Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Two Memoirs by Augusten Burroughs

I won’t pretend, not even for a minute, that I had a childhood anything like that of
Augusten Burroughs. He one-upped me, for sure! I could, however, relate to him on many levels. I suppose many of us do it. We hide our pain and suffering behind a crazy mask of outrageous humor, or disappear into a fantasy world inside ourselves and, if only for a little while, it works.
Running with Scissors was a raunchy joy ride through the salad days of the deliciously amazing writer, Augusten Burroughs. I really did laugh out loud throughout the book, although I held the pages as closely together as I could and still read the words (so my neighbors on the train couldn’t see the naughtiness I was finding so savory)! I was repulsed and delighted for 300 full pages ... and then it was over.
And I was sad.
I missed him! I wanted to know more! What happened?! I just couldn’t stand the thought of leaving it like that, so I hurried into the store on my way to work and purchased Dry.

We lost a few years between adolescence and adulthood, but it was rather easy to fill in the blanks. As one would expect, after having grown up the way he did, Augusten became an addict. Dry follows his unsteady journey into sobriety. The humor is still there, although it is far less over-the-top and the story is actually extremely sad. I appreciated the varied relationships in his life and while Augusten chose to publish what the rest of us just sweep under the rug, I won’t tell you which parts I found myself relating to. I finished it just moments ago with many tears and a dab of bittersweetness and ... that familiar yearning for more!

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