SJfromSJ’s #CBR5 Review #6: Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling

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I realize I’m late to the party, but that’s not new. I loved this book. It spoke to me. It’s like my Southeast Asian Republican life doppleganger wrote this book. I’m actually going to start using it as a litmus test for a future husband. If he does not find Mindy attractive and endearing in this book, it probably won’t work out because what she wrote is basically what goes through my brain always.

I’m not an avid fan of The Office, but I follow Kaling on Twitter because she’s funny and, as I said, speaks to me as a 25-year-old female. She had released the essay “Best Friends Rights and Responsibilities” as a preview, and that excerpt sealed the deal for me. I’m not a fan of compilations of essays, mostly because they tend not to have a linear structure, but her’s did, so it was greatly enjoyable for me. Also, I guess you can’t really call most of them “essays”, but they’re not “chapters” either. I guess they’re vignettes? Whatever, this is my review, I’m calling them essays.

Other essays that spoke to me: “Non-Traumatic Things That Have Made Me Cry” (I could actually write an entire autobiography on this subject) and “When You’re Not Skinny, This Is What People Want You to Wear”. I wanted to say that the sections those two essays came from were the most poignant parts of the book for me, but I truly identified fully with something in all five major sections of the book.

What I especially appreciated was how candid she was about her failures and naive cockiness. She owns up to her missteps and honestly learns something from the experience. She also doesn’t dwell on injustices against her because clearly she did something right and is successful and is totally self-aware.

I have been mulling on my own memoirs in the event that I do something worth having them published, but she has inspired me to just start writing them down — maybe blogging them? — just as a fun exercise in writing and humor. I’ve been looking for a hobby, so why not?

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