Elevate Difference

Reviews tagged humor

The Girls from Ames: A Story of Women and a Forty-Year Friendship

As I became immersed in The Girls from Ames, I started to view it as a collective memoir of eleven women who have been friends since they were young girls in Ames, Iowa. While I expected to find the book a worthwhile read, I was pleasantly surprised to find how much I could relate to in this book. I found the story of these women both touching and humorous as I read it, prompting a reflection on my own female friendships over the years.

I'll Mature When I'm Dead: Dave Barry's Amazing Tales of Adulthood

One of the back cover blurbs on my copy of I'll Mature When I'm Dead states that Dave Barry is "The funniest man in America." Now, I am not quite sure I agree with that, although Barry is quite hilarious. There is no overarching plot to his new book, and I don't think each piece is considered a short story. I guess one could call this book episodic.

Aya: The Secrets Come Out (Volume Three)

Last summer, in dire need of some pure escapism, I stumbled upon the four-volume Aya comic book series. Inspired by author Marguerite Abouet’s childhood, this series takes us back to the late 1970s on the Ivory Coast to a suburb of Abidjan, Yopougon, known affectionately as Yop City to its residents. What initially piqued my interest was finding a series taken from the point of view of Aya, a nineteen-year-old African woman—indeed a rare occurrence.

The Baby Formula

"Why shouldn't we have the chance to make our own babies, have our own children?” That's one of the first lines spoken in The Baby Formula, a delightful award-winning Canadian mockumentary that took two honors in 2009: the Audience Award at the Toronto Inside Out Lesbian & Gay Film & Video Festival and Best LGBT Film at the Nashville Film Festival.

American Thighs: The Sweet Potato Queens' Guide to Preserving Your Assets

Jill Connor Browne, the self-proclaimed Sweet Potato Queen, is fifty-five and lives in Jackson, Mississippi. Her newest book, American Thighs, is an amusing but lightweight look at aging from an older Southern woman's point of view.

September Fair: A Murder-by-Month Mystery

Librarian and small-town reporter Mira James discovers the dead body of the latest Milkfed Mary, Queen of the Dairy, while covering the Minnesota State Fair for the local newspaper. Milkfed Mary is teenaged Ashley Pederson. Mira is covering a carving of Ashley’s head in butter as part of the Queen of the Dairy ceremony when the lights go out in the Dairy building. A few moments later Mira finds Ashley on the floor of a refrigerated booth, her skin a strange shade of red. Ashley’s body is the fifth Mira has discovered in the last few months.


Based on the 1989 Ron Howard movie Parenthood, writer Jason Katims has revised the premise into a modern day, one-hour drama that explores the many facets of being a parent. The stellar cast includes Lauren Graham (Gilmore Girls), Craig T.

Foolish Words: The Most Stupid Words Ever Spoken

We have all heard them. We have all read them. We have all uttered them. They are foolish words. In her recent book, Foolish Words, Laura Ward has compiled approximately 800 quotes ranging from the humorous to utterly stupid. This is an entertaining collection of verbal blunders, as well as misquotes and misprints. The first chapter, "Brain in Neutral - Mouth in Drive," will make the reader chuckle.

Chocolate, Please: My Adventures in Food, Fat and Freaks

What is not to love about a comedian who combines the raunch of Margaret Cho with the political incorrectness of a Don Rickles, and the acerbic wit of a Dorothy Parker? Lisa Lampinelli deftly employs all of these qualities to describe a hard-fought but nonetheless victorious perspective on her own decisions and accomplishments.

Don’t Say I Didn’t Warn You: Kids, Carbs, and the Coming Hormonal Apocalypse

Sassy southern belle Anita Renfroe’s sharp and charming wit weaves together a series of essays on everything from body image, motherhood, and the holiday season in Don't Say I Didn't Warn You. The book is the kind of happy, light read you just cannot put down. Without bombarding you with a barrage of jokes like so many other books by comedians, Renfroe shares the lighter side of her world, and you laugh alongside her.

2010 Wall Calendar: Anne Taintor

“She was one cocktail away from proving his mother right” is the text accompanying a modestly dressed, yet sexily posed, 1950s woman that adorns the cover of the 2010 Wall Calendar by Anne Taintor. Why is it that these satirical sentences bring a smile to our faces? Why does it give us such pleasure to poke fun at these Leave it to Beaver prototypes? Whatever the analysis, it works.

Miss Conduct’s Mind Over Manners: Master the Slippery Rules of Modern Ethics and Etiquette

Miss Conduct is an exemplary advice columnist: quirky, direct, and practical. Her quirkiness throws her biases into the forefront, preventing any false pretense of neutrality, and allows her to emphasize a pleasant sense of humor.

In Praise of Indecency: The Leading Investigative Satirist Sounds of Hypocrisy, Censorship and Free Expression

This is the first of two books Paul Krassner put out this year and, in my opinion, the better one.

Who's to Say What's Obscene?: Politics, Culture, and Comedy in America Today

I've long been a fan of Paul Krassner's more illustrious friends like Lenny Bruce and Abbie Hoffman, but until now I'd never gotten around to reading Krassner's own work. Who's to Say What's Obscene? appears to be a collection of random essays. I say "appears to be" because for most of the book, I had no idea what was going on. The stories were interesting, but would just go from one to the next with seemingly no connection.

I'ma Be Me

In her first HBO comedy special since 2006's Sick & Tired, Wanda Sykes’ I'ma Be Me promises from the outset that she is "not holding anything back." This is a promise she works assiduously to keep throughout the show.

She Likes Girls 4

She Likes Girls 4 is a hilarious compilation of eight short films on various ways in which girls like girls. Topics center around gender, childhood innocence, homophobia, and presumptions. _Babysitting Andy _directed by Pat Mills is a humorous short about a nine-year-old brat who tortures her wheelchair-bound uncle and his partner into schooling her on the definition of fellatio.

Mean Little Deaf Queer: A Memoir

If I had to choose only one genre of book to read for the rest of my life, I would choose memoirs.


Some say the mark of a great film is that it defies our expectations. If that's the case, then Oldboy director Park Chan-wook's latest should be considered one of the best. Thirst is the story of a Catholic priest who becomes a vampire, and has thus earned the label of a horror flick, but the film itself is virtually genre-proof.

Why Is My Mother Getting A Tattoo?: And Other Questions I Wish I Never Had to Ask

Jancee Dunn’s second memoir, Why Is My Mother Getting a Tattoo?: And Other Questions I Wish I Never Had to Ask, is a laugh-out-loud funny and often touching set of anecdotes about her life; her big, quirky family; her many quirky friends; and her quirky self.

Life Goes On

Linq is a little bit like the love baby of Barney and Melissa Etheridge, and I really don’t mean that in a derogatory way. If Linq played an outdoor festival and if my partner and I had kids, we would be out having a picnic dancing on the grass with our cute gaybies singing along. Yes, I said gaybies. How can you not love a song called “Diversity Dance?” Hooray for gays! Hooray for bisexuals! It doubles the dating pool! After all, a little dose of cheesiness isn’t always bad, is it?

The Adventures of Cancer Bitch

Laying it out there with stunning realness, incorporating funny yet saddening as well as humorous but serious moments, S. L. Wisenberg presents blog entries of her journey through breast cancer discovery, surgery, and recovery in The Adventures of Cancer Bitch.

Just Like Family: Inside the Lives of Nannies, the Parents They Work for, and the Children They Love

Like Tasha Blaine, I once took a job working as a nanny. Also like the author, I thought it would be a relatively easy gig that would allow me the freedom to write while working in a nice, supportive environment.

Laughing without an Accent: Adventures of an Iranian American at Home and Abroad

Laughing without an Accent is Firoozeh Dumas’s second book, after her debut memoir Funny in Farsi. Dumas is an Iranian-American who writes about the similarities and differences in Iranian cultures through her own experiences growing up in Iran and America.

I’m Perfect, You’re Doomed: Tales from a Jehovah’s Witness Upbringing

Kyria Abrahams’ searing, if flawed, memoir about growing up in a deeply-observant family of Jehovah’s Witnesses calls to mind Karl Marx’s quip that “religion is the opiate of the masses.” Her original voice is by turns funny, whiny, clear-eyed, and churlish as she chronicles the Witness’ blind obedience to religious dogma. Abrahams’ writing is deft, even evocative, as she vividly describes the purple haze in which her community languishes.


Human beings are interested in two things. They are interested in the reality and interested in telling about it. – Gertrude Stein Reality is an olive that rolls away to elude your fork. There are ways of dealing with this. Mashing flat the olive helps. When sitting in the john, consider chess moves by the Hungarian master, Gyula Breyer. Even if you’re a guy, pedicures are nice in the struggle with reality. Pap smears too (women only), but, ladies, the smear should be fresh.

Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian

A summer blockbuster with a feminist edge? Yes, that is indeed what we find with the Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian. The film opens with Ben Stiller’s character, Larry Daly, finding himself longing to return to the New York Museum of Natural History in spite of his entrepreneurial successes. He returns just in time to save his museum pals from deep storage in Washington, DC.

The Makedown

The Makedown is marketed as a witty take on a makeover in reverse. However, this part of the storyline actually occurs in the last fourth of the novel.

Things I’ve Learned From Women Who’ve Dumped Me

I have a love/hate relationship with liberal publications, like the New York Times, that discuss progressive issues and at the same time print articles that seem to use stone age mentality to “prove” the differences between women and men.

Natalie Tran - CommunityChannel

Natalie Tran, a 22-year-old Australia vlogger, has created a small sensation on YouTube. The reigning queen of Australian YouTubers, she is a young, fresh-faced woman with self-deprecating humor who picks on the mundane snags of life that often get under our skin.

Nerdcore Rising

The disclaimer at the beginning of the Nerdcore Rising DVD reads: "This film has been modified from its original version. It has been made more awesome to fit this screen." Needless to say, I was immediately prepared to not take the film too seriously.