The humorous essays in the memoir, Is That The Shirt You’re Wearing?, a 2018 Thurber Prize Semi-Finalist, are woven together by journal entries from two summers in the author’s life when absolutely everything happened.
The essays address a diverse range of topics, from Brakeman hating being called “Ma’am” (and proposing a wonderful alternative), to accidentally teaching her seven year old daughter to swear; from discovering the perils of shopping in the loud and stinky Hollister store, to being scolded by a Very Important Singer. Each essay is introduced by a journal entry that provides a humorous or poignant (yet always very relatable) update on the lives of her husband, three daughters, and elderly, yet still guilt-inducing mom. The journal entries emphasize the cyclical nature of life, and trace the author’s bumpy transformation from chronic planner to one who discovers the joy of living in the moment before she runs out of moments.
This is not a mommy blogger whining about her kids. Instead it’s a slice-of-life of a typical American family, a chronicle of the ups and downs of modern life. Readers of Brakeman’s previously published essays have compared her writing to that of Nora Ephron. Though the humor is often wry in tone, ultimately people will find this collection to be life affirming.
When not writing, mothering, daughter-ing, or wife-ing, Brakeman works behind-the-scenes on variety television shows. Also, she is a nice person and eats her vegetables.
PS. She lies about the vegetables.
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.60(d)|
About the Author
Table of Contents
TABLE OF CONTENTS BOOK ONE: Summer of My Discontent Yearbooks Should Be Buried in a Deep, Deep Hole Don't Call Me Ma'am Teaching My Daughter to Swear The Oregon Caves: Two Hours of Terror, A Lifetime of Pain I Chat, You Chat Buddy, You Complete Me The Heightist Amongst Us Too Saggy for the SAG Awards You Will Buy My Cookies Sample Day in a Mom's Summer "Vacation" My Dreamy Boyfriend The Bad, Awful, Horrible News My Madonna Story My Husband Had Prostate Cancer And All I Got Was This Stupid T-shirt Mother Versus Nature Sharp Like Knives Is That The Shirt You're Wearing? Grandpa Your Vitamin Water Angers Me Lake Inferior Take Me Out of the Wretched Softball Game Lunch With Two Joans I Wish I Knew You, Dead Person Don't Dye Alone Hollister Hell BOOK TWO: Summer of Please Don't End Babies . . . Eeh Gluten Free Drop out 10 Ways to Annoy Your Kids Things Left Behind How MUMPS Like Me Ruined Facebook Don't Hate Me Because I Can't Hear You We Can't Let The Duck-Faced Women Win A Jury of My Peers Not Another Slumber Party Chopper Lives . . . And Lives . . . And Lives Parenting Tips The Experts Won't Tell You It's Just A Damn Chair (A Damn Comfy Chair) Health Hazards You Can't Ignore The Healing Power of the Gay Softball Moms The New Bizarre Online Security Questions It Was Only Five Dollars Sorry I'm Thin and Irksome Laundry and College in 7 Easy Steps Chopper Part Three: In Which His Reign Of Terror Finally Ends You Toy With Me Facebook Parent Group Gone Wrong You Will Meet A Handsome Stranger
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Reviewed by Lucinda E Clarke for Readers' Favorite Is That the Shirt You’re Wearing? by Kristen Brakeman is a collection of short essays, most of them previously published in various magazines and periodicals. They chart the progress of the long summer holidays when all three of her children are home, two teenagers and one still at primary school. As a freelance editor working in television, and a full time mother, the author is fully occupied as she bounces from one activity to another disaster in a desperate bid to hold it all together. To add to the chaos, she has worries about her own mother’s health and feels guilty she is not giving her enough attention. Throw into the mix first one, and then a second dog, a cat, and the lack of funds to pay for the very expensive college her eldest daughter has set her heart on. There is a countdown at the beginning of each insert as the holiday period blissfully comes closer to ending and the children’s return to school. In Is That the Shirt You’re Wearing? by Kristen Brakeman, the author covers a wide range of subjects, from teenage behaviour, to softball mums socializing, to vacations, visits to the vets, meal times, video games and many, many more. I loved this book - her writing reminds me of Erma Bombeck and I laughed out loud at page after page. A mother after my own heart who has a down to earth approach to her children. Many of the children’s remarks were not only funny, but also insightful. So, this is a humorous book, but it also raises many issues that made me stop and think as well. Welcoming a same sex family, the emails about the proposed fund-raising event, the reticence over returning a pair of shoes the wrong size, and lots of other topics. Yes, these are everyday events we all face, but in this book they are given a delightful twist. Recommended reading, especially for the days when your children are leapfrogging over the furniture, swinging from the chandeliers, and the dog has just thrown up on the Persian carpet. Ignore it all, download this book, and lose yourself in it. A well deserved 5 stars.