The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo

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Amy Schumer’s first book The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo is such a delight. I brought it along with me to work one Monday and spent two days reading and thoroughly enjoying it. In fact I had to keep setting it down because I was laughing too hard. Too hard for someone sitting in a cubicle surrounded by hundreds of other people in cubicles doing work that really isn’t that funny.

The first time I saw Amy Schumer was on that episode of Kaitlin Bristowe’s season of The Bachelorette, and then in her movie Trainwreck. Other than snippets about her in the news that made me already like her, I really knew nothing about her. So I was interested to learn a little more about her and her life in this book.

The stories she shares about her childhood and family, being a “New Money” person, the struggles involved in trying to be a stand up comedian, and virtually everything about her life (she shares hilarious excerpts from her diary at age thirteen, eighteen, and when she was in her early twenties, with footnotes for context) are entertaining, thoughtful, sometimes sad, but undoubtedly funny as she shares all these events through her point of view.

I especially loved her thoughts on when you’re officially a woman:

“There are lots of ‘firsts’…little flashpoints here and there when you’re unknowingly becoming a women. And it’s not the clichéd shit, like when you have your first kiss or drive your first car. You become a woman the first time you stand up for yourself when they get your order wrong at a diner, or when you first realize your parents are full of shit. You become a woman the first time you get fitted for a bra and realize you’ve been wearing a very wrong size your whole fucking life, the first time you lie and make yourself look bad so a fried you love can look better.”

I was so surprised by how much I loved this book and how down to earth and smart Amy Schumer really is. Either that or she did an amazing job of making it look like she is! As funny as this book is, it’s full of a lot of really sad memories related to her family, her parents, and one particularly bad, abusive, relationship was in. But she has made herself into a really strong person (in part because she was always trying to shield her little sister Kim from the perils of reality, which she would do by making her laugh) and you come away from this book under the assumption that should could handle anything life throws at her, because she pretty much already has.

“I look at the saddest things in life and laugh at how awful they are, because they are hilarious and it’s all you can do with moments that are painful.”

I couldn’t agree more with that statement and I find that people who share these sentiments are the best kinds of people.

 

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