Canada in a Thong

Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls: Essays Etc. by David Sedaris (2013): Funny, incisive and occasionally poignant set of globe-trotting essays and short-short pieces from New Yorker and NPR (and Craig Ferguson) regular David Sedaris. Sedaris got his big break relatively late in life when he started reading his anecdotal essays on National Public Radio.

Sedaris is witty and occasionally highbrow, from middle-class Greek-American roots, and with a healthy level of self-criticism. Perhaps we learn a bit too much about his gum disease. Really, that’s my main caveat.

Otherwise, the observations on politics and society are slipped effortlessly in with the observations about China (Sedaris hates going there because it’s incredibly dirty), Australia (“Canada in a thong”), his father (a bit of a dick but still going strong at 89), roadside litter (what do the people who roll up a candy bar wrapper and then stuff it into an empty pop bottle which they then throw pout their car window think they’re accomplishing?), drug and alcohol abuse, the difference between diaries and journals, and a wide assortment of other things. Recommended.

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