The Office remains one of my all-time favorite TV shows even now that it’s off the air. The first couple of seasons are the best, in my opinion, because it is so relatable. Anyone who works in a random office can nod in agreement with many of the situations, even some of the more exaggerated ones.
As an normal fangirl would, as soon as I signed up for a Twitter account I immediately started following (I believe this is the PC term for “stalking”) all of my favorite celebrities, including everyone from The Office. Over time, I realized who was really worthy of my valuable internet “following” time and I whittled down the bunch to Mindy Kaling, Jenna Fischer, and Angela Kinsey. When I heard that Mindy had written a book, well, I knew I had to read it. I’m extremely picky (read: cheap) about buying books, so I planned to either ask for it as a gift or take it out from the library. The problem with my plan to take out books from the library is that I don’t make myself a list and then I get there and forget everything I want to read.
I finally made a list on Goodreads and used the Internet to see which of my planned to-read books were actually in stock at my library before going. I ended up getting My Story by Elizabeth Smart, The Timekeeper by Mitch Albom, There’s No Place Like Here by Cecelia Ahern, and Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling. (As an aside, I was so excited with my proper planning that I showed my haul to my husband when I got home. He looked at the Cecelia Ahern book and said, “You read that already.” I read the jacket copy and it did sound somewhat familiar, but I still denied it. I told him I took it out but never read it. He was sure I had. I started flipping through the pages and sure enough, I have already read this book and had completely forgotten.)
Anyway. As anyone who watches The Office or The Mindy Project or follows Kaling online knows, she is hilarious. She comes off as totally approachable, like you could be friends with her. And unlike a lot of Hollywood women, she eats and isn’t afraid to make fun of herself. I love it. Her book is a collection of essays about sometimes random topics (boys that were mean to her when she was younger, her favorite comedies, why she doesn’t understand one night stands), but it works. It almost reads like a collection of blog entries as it chronicles her life from elementary school through college and first jobs to The Office and into her personal life. I literally laughed out loud while reading this, and at one point last night while the hubby was sleeping soundly next to me, I had a series of those quiet convulsing laughs that one has when trying to stifle the chuckles.
Kaling is a wonderful writer who is funny, engaging, and dangerously down to earth. You would never know she is a celebrity because she never once throws it in your face or name drops or mentions it other than when absolutely necessary to explain a point. Like when she talks about working at SNL, you’re all impressed with how cool and famous she is, but then she brings you back down when she reminds you that the night she went out with Amy Poehler and everyone else, she forgot to bring cash and had to borrow $20 from another writer whom she barely knew.
If you’re looking for an easy weekend read (she tells you herself that the book is a two-day read, max) then I highly suggest adding this one to your to-read list next time you go to the library. I’ll make sure to take it off of mine so I don’t accidentally take it out again.