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If It's Not One Thing, It's Your Mother
Synopses & Reviews
Julia Sweeney, the delightful former cast member of Saturday Night Live, takes listeners into the depths of her family in this hilarious and unique parenting book.
Since her time on Saturday Night Live, where she created the infamous androgynous character “Pat,” Julia Sweeney has gone on to establish herself as a witty, captivating performer of one-woman shows, like God Said Ha!, In the Family Way, and Letting Go of God. She gave a TED talk sharing how she explained the birds and the bees to her eight-year-old daughter, Mulan, which ignited an incredible response. Now, when it comes to talking about motherhood, people want to hear what Julia has to say. If It’s Not One Thing, It’s Your Mother is her compilation of stories, revealing her painfully funny adventures and her poignant personal story of deciding to adopt as a single woman, her transition to traditional family after she married and took on the new role of at-home mother, and her insightful open-eyed wonder at the whole concept of motherhood for herself and others, too.
From being mistaken as her daughter’s grandmother to her theory that people who can’t make friends often resort to making children, Julia imparts a cutting edge, contemporary take on parenting, displaying a definite appreciation for the absurd. Poignant, provocative, and wise, Julia writes about parenting as only she can, laying out her mother-daughter experiences with religion, nannies, pets, schools, and much more.
A joy to listen to, this is one of the most amusing, and at times powerful, modern books on parenting.
“I took so long to assemble my lovely family. If only they would disappear.”
While Julia Sweeney is known as a talented comedienne and writer and performer of her one-woman shows, she is also a talented essayist. Happily for us, the past few years have provided her with some rich material. Julia adopted a Chinese girl named Mulan (“After the movie?”) and then, a few years later, married and moved from Los Angeles to Chicago. She writes about deciding to adopt her child, strollers, nannies (including the Chinese Pat), knitting, being adopted by a dog, The Food Network, and meeting Mr. Right through an email from a complete stranger who wrote, “Desperately Seeking Sweeney-in-Law.” She recounts how she explained the facts of life to nine-year-old Mulan, a story that became a wildly popular TED talk and YouTube video.
Some of the essays reveal Julia’s ability to find that essential thread of human connection, whether it’s with her mother-in-law, who candidly reveals a story that most people would keep a secret, or with an anonymous customer service rep during a late-night phone call. But no matter what the topic, Julia always writes with elegant precision, pinning her jokes with razor-sharp observations while articulating feelings that we all share.
Poignant, provocative, and wise, this is a funny, and at times powerful, memoir by a woman living her life with originality and intelligence.
About the Author
Julia Sweeney was a cast member of Saturday Night Live from 1990 to 1994. She has also written and performed in several successful, critically acclaimed one-woman shows, including God Said Ha!, which played on Broadway and was made into a film; In the Family Way, which appeared Off Broadway; and Letting Go of God, which was performed Off Broadway and made into a film. She lives outside of Chicago.Julia Sweeney was a cast member of Saturday Night Live from 1990 to 1994. She has also written and performed in several successful, critically acclaimed one-woman shows, including God Said Ha!, which played on Broadway and was made into a film; In the Family Way, which appeared Off Broadway; and Letting Go of God, which was performed Off Broadway and made into a film. She lives outside of Chicago.
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Arts and Entertainment » Humor » Anthologies