What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding: A Memoir

What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding: A Memoir

by Kristin Newman

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780804137607
Publisher: Crown/Archetype
Publication date: 05/20/2014
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 45,141
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.98(h) x 0.66(d)

About the Author

KRISTIN NEWMAN is a television writer who has worked in Hollywood for almost twenty years. She has written for That '70s Show, Chuck, How I Met Your Mother, and ABC's The Neighbors.

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What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding
Kristin Newman

Prologue
I’ll Have the House Special

                I am not a slut in the United States of America. I have rarely had a fewer-than-four-night stand in the Land of the Free. I don’t kiss married men or guys I work with, I don’t text people pictures of my genitalia, I don’t go home with boys I meet in bars before they have at least purchased me a couple of meals, I’ve never shown my boobs for beads. I do not sleep with more than one person at a time, and, sometimes, no more than one per year. In America.
                But I really love to travel.
                Now, having sex with foreigners is not the only whorish thing I do: I also write sitcoms. For the last fourteen years I’ve written for shows like That ’70s Show, How I Met Your Mother, Chuck, The Neighbors, and shows you’ve never heard of that nonetheless afford me two over-the- top lucky things: the money to buy plane tickets and the time off to travel. What this means about my life is that I spend about nine months a year in a room full of, mostly, poorly dressed men, telling dick jokes and overeating and, sometimes, sitting on the floor with Demi Moore, Ashton Kutcher, and a chimpanzee (before all three found the age difference insurmountable). In the writers’ room, we talk a million miles a minute, tearing each other apart for sport and, often, out of love. Sometimes someone makes me cry, and I pretend I’m doing a “bit” where I “run out of the room to cry” even though what I’m really doing is running out of the room to cry. If I’m lucky enough to be fully employed, I get about nine months of this and then a three-month hiatus—unpaid time off from this weird non- corporate grind.
                Most days, the writers’ room feels like I’m at the most entertaining dinner party in the world. Other times, it feels like I’m at the meanest, longest one. I keep both versions in perspective with my real life’s work—running away from home to someplace wonderful. And then, sometimes, having sex there.
                Throughout most of my twenties and thirties, in the hiatus months (or years) between shows, I spent between a few weeks and a few months a year traveling. When money was tight, I took road trips with a tent, and when it wasn’t, I got on a plane and went as far as I could, to places like China and New Zealand, Jordan and Brazil. To Tibet and Argentina and Australia and most of Europe. To Israel and Colombia and Russia and Iceland. In the beginning, I took these trips with girlfriends, but soon my girls started marrying boys, and then they started making new little girls and boys, and so then I started taking the trips alone. Some of these girls would eventually come back around after a divorce for a trip or two, but then leave me again when they got married for the second time before I’d managed to do it for the first. (When I complained to my friend Hope that she had lapped me in the marriage department, she replied, “I’m not sure the goal is to do it as often as possible.” I love her.)
 Anyway, everyone around me was engaged in a lot of engaging, marrying, and breeding while I remained resolutely terrified of doing any of it. I did want to have a family someday . . . it was just that “someday” never seemed to feel like “today.” I wanted love, but I also wanted freedom and adventure, and those two desires fought like angry obese sumo wrestlers in the dojo of my soul. That wrestling match threatened to body-slam me into a veritable Bridget-Jonesian-sad-girl singlehood, which I was resolutely against, both personally and as an archetype. And so toward that off, I kept moving.
                Pretty early on in my travel career I discovered two vital things. First, that I’m someone a little different on the road, and that vacation from being my home self feels like a great sleep after a long day. Second, that you can have both love and freedom when you fall in love with an exotic local in an exotic locale, since there is a return ticket next to the bed that you by law will eventually have to use. These sweet, sexy, epic little vacationships became part of my identity—I was The Girl with the Great International Romance Stories at dinner parties, and around the writers’ room table. And I began to need my trips like other people need religion.
                But my mom will be pleased to hear that my addiction to sexy people in sexy places really grew out of a nonsexual obsession: I love to do the thing you’re supposed to do in the place you’re supposed to do it. That means always getting the specialty of the house. That means smoking cigarettes I don’t smoke at the perfect corner café for hours at a time in Paris, and stripping naked for group hot-tubbing with people you don’t want to see naked in Big Sur. It means riding short, fuzzy horses that will throw me onto the arctic tundra in Iceland, or getting beaten with hot, wet branches by old naked women in stifling banyas in Moscow. When these moments happen, I get absurdly happy, like the kind of happy other people report experiencing during the birth of their children. And getting romanced by a Brazilian in Brazil, or a Cretan in Crete . . . this, to me, just happens to be the gold medal in the Do the Thing You’re Supposed to Do Olympics.
                I love that I am but one of millions of single girls hit- ting the road by themselves these days. A hateful little ex- boyfriend once said that a house full of cats used to be the sign of a terminally single woman, but now it’s a house full of souvenirs acquired on foreign adventures. He said it derogatorily: Look at all of this tragic overcompensating in the form of tribal masks and rain sticks. But I say that plane tickets replacing cats might be the best evidence of women’s progress as a gender. I’m damn proud of us.
                Also, since I have both a cat and a lot of foreign souvenirs, I broke up with that dude and went on a really great trip.
 
 

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What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding: A Memoir 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
ThenHeatherSaid More than 1 year ago
I'm a fan of Kristin Newman's television work, and really enjoyed this book. The chapter break down makes it a quick read, full of life lessons learned through comedic real-life situations. It's one of those books that you’ll find yourself genuinely giggling out loud while reading. Kristin’s travel escapades and hilarious stories about life’s relationships in her twenties and thirties somehow manage to be both unbelievable and totally relatable. I would recommend this book to anyone who digs today's comedy television landscape.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it, I couldn't put it down
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As someone who loves to travel I found this book very interesting!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book. Loved it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Bboopz More than 1 year ago
Impressed by the author's honesty about herself and her single state. This book describes the evolution of a single independent woman while all her friends were getting married. A funnier Eat, Pray, Love, I enjoyed (while some parts were painful to read) this book and could not put it down. Now that the author is married, I look forward to a sequel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
funny yet real
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kristin pretty much nails what it feels like to be single when everyone else is beginning to settle down.  You know you want to get there but you aren't quite ready.  Meanwhile, you start losing your best girlfriends to husbands and babies.  So what's a girl to do - hit the road for another adventure.  I think I a lot of women will relate to this book.  It's perfect  to tuck into your bag for your next trip.