I'll Seize the Day Tomorrow

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Overview

Jonathan Goldstein worries. A lot.

A year before his fortieth birthday, and Jonathan isn’t where he thinks he should be. With no wife, no kids, no car, and no house—not even a houseboat—what does he have?

Through a series of wonderfully funny stories, Jonathan recounts the highs and lows of his last year in his thirties, weighing in on topics such as the mysterious McRib,  whether an automatic hand dryer can tell if you have a soul, and ...

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Overview

Jonathan Goldstein worries. A lot.

A year before his fortieth birthday, and Jonathan isn’t where he thinks he should be. With no wife, no kids, no car, and no house—not even a houseboat—what does he have?

Through a series of wonderfully funny stories, Jonathan recounts the highs and lows of his last year in his thirties, weighing in on topics such as the mysterious McRib,  whether an automatic hand dryer can tell if you have a soul, and the underestimated power of a toy poodle. Filled with Jonathan’s trademark wit, I’ll Seize the Day Tomorrow is the tale of one man’s journey to find some great truth on his road to forty . . . or maybe not.

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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Radio personality and novelist Goldstein (Ladies and Gentlemen, the Bible!, 2009, etc.) relates the details of the anxiety-ridden final 12 months of his youth before he turned 40. "I wish you could leap from thirty-eight, straight to forty," writes the author. "More dignity to it than hanging on to the last dregs of your thirties. Forty was the age at which I thought I'd have a house full of oak shelves spilling over with hardcover books." Unfortunately, the title is a telling prelude to the kind of bland, non–knee-slapping humor in the latest from the This American Life contributor. The author is another squeaky-clean Seinfeld-ian humorist whose more-clever-than-funny attempts to milk mundaneness and quotidian life for laughs never quite hit their mark on a consistent level. To be fair, it's not exactly easy to bring an original twist to dealing in print with one's childish fears of turning 40, and Goldstein breaks no new ground in the long history of writers fretting about getting old. The author structures his brief existentialist-lite vignettes by the week, beginning at number 52 and counting down, ending with a chapter on his dreaded 40th birthday. Along the way, his silly midlife crisis manifests itself in experimenting with colognes, conversing with automatic hand-dryers, eating large quantities of ice cream, adopting a toy poodle, vacationing in Puerto Rico, obsessing over McDonald's McRib sandwiches and ruminating about how the local coffee jerk resembles Eugene Levy. Though mildly amusing, these activities are never as hilarious as Goldstein obviously thinks they are. There's no real penetrating comedic insight into the human condition, just a jumbled mass of existential clowning and absurdist verbiage that's more self-indulgent than self-examining. Safe, collegiate humor that makes Dave Barry look like Bill Hicks.
From the Publisher
“Jonathan Goldstein is one of today’s most original and intelligent comic voices. He has done for radio what Larry David has done for television. And in his new book he proves, once again, that his wry, self-deprecating observations work just as well on the page.” - David Bezmozgis, author of Natasha and Other Stories and The Free World

“Jonathan Goldstein has created something uniquely funny, smart, and touching. I love this book.” - Neil Pasricha, author of The New York Times bestseller The Book of Awesome

“Surrounded by [Goldstein’s] cast of family and friends, this chronicle of his 39th year is a portrait of a life that is striving towards hope and beauty—even wisdom—against the relentless pull of the gravity that is one’s own character, and the entropy that is age ... I smiled or laughed at every page.” - Sheila Heti, author of How Should a Person Be?

“One of the funniest books I’ve read in a long time. Jonathan is like a mix of Louis C.K., Jean-Paul Sartre, and Sholem Aleichem. I guess what I’m trying to say is that he’s hilarious, philosophical, and Jewish. I want to be Jonathan Goldstein when I turn 40. (Note: I’m 44, but you know what I mean).” - A.J. Jacobs, author of the The New York Times bestseller The Year of Living Biblically

“Jonathan Goldstein’s existential misery makes for good reading. As long as he keeps writing such funny and original pieces about it, I hope he continues to suffer.” - Shalom Auslander, author of Foreskin’s Lament

“I’ll Seize the Day Tomorrow is packed with Goldstein’s trademark combo of sharp-edged wit and tender wisdom. It’s his funniest book yet!” - Miriam Toews, author of A Complicated Kindness

“With his brilliant deadpan and his all-seeing eye, the hilarious Jonathan Goldstein traffics in what he calls ‘moderate hopefulness.’ It fills me with wild optimism.” - Henry Alford, author of Would It Kill You To Stop Doing That?

“Jonathan Goldstein is like no one else. He’s constantly surprising, simultaneously poetic and hilarious; an honest-to-goodness artist.” - David Rakoff, bestselling author of Don’t Get Too Comfortable

“Jonathan Goldstein is one of the funniest and most original writers I can think of. Anything by him is better than anything by just about anyone else.” - David Sedaris,author of the New York Times bestseller Me Talk Pretty One Day

"Move over, Woody Allen. Make way for Jonathan Goldstein. New misery. New hilarity.... I’ll Seize the Day Tomorrow, should raise him to the upper strata of the humour pantheon.... He brings self-deprecation to a whole other level. And he should leave most howling.... Goldstein melds the Everyman hysteria of Louis C.K. with the existentialism of Sartre and converts it into a melancholic comic form that’s almost impossible to resist." - The Gazette (Montreal)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780143187516
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Canada, Limited
  • Publication date: 5/28/2013
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Jonathan Goldstein’s writing has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, GQ, and The National Post. He is a regular contributor to Public Radio International’s This American Life and is the author of Ladies and Gentlemen, The Bible! and Lenny Bruce Is Dead. His radio show, WireTap, is now in its ninth season.

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