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My Planet: Finding Humor in the Oddest Places

My Planet: Finding Humor in the Oddest Places

Написано Mary Roach

Озвучено Angela Dawe


My Planet: Finding Humor in the Oddest Places

Написано Mary Roach

Озвучено Angela Dawe

оценки:
3.5/5 (31 оценки)
Длина:
4 hours
Издатель:
Издано:
Sep 1, 2013
ISBN:
9781480532274
Формат:
Аудиокнига

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Описание

From acclaimed, New York Times bestselling author Mary Roach comes the complete collection of her "My Planet" articles published in Reader's Digest. She was a hit columnist in the magazine, and this audiobook features the articles she wrote in that time. Insightful and hilarious, Mary explores the ins and outs of the modern world: marriage, friends, family, food, technology, customer service, dental floss, and ants-she leaves no element of the American experience unchecked for its inherent paradoxes, pleasures, and foibles.
Издатель:
Издано:
Sep 1, 2013
ISBN:
9781480532274
Формат:
Аудиокнига

Также доступно как...

Также доступно как книгеКниге

Об авторе

Mary Roach is the bestselling author of Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, Six Feet Over: Adventures in the Afterlife, Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, and Packing for Mars (978-1-85168-823-4). She has written for the Guardian, Wired, BBC Focus, GQ, and Vogue, among many others.


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3.6
31 оценки / 12 Обзоры
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Отзывы читателей

  • (4/5)
    I am a big fan of Mary Roach, and have read all of her books. She is funny, insightful, and smart. This book is a collection of articles she has written for Reader's Digest. All of them are short (3 pages each), and all have to do with day-to-day life.I highly recommend this book for light reading.
  • (3/5)
    Well. Having read this, I begin to understand why I didn't like Packing for Mars as much as I expected to. Mary Roach is a comedian; she doesn't punch down, or up much, mostly she punches level. Which is to say that 99% of her essays here were making fun of herself and her family. That's fine, much better than the folks who make fun of others - but it does mean that (at least in her professional persona) she doesn't like herself much. I really don't enjoy a whole book of someone whining about how her tastes are low-class, her understanding is minimal, when she tries to learn something or buy something fancy she hates it and retreats to her usual stuff...It could be funny. It's not. I got one chuckle out of the book, as far as I recall, from the essay about The Container Store - that was the only one that resonated with me. Mostly I like myself and am pleased with what I like, so the rest mostly bored me. And even in the very last essay, which ends on a sweeter note than most of the rest - a crowd in an RV, the trials and tribulations of this trip, focus on needing to stop in every bathroom along the way...they make it to the Grand Canyon, she says it's lovely but kind of empty and isolated, and they pile back into the RV to go quarreling but happy back home. OK, happy with themselves, that's good - but the Grand Canyon gets less than half a paragraph, she'd rather talk about truck stop bathrooms? I will try reading at least one more of her books (I already have Stiff), but I now don't really expect to enjoy it. This is not an author for me.
  • (5/5)
    In this collection of articles from her regular "My Planet" column in Readers' Digest, Mary Roach discusses her life, whether reflecting on how women over 40 have a hard time shopping ("The Naked Truth") or laughing about the difficulties of the self checkout machines ("Check it Out"). If you're familiar with Mary Roach, you know she's best known for her quirky, humorous science books that cover topics such as what happens to cadavers when bodies are donated to science, the afterlife, or sex. This collection doesn't really touch on that part of her life, but home and family. Her husband Ed and stepdaughters make an appearance, and her trademark humor make this collection really delightful reading. The short articles make it easy to pick up and put down when I had a few minutes here and there, and I laughed through many of the articles.
  • (4/5)
    Mary Roach is best known for her terrific books about quirky, sometimes disturbing, science topics, but this collection of short, humorous personal essays focuses instead on ordinary domestic things, from family road trips to the perils of eating in fancy restaurants. A lot of it revolves around her and her husband dealing with their completely opposite attitudes towards everything from hygiene to sports to proper bedtime etiquette. Roach can be extremely funny, and this book gave me a fair few laughs. I also like the fact that her comments about her husband's habits don't come across as stereotypical whiny complaints-about-the-spouse; they seem like two people who work with and are amused by each other's foibles, which is nice to see. (Less good is her occasional tendency to indulge in some gender stereotyping, especially in matters involving cars. But there's less of that than you often find books of this sort, so I'm inclined to let it go.)I really don't recommend reading too many of these pieces back-to-back, though. After a while, you start to realize how slight and inconsequential they are. And the humor may often be funny, but it's a very safe, bland type of humor, compared to her usual willingness to delve gleefully into all kinds of disgusting or ribald topics. Which shouldn't be too surprising, really, as these pieces originally appeared in Reader's Digest -- not exactly the edgiest of publications.
  • (4/5)
    Reminded me of Erma Bombeck.
  • (4/5)
    This review copy was kindly donated by Reader's Digest.My Planet is the complete collection of Mary Roach's Reader's Digest column. In this column Roach discusses "the wonder of the everyday." Each column is about 2-3 pages.I have read two of Mary Roach's books, Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers and Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, and I really enjoyed them. Roach does a great job of balancing humor with science. Anyway, like I noted earlier, this book focuses on "the wonder of everyday." What does this mean? She talks a lot about the mundane like cleaning the house, car repairs, family vacations, and the like but with a humorous edge. I found myself laughing out loud during almost every story. There was so much I found myself relating to in the stories. This is a book that I can see myself rereading on a rainy day.
  • (4/5)
    I know Mary Roach as a bestselling author of books, like Stiff and Bonk, (wait, they sound slightly pornographic) that incorporate science with humor. But I never knew that she wrote humor columns for Reader's Digest, mostly about her life with her husband Ed.These columns have been compiled in My Planet: Finding Humor in the Oddest Places, and it had me laughing so loud as I read it, my family stared at me as if I were crazy. I was crazy, crazy with laughter and recognition at Roach's observational humor.From page one, I was a goner. She describes her first date with her husband Ed, who got up from the table to wash his hands almost immediately upon being seated at the restaurant "like a little raccoon, leaning over the stream to to tidy himself before eating."She goes on to discuss their "hygiene gap". Ed immediately replaces the toilet seat when he moves to a new place because "he didn't know who'd been sitting on it." (I'm with Ed on that one.) Mary flossed her teeth in bed and drank straight from the OJ container. (Again, I side with Ed.)Mary used the "Designated Countertop Sponge to wash the dishes and the Designated Dishwashing Sponge to clean the bathtub" an act she describes as "tantamount to a bioterror attack", according to Ed. Ed had what Mary called "crud vision" and she didn't.She said that "like any normal couple, we refused to accept each other's differences and did whatever we could to annoy one another." It just got funnier from there.Mary makes lists: "daily, To Do lists, long-term To Do lists, shopping lists and packing lists." Ed reluctantly makes lists on the corner of newspapers that are illegible. Making lists keeps her anxiety levels down, while Ed controls his anxiety by forgetting to make lists.Her best list is composed of party guests that dates from 1997. On occasion she updates it, deleting people who have moved away, adding new friends. They are never having this party, but just updating the list is a party for Roach. (I think I know some people like this.)Her essay on relatives visiting struck a chord of recognition. After day six, she says thatYou begin to view your guests through the magnifying glasses of the put-upon host. A TV set turned four decibels higher that you like it registers as "blaring." Making a 13-cent long-distance call is perceived as "running up my phone bill!"She concludes this essay by sayingFamily are people who live together- if only for a week at a time. They're people who drop towels on your bathroom floor, put your cups and glasses in the wrong place and complain about your weather. You do it to them, they do it to you, and none of you would have it any other way.One of the essays I most related to was about conjugal hearing loss that affects married couples. She says that married couples attempt to communicate with the other person is in a separate room or on separate floors, "preferably while one is running water or operating a vacuum cleaner or watching the Cedar Waxwings in the playoffs." (This is one of my pet peeves.)Other humorous topics include entering the Age of Skirted Swimwear, dropping off her car at the mechanic because it won't start only to have him call her and tell her he's charging her $50 because "she is stupid" (the car was out of gas, but she praised him for not ripping her off by claiming it was something more serious), and arguing about buying a sofa.Roach's essays reminded me of Erma Bombeck. She deals with life's issues in a relatable, funny and good spirited manner. This is a wonderful book to stick in the car and read while you are waiting for the kids at baseball practice or in a doctor's waiting room. It's good for laugh and you'll want to read aloud from it so that others can enjoy her humor too.
  • (2/5)
    Cheap quick gags, imo. Not natural from-the-heart humor. Exaggerated 'complaints' to make an obvious point, such as ridiculing the automated customer-service phone systems. And what's up with her husband? First he's hygienic to the point of being able to eat off the floor, next he's such a packrat that paperwork avalanches off his desk. What, he dusted each of these papers daily? Ah well, it's short. You might like it.
  • (4/5)
    I’ve enjoyed several of Roach’s other books, and she makes me crack up a lot, but I loved reading short, funnier slices of life from her. Reminds me of Bill Bryson’s columns.
  • (4/5)
    While this may not be Mary Roach's most sophisticated work (although to be fair, Readers Digest doesn't exactly scream "Nobel Prize"), I'll read just about anything Mary Roach wants to write. And even though I originally thought this would be along the lines of Stiff or Bonk, I LOL-ed through this entire book because she’s too funny for her own good.I've heard a couple of reviewers refer to this as bathroom reading - short essays designed to be read in the span of a few minutes - and that's probably the best way to approach this book. Trying to read large chunks of the book can be a little exhausting, especially when you realize just how many essays are included, but two or three provides a perfectly sized dose of her trademark humor.Such as:Like any normal couple, we refused to accept each other's differences and did whatever we could to annoy the other person.OrA family is a collection of people who share the same genes but cannot agree on a place to pull over for lunch.Or Not long ago, a mysterious Christmas card dropped through our mail slot. The envelope was addressed to a man named Raoul, who, I was relatively certain, did not live with us. While this may not be on par with her fascinating science writing, it did what it intended to do: it made me smile.Readalikes: Not many people are probably going to look for Readers Digest material readalikes, but here are a few other collections of humorous essays revolving around domestic life:Dad is Fat - Jim GaffiganI Didn't Ask to Be Born - Bill CosbyRaising the Perfect Child Through Guilt and Manipulation - Elizabeth Beckwith
  • (1/5)
    Couldn't get into it. Rambling stuff about her life. Boring. Mary explores the ins and outs of the modern world: marriage, friends, family, food, technology, customer service, dental floss, and ants—she leaves no element of the American experience unchecked for its inherent paradoxes, pleasures, and foibles.
  • (4/5)
    Mary Roach is one of the most quirky, witty, and amazing writers I have ever read. For me, she ranks up there with John Hodgman, Dave Barry, and Simon Winchester. Her latest book, My Planet, is a collection of 62 of her columns previously written for Reader’s Digest. They explore her world—everything from dishwashers to paint chips to RV vacations to makeup and beyond. Roach’s slant way of looking at life yields a ton more pleasure most people’s. After buying a Touchless Trashcan and finding that it open at random intervals when she passes, she theorizes that it simply wants a conversation or a hug. She wonders aloud why certain cold medicines contains both an expectorant and a cough suppressant, leaving her trapped phlegm is an endless, internal loop of despair. While at a new container store, she muses on the possibility of our civilization reaching a point where we’ll need containers for our containers. And so on.This is a good, slim volume of funny asides. It can easily serve as a bathroom reader or a nightstand book, around when you need a few pages to divert your attention. Although, you can just as easily (much like me) devour the whole thing in 3 hours, giddily laughing along while your wife thinks you’re slowly going insane. An absolutely fun book.