REVIEW: Dad is Fat by Jim Gaffigan
Dad is Fat
by Jim Gaffigan
In Dad is Fat, stand-up comedian Jim Gaffigan, who’s best known for his legendary riffs on Hot Pockets, bacon, manatees, and McDonald’s, expresses all the joys and horrors of life with five young children—everything from cousins (“celebrities for little kids”) to toddlers’ communication skills (“they always sound like they have traveled by horseback for hours to deliver important news”), to the eating habits of four year olds (“there is no difference between a four year old eating a taco and throwing a taco on the floor”). Reminiscent of Bill Cosby’sFatherhood, Dad is Fat is sharply observed, explosively funny, and a cry for help from a man who has realized he and his wife are outnumbered in their own home.
2 OUT OF 5 FLEURS DE LIS
Jim Gaffigan is one of my favorite stand up comedians, but unfortunately his humor does not transfer to the pages of a book very well.
I’m not sure who his intended audience is, but this book tends to fall flat no matter who it is aimed at. If you’re a parent, then Gaffigan is telling you things you already know. If you’re not a parent, then you really don’t want to hear about all the trivial complaints Jim has about his kids. If you’re a fan of his stand up shows, you’ll be disappointed because a lot of his material has been recycled within this book.
I’m also not sure if the point of this book is to complain about his kids, because that’s really all he seems to be doing. Hey, you know what would probably cause less complaining? NOT having five kids within a tiny two bedroom apartment in NYC. I’m not saying he shouldn’t have that many kids or whatever, but maybe he shouldn’t have had that many if he needs to write a book about all the grief they give him.
When Jim’s not complaining, he’s kind of on a soapbox. People always seem to be asking him if he’s done having kids, and in this book he’s taken the liberty of telling those people to stop asking. But, it doesn’t come across as funny–you can tell he’s beyond irritated, but hey, it’s just a fact that people will be asking you these questions no matter how many kids you have. People are just nosy.
I wish I would have enjoyed this book or gotten at least a few laughs out of it, but happily it was a short read…I’ll stick to Jim’s stand up from now on.