David Sedaris

Nikki & I went down to Joseph-Beth at Southside Works today for a book reading and signing by David Sedaris. I'm glad we got there as early as we did (arrived at 12:30 for the 2:00 reading), because that allowed us to get a seat even after getting iced coffees and a snack at the adjoining Caribou Coffee. We decided to buy the book and get it signed, though we hadn't necessarily planned to do that – but it gave Nikki something to read while we waited. I picked a new Dave Barry book off the shelf and read that. It was really crowded, people standing all over the whole store by 2:00, including all around the upstairs, looking down. Just before starting, Mr Sedaris saw an older woman standing, and carried his nice comfy chair over for her.

So Mr Sedaris read one of the stories from his new book, When You Are Engulfed in Flames: he read Of Mice and Men, which was (sort of) about a news item about a flaming mouse. Very funny stuff, and very enjoyable to hear him read it. Then he pulled out a bunch of loose papers which he said was his diary, and read us excerpts from the past year or so. I suspect some of those items might eventually make it into books. Then he took questions, which was fun. In answer to one of the questions, we learned that he doesn't really like his writing that much, which I found interesting. There apparently are only a few of his stories he says he thinks are good. I wondered how he knows when he's done with a story, if he's always unhappy with it. I wish I had thought of that question earlier.

Then they called people up to stand in line by the letter on our tickets (which we received when we bought the book). I suppose that's how it's always done, but I'd never been to a book signing before. We had gotten a "J" ticket, but a woman sitting in front of us before the reading started gave us her "D" ticket because she could stand in line with her friend, who had a "B". So that was nice! Otherwise, we'd probably still be there! The line moved very slowly, because he personalized each autograph, and chatted with each person a bit, which was great. I told Nikki she could have the book, since it was her idea to come, so she now has a personalized copy – it says "To Nikki – I respect your ancestors" – David Sedaris. Not quite sure what that means, but still. An extremely enjoyable afternoon.


Then we went to REI (also in Southside Works) and bought this, because we discovered after the downpour on Memorial Day that our old Eureka tent's floor is now pervious – not a good thing. They let me set it up completely in the store, so I could see how it went together and if the size would work. So we're officially a 2-person-tent family [couple] - the kids will have to buy their own gear now.  🙂

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