Title: Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Author: David Sedaris
Published June 2004
I absolutely love David Sedaris. He is the type of guy I would have been friends with in high school. Guys who really didn't fit in, but who were such great people it was a shame others didn't appreciate them and their differences. I have read all of his books, and this one was typical, hilarious Sedaris. The book centers for the most part on his relationship with his family. His parents were atypical, to say the least. Even though his family seems really eccentric, I am sure you will find something familiar in the way they relate to each other.
The chapter that affected me the most was "Chicken in the Henhouse." The story starts with David being stuck in a crummy hotel room listening to a radio talk show about the church sex scandals. The caller is going on and on about how homosexuals are praying on small children, and in general, ruining the sanctity of our world. As a gay man, he doesn't exactly have a high opinion of mankind when the show is over. He goes to the lobby and encounters a young boy trying to carry multiple drinks back to his room from the lobby buffet. The rest of the chapter is about David's struggle with wanting to help, but being afraid of what others will think of a strange man helping a young boy. He offers his assistance, and by the end of the story, is totally distraught over his decision to help. It made me so sad to think that being a caring human being can sometimes come with so many complications. The world can be a really shitty place sometimes. I hope my daughter has the good fortune of being friends with "guys like David" in high school. She will be a better person because of it. I know I am.