Hitchins, Shawn. “A Brief History of Oversharing: One Ginger’s Anthology of Humiliation”, ECW, 2017.
Irreverent Fun Essays
Comedian Shawn Hitchins explores his irreverent nature in this debut collection of essays. He writes about his younger self, the effeminate ginger-haired kid with a competitive streak. He shares the ups and downs of being a sperm donor to a lesbian couple, his love for actress Shelley Long, his hatred of musical theatre, and the he summer spent in Provincetown working as a drag queen. Nothing is sacred here and he takes on his mother who planned the murder of the family cat, his difficult relationship with his father, becoming an unintentional spokesperson for all redheads, and his first breakup.
Hitchins is “blunt, awkward, emotional and ribald and he totally humiliates himself as we laugh. If you are in need of a laugh, here is where to find one.
We see that is quite okay to laugh at sacred cows and there is something quite beautiful in the bawdiness we read here. Hitchins relies on his emotions and his “dirty mind” to get his ideas across and we eat them up. He gives us a play-by-play on masturbation (something we usually do not discuss with others and while we are shocked at first, by the time it is over, we have laughed ourselves silly. Maybe he does “overshare” but that is fine with me.
If everyone wrote a book like this, I would be quite a jolly reviewer. Reading this made me feel that the air suddenly freshened all around me and I cannot recommend it highly enough. After all, if we cannot laugh at ourselves, why is it that we can laugh at others?