I’m not sure I can think of anything more utterly delightful than We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves. Definitely one of my favorites of the last ten years, maybe ever. This is funny and touching and thought provoking and pitch perfect throughout. As someone who cares about animal welfare and as someone who’s married to a research scientist, I appreciate how this book illustrates that often there are no easy answers. This book has an awesome narrator who has one of my all time favorite lines. In reference to not having read the Tarzan books or seen the movies, she says, “All I knew about Tarzan was whatever was in the tap water.” Oh my God do I love this. I have some big gaps in my pop culture knowledge, and an immunity to FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out, in case my mom’s reading this) so there are a lot of things that I only know from the tap water. Walking Dead? Zombies, something really bad just happened. Game of Thrones? Medieval times, dragons, everyone gets murdered, Hodor. Law and Order? Glong glong!
For a very, very long time, I only had tap water knowledge of Star Wars. There is a lot of Star Wars in the tap water, but I never really absorbed much beyond “Luke, I am your father.” I was pretty much this guy. But now that I have kids, I decide to show an interest in the things they love, and next thing I know, I’ve seen Force Awakens six times. And while it’s still not really for me, I can at least have an answer when my son asks me if Hoth is colder than carbonite, and I’ve taken a side in the debate over Rey’s lineage. (I think she and Kylo Ren are brother and sister.) Even though it’s not my thing, I do always appreciate it when people really love something. And, you know, there is one thing about its appeal that I totally, totally, get.