Summer Beach Read Memoirs: Questlove, Ed Hardy, Aisha Tyler Tell All
Though the summer temperatures will be winding down in a few weeks, Hollywood’s bookshelves continue to stay hot with celebrities’ freshly-printed memoirs. The Hollywood Reporter touches base with the (mostly first-time) authors of this season’s releases: atypical accounts of pursuing the American dream in the spotlight, served with generous amounts of both heartache and heartwarming nostalgia.
SELF-INFLICTED WOUNDS: HEARTWARMING TALES OF EPIC HUMILIATION
By Aisha Tyler
(It Books, $24.99, 256 pages)
When CBS’ The Talk wrapped its second season last August, co-host, comedienne, and Archer cartoon voice Aisha Tyler put up an email auto-responder and paused all her projects, including her “Girl on Guy” podcast that pushes guests like Chris Rock, Joe Manganiello and Seth Green to share stories of self-inflicted wounds, or “personal tragedies that happen that you can’t blame anyone else for,” says Tyler. “These people talk about their terrible, embarrassing, really boneheaded mistakes, and it was time I finally share some of mine.” Though ranging from see-through outfits to insurmountable drunkenness before the SATs, what’s Tyler’s most wince-worthy retelling? “I liked this guy and I ended up throwing up all over him — it’s scarred over, but at the time, I was such a lovelorn stupid mope.”Tyler’s second book travels from childhood through the hurdles of coming up in comedy, with each essay juxtaposing well-worn adages attributed to the likes of Thoreau, Nietzsche and Buddha with her own lesson learned from the experience — a mix of the crass and the heartwarming. “Nobody wants to be friends with the guy who comes running into a bar and goes, ‘OMG you guys, I had a presentation at work today, I got a promotion and a new office, and I’m dating this super hot girl,’” Tyler explains of owning her embarrassing missteps. “Everybody wants to punch that guy in the face! But everybody loves that guy who comes in with only one shoe on, he’s damp and his pockets are turned inside out, and he goes, ‘OMG you guys, I think I just set my car on fire.’ Everybody loves that guy! We can just laugh about it together.” Looks like her strategy pays off: she’s well-received as Drew Carey’s replacement on The CW’s newly revived and renewed Whose Line Is It Anyway? and just hosted the Young Hollywood Awards.
Being an arrogant little snot with a freshly minted Ivy degree and no money to go out and do stufflike normal people, I sat on my dumpster-rescued futon and watched a lot of comedy on this channel while eating Smartfood by the fistful. And inevitably, after each set, I thought arrogantly and snottily, “Man, that sucked. I could totally do better than that guy.” It was this kind of unfounded and breathtaking hubris that made me quirkily adorable, and also highly likely to lose a limb or get stabbed by an itinerant tattoo artist someday.