David Sedaris, humorist and author of bestsellers Naked and Me Talk Pretty One Day, is one the road again to promote his new collection of essays, Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls. While in San Francisco, Sedaris took a break from his book tour to chat with Lambda Literary. In the interview, he opens up about his relationship with his dad, which was built on frustration and misunderstanding.
“I think my dad felt that there was just no place in the world for me, that I was just such an unpopular [kid], such a nerdy mess, that if he could mold me into a different kind of person maybe I would stand a chance,” says Sedaris. “He was trying in the only way he knew how to mold me into his idea of a likeable person. I much prefer that view of my dad.”
In his new book, Sedaris was prompted to revisit his past with his father after a relative of his partner Hugh came to visit.
“This 18 year-old kid, a relative of Hugh’s, came to visit us in England last summer. And he was such a nerd, this kid. You just wanted to correct him on every possible level,” he explains. “I found myself getting so frustrated with him and I thought, Oh, that’s what my dad must’ve felt in regards to me.”
Despite being someone that he feared growing up, Sedaris found a new appreciation, a new understanding. In a letter to his father, he wrote, “I think I understand now.”
[Photo: The Atlantic]