Friday, October 27, 2006

David Sedaris Live and the Crappy Place that Hosted Him

So much for mobile blogging. I logged in expecting to see the picture I took on Friday of David Sedaris at Copley Symphony Hall and have since tried three times, but nope. No love. All the more disappointing because just as I was making the final adjustments on the big camera for the perfect close-up picture, they scolded me. Point being, my only photo of the evening, with which I could spite Copley Symphony Hall, is on my cell phone.

It doesn't matter much for you because the cell picture would have been a speck of David Sedaris on stage with a burst of orange behind him versus the nice book signing photo I was setting up (where I could have pointed out that his nostrils were bigger and hair grayer than I thought). The ban on photography especially chapped me because the entire event was sponsored by UCSD's Art Pwr. Some "art power" if you can't even take a picture! David Sedaris wasn't going to fade if I took a picture! Neither was the theater! I never even use a flash! I wasn't in the way or holding up a line! And nevermind the free, *good* publicity I was going to give you. Ergh. Bastards. I see time devoted to a fake press badge in my future.

It wasn't the best way to start the event--because you have to understand that as I was taking the picture, an usher walked up, said there was no photography but that he'd let it go, and right as I was about to snap, another eagle-eyed usher (the irony was her eyes were wonky) practically swung down out of nowhere on a rope and landed in front of me, and went nuts. Permission granted, permission taken away. Arguments worth nobody's time.

I'll stop because I thought the majority of this post would be devoted to David Sedaris and his awesome reading. Whenever I read him, there's a certain circularity to his stories that seem incomplete. I don't have a specific example at the moment, but I've had the distinct feeling several time of "that was really funny but how does it all connect?" I guess because the funny is often a tangent from where the story starts. BUT whenever I hear him on This American Life or in person, the same story does feel complete. Maybe he's more of a comedian than a writer because his stories are written to be read aloud. I had read "The Understudy" in the New Yorker a couple of months ago and thought it was okay, but when he read it in person? Hilarious. Why is that?

For the Halloween spirit he also read a piece from his time spent at a morgue. This was hysterical. Somewhat reminiscent of Mary Roach's Stiff for me, yet the jokes about morgue life were still pretty fresh.

And the guy is just as funny off-the-cuff. He talked about a recent trip to Tokyo and his newfound obsession with the place and how he can't wait to go back. Particularly great, to him, were the signs because every last one of them was "cute." He said there was this one sign that warned "Cigarettes are held at a child's eye level" and that it had the cutest picture of a cigarette stuck in a little girl's eye.

I had never paid for a reading before, but David Sedaris is worth it. Go see him.

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