Wednesday, December 11, 2019

You Better Not Cry by Augusten Burroughs

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4 Stars

After recently coming off a Burroughs’ induced Halloweeny high from the delightful Toil & Trouble, there was no chance I was going to let the holiday season go by without picking this one up. Once again this selection of stories reminded me of my Darling David in that the snapshots of life may have contained some dark aspects and the storyteller might have been a bit of a Negative Nelly, but the humor and sentimentality worked to (for the most part) keep spirits bright.

Included in this collection are tales about:

Eating Santa’s face – without ingesting some bathsalts first;
Building a gingerbread house tenement;
Asking for a pony;
Waking up hungover at the Waldorf Astoria next to Santa;
Waking up in a gaggle of homeless people;
Waking up to find your dream house flooded; and

Oh George . . . . .

That one was a heartbreaker. Kudos to you AB for making me have a feel. And for being my kindred spirit when it comes to the advent calendar . . . .

My mother surely must have regretted ever introducing me to the advent calendar, because now she could never take it away. It would be like getting your child hooked on heroin and then withholding their needle.

For the last eighteen days, it had been the single focus of my life. My mother would not allow me to open a new door before eight o’clock in the evening. By seven each night, I was sitting on the floor in front of the refrigerator like a dog, staring up at the calendar and asking her every few minutes, “Is it almost eight o’clock?”

Luckily I’m the adult in my house (and the advent calendar belongs to me because my children are Grinches who only are interested in Christmas for the presents and spend the rest of their lives holed up in their rooms), so I open the day’s little door as soon as I get up each morning . . . .


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