Wednesday, 14 December 2011
Devouring Books: Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself by Alan Alda
Wait, I actually have to write a review? Using more words than just meh? (Actually, I technically don't. No one pays me for this shit. But I'm going to anyway, haha!) I really wanted to like Things I Overheard While Talking To Myself, because I had it out of the library for about a zillion years (since September, I think... September a ZILLION YEARS ago) until I decided enough was enough, and issued myself an ultimatum- no more renewals, it's now or never, all that kind of stuff.
And then it was so... lacking! I read Never Have Your Dog Stuffed earlier this year, and I thought it was great- Alda was able to look back on his life candidly and with a great sense of humour (obviously!) and just generally has a really good attitude about everything. In this book, while that attitude still prevails, I was still kind of like 'mleuuuurgh I'm borrrrrred', the whole way through.
To be honest, it's not the book's fault, or even Alan Alda's fault- it's me, not them. What I didn't realise when I started reading it was that Things I Overheard While Taking To Myself is basically a book of speeches (which, now I think about it, is totally what the title implies) that Alda has made throughout his life- at graduation ceremonies, funerals, to distinguished psychiatrists- all that kind of thing. And I am so not a fan of reading speeches, because that really goes against the point of speeches, you know? To be fair to Alda (which I always want to do!) the bits where he explains why he was giving each speech (like when he gave a speech to graduating medical students, literally because he played a doctor on TV, to which we all, including Alda himself, go, 'huh?!') were really well written, and I'm pretty positive that the speeches were awesome when he delivered them, I just CAN'T READ SPEECHES. With my eyes and stuff, it's just TOO HARD! (I also can't really do speeches in front of audiences and things. But that's a whole other issue).
So basically, a combination of my dislike of speeches that aren't being spoken, rushing through it to get it back to the library, and a general lack of interest means that this book didn't really stand a chance with me. Alda, I still love you, but I just can't read your damn speeches. I'm sorry. I guess I should have got the audiobook...