Bossypants by Tina Fey

Bossypants by Tina Fey

I must confess that I am pro-Tina Fey. In fact, I find her to be funny, smart, and quite pretty.

Yeah, I said you were pretty, Tina Fey. I know that pisses you off. You coming after me, ya New York City hard ass? I heard your rants and your lectures in Bossypants about your mono-brow, your freaky big toe that curves inward, and the disturbing stories of extra large maxi pads. You exposed the great big lie that are magazine photos. Between mark up artists and Photoshop, anyone can be made to look good. Wigs, make up, and good lighting works wonders for those on television.

You aren’t fooling me. You’re pretty. Deal with it.

I’ve finished reading (technically, listening) Bossypants, so pardon me if I’m feeling a bit empowered. Blame it on Tina Fey. As you might imagine from a person who has both stumbled upon and personally created much of her success, Fey’s force of nature personality jumps on top of the reader and slaps him/her around… especially if the reader is a him.

Bossypants is part feminist manifesto, part joke book, and part auto-biography. Like her NBC sitcom, 30 Rock, much of the material is hit or miss. However, two sections alone make the book worth the read. The first is when Fey answers “Fan Mail”, except that these fan letters are actually asinine anonymous website comments from the chickenshits we all know and love. Her level of snark and cutting humor had me in tears. The second was hilarious story she recounted about her honeymoon cruise.

While bringing the funny, Fey also gives us a peek into her Sarah Palin period, bring 30 Rock to life, her work with the Second City troupe in Chicago, and her adventures at SNL.

Unfortunately, about one-third of the book she dedicates to less interesting subjects. There is a lengthy chapter about just how awesome her daddy is. Heck, even Alec Baldwin and Lorne Michaels thought he was an impressive man. It’s good material for painting where Tina Fey gets her brains and personality, but in a book where she beats on the feminist drum loudly and proudly, it felt a bit out of place. Also, there is a chapter detailing her appearance. Literally, there is a section about her fat period, her skinny period, her mid-sized period, and on and on. Peppered throughout are non-joking nonsequitors with every last detail of why people should find her unattractive. I recognize that self-deprecation plays a large role in her humor, but I couldn’t find the funny in this case. Perhaps this isn’t a failure from Tina’s writing, just more a personal taste… humor can be so subjective.

The book drifts at times. Is it a self-help book? Is it a feminist bible? Is it an auto-biography? It’s a distraction, but not enough to be much of a bother.

The best part about buying the audio version of Bossypants is that Tina narrates. Tina Fey might not win a Best Actress Oscar anytime soon, but she is one hell of a performer.

Tina Fey is pretty.

She is also a helluva writer.

Bossypants is quite entertaining.

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