Yes Please! has been around for a while and I’ve heard good things so I thought I’d pick up a copy. Actually. it was mainly motivated by the fact that I was a little bored by the book I was trying to read at the time!
Amy Poehler was a writer and actress on Saturday Night Live for ages, I know her from a brief stint on Arrested Development, and then her main role in Parks and Recreation. She was also married to Will Arnett (also from Arrested Development) and besties with Tina Fey (also from SNL and 30 Rock). The book is autobiographical but arranged more by subject than straightforwardly chronological making it more a book of ‘what I have learnt in my life’ than ‘this is what happened’.
Plus, I am forty-two, which is smack-dab in the middle. I haven’t live a full enough life to look back on, but I am too old to get by on being pithy and cute.
She talks about being pregnant and childbirth by getting her mum (mom) to write a passage about what Amy’s birth was like. When she talks about her divorce she actually describes fictional books on divorce (I Want a Divorce! See You Tomorrow!), which are quite funny. I wish that section had been longer.
There is a weird amount of unhelpful name dropping- at one point she does acknowledge that she is doing this. It’s pretty much always annoying for people to name drop, it’s weird because at one point she say ‘my husband, Will Arnett…’ which should have been picked up by an editor as poorly worded. No one says the surname of your husband when you talk about them unless they are famous and you are indicating that you have a famous husband, but she doesn’t then go to say anything about his career or fame in that sentence so it was just pointless. And all the other people she references are people I’ve never heard of and therefore it is totally lost on me.
When she talks about her time at SNL she doesn’t do a lot to explain what SNL is. I guess she is banking on the fact that most people have, at least, heard of it if not watched it. But she brags about doing a rap next to Sarah Palin on SNL as if everyone on earth is 100% familiar with that sketch. Well, I know a lot of people are but a sentence or two to put the whole thing in context wouldn’t have hurt.
Although things are explained better in later chapters, Poehler comes across as full of herself and by the end of the book I like her a lot less than I did in the beginning.
On the plus side the paper is nice and thick and glossy.