of Me Talk Pretty One Day and other bestselling books has lost his edge. The 27 essays here (many previously published in Esquire, G.Q. or the New Yorker, or broadcast on NPR's This American Life) include his best and funniest writing yet. Here is Sedaris's family in all its odd glory. Here is his father dragging his mortified son over to the home of one of the most popular boys in school, a boy possessed of "an uncanny ability to please people," demanding that the boy's parents pay for the root canal that Sedaris underwent after the boy hit him in the mouth with a rock. Here is his oldest sister, Lisa, imploring him to keep her beloved Amazon parrot out of a proposed movie based on his writing. (" `Will I have to be fat in the movie?' she asked.") Here is his mother, his muse, locking the kids out of the house after one snow day too many, playing the wry, brilliant commentator on his life until her untimely death from cancer. His mother emerges as one of the most poignant and original female characters in contemporary literature. She balances bitter and sweet, tart and rich-and so does Sedaris, because this is what life is like. "You should look at yourself," his mother says in one piece, as young Sedaris crams Halloween candy into his mouth rather than share it. He does what she says and then some, and what emerges is the deepest kind of humor, the human comedy. Author tour. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Booklist Review

Sedaris' piquant essays are as meticulously honed and precisely timed as the best stand-up comic routines, which is, of course, what they are. A National Public Radio star, the author of five best-sellers, including Me Talk Pretty One Day (2000) , and a hall-filling performer, Sedaris--openly gay, nervy as a tightrope walker, sharply hilarious, teasingly misanthropic yet genuinely compassionate--has a unique ability to supply exactly the right details to bring every funny, awkward, ludicrous, painful, horrible real-life moment into harrowingly crisp focus. But given all that he has already revealed about his childhood, family, and bizarre adventures, one wonders how he can continue to mine his life to create fresh and arresting essays, and, indeed, a few pieces do feel strained. It stretches one's credulity, for instance, to envision young Sedaris panhandling or taking erotic advantage of a strip poker game. But when he muses over his parents' slumlord phase, remembers a rich aunt and a neglected nine-year-old girl, and profiles his over-the-top brother, he is mesmerizing, and his ability to make the reader gasp, laugh out loud, or grow teary is undiminished. At the same time, there's an increased edginess to his work, reminding readers that beneath the brio, Sedaris, gifted connoisseur of the absurd, is deadly serious. --Donna Seaman Copyright 2004 Booklist


Library Journal Review

Starred Review. This collection of humorous essays won Audies for humor and short stories/collections in 2005 and was nominated in the narration by author category. Sedaris is a perennial Audie favorite, winning for David Sedaris: Live at Carnegie Hall and When You Are Engulfed in Flames and receiving nominations for Me Talk Pretty Some Day, Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk, Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls, and two separate box sets. (LJ 5/15/05) (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


School Library Journal Review

Adult/High School-This lighthearted follow-up to Me Talk Pretty One Day (Little, Brown, 2000) contains a selection of personal essays. Some of the pieces appeared previously in magazines or on the NPR radio program This American Life. The first half of the collection focuses on Sedaris's childhood, including his relationship with his supportive mother and "man's man" of a father. Family vacations, snow days from school, and parental conflicts are all rendered in a comic style. Several of the pieces highlight the author's growing up with the knowledge that he is gay. He writes about the mixture of feelings he experienced in a real but funny manner. The second half moves Sedaris into adulthood. Although still dealing chiefly with his family, the focus shifts to his brother and sisters. From Tiffany, who collects and sells junk right from her house, to macho, floor-sanding Paul, Sedaris sets up a family dynamic that's sometimes odd, sometimes sad, but always funny. A handful of pieces include or refer to his life partner, Hugh. Whether it's apartment searching in "Possession" or the clash of personalities in "A Can of Worms," it's refreshing to see a writer portray a gay relationship that's committed and monogamous. Although not as unified as his other books, this collection serves as a touching reminder of how odd, funny, and unique our lives really are.-Matthew L. Moffett, Northern Virginia Community College, Annandale (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Excerpts

Excerpts

The eagerly awaited collection of personal essays from the author of the #1 bestseller Me Talk Pretty One Day. In Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, David Sedaris (Grammy Award Nominee) lifts the corner of ordinary life, revealing the absurdity teeming below its surface. His world is alive with obscure desires and hidden motives--a world where forgiveness is automatic and an argument can be the highest form of love. Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim is another unforgettable collection from one of the wittiest and most original writers at work today. Excerpted from Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim by David Sedaris All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Us and Themp. 9
Let It Snowp. 22
The Ship Shapep. 27
Full Housep. 43
Consider the Starsp. 57
Monie Changes Everythingp. 72
The Change in Mep. 94
Hejirap. 112
Slumus Lordicusp. 116
The Girl Next Doorp. 133
Blood Workp. 155
The End of the Affairp. 172
Repeat After Mep. 176
Six to Eight Black Menp. 196
Rooster at the Hitchin' Postp. 206
Possessionp. 224
Put a Lid on Itp. 233
A Can of Wormsp. 253
Chicken in the Henhousep. 260
Who's the Chef?p. 277
Baby Einsteinp. 284
Nuit of the Living Deadp. 302