Introduction to the Memoir

 

Introduction 

The stories you are about to read are not in chronological order. This book is designed to be read as a group of standalone tales without any consideration of time. When one reads the Andy Potter books or The Catcher in the Rye or Lake Wobegon Days, the time frame is unimportant, but the moral or humor within the stories are the elements that make them memorable and identifiable to the reader.

This is a time when people need laughter. More than booze, a cigarette, or toilet paper … um …maybe not more than toilet paper. But they sure as hell need laughs.

John Wayne once said, “Going through life without being smart is difficult. Doing it without humor is a sonofabitch.” On second thought, that might’ve been from Lewis Black.

Smart folks, like Robby Yates, absorb humorous facts that make their journey a smoother ride. Essential fun facts like these: Your mom is the only one of your uncle’s sisters who isn’t your aunt. Being a nun is not hereditary. Circle geometry we learned in grade school has an actual application in real life and has taught us that a 16-inch pizza has four times the area of an 8-inch one. Even the Vikings endured many failures until they learned new facts. After fifty years of doing things wrong, the dunderheads found out it was a far more worthwhile strategy to rape and pillage, and then burn the village.

This book follows a boy, Robby Yates, growing up in post-WWII America who remembers life with humor and poignancy as he endures too many school transfers and an adult world filled with ugly confrontations, humiliations, and failures worse than the inventions of nasal floss and solar flashlights. Yearly relocations, from Maine to California and from Michigan to Florida, undermine his psychological stability. He learns that, when you go to more than twenty-six schools, fights are inevitable. But if you’re funny, you can save those traumatic uppercuts and make tough guys into friends with a single boffo phrase. And when they double up with hilarity, pound the boogers out of them.

It has been said that anyone can make you cry. Only a special person can make you laugh. A particularly good one can laugh at himself. Robby’s grandfather encouraged him with sage advice like this:

“People don’t need a lot of stupid information from talky assholes on TV. Be funny. Make ‘em laugh. Too much information gives monkeys the shits.”

Without further information, go to the first chapter and take a journey with Rob. I think you’ll find it way more fun than reading today’s newspapers or watching CNN.

Click here to read the excerpt to this book.