Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)

Mindy Kaling has lived many lives: the obedient child of immigrant professionals, a timid chubster afraid of her own bike, a Ben Affleck–impersonating Off-Broadway performer and playwright, and, finally, a comedy writer and actress prone to starting fights with her friends and coworkers with the sentence “Can I just say one last thing about this, and then I swear I’ll shut...

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Title:Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)
Author:Mindy Kaling
Rating:
ISBN:0307886263
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:222 pages

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) Reviews

  • traci
    Nov 07, 2011

    mindy kaling - writer, star of the office - suffers from never having cancer or living in iran for any part of her life. which simply means this: it's hard to write a memoir that lasts more than 70 pages. so they call it a book of essays, which is fine, and she does a good job with most of them. but then she's only up to 150 pages and she's fucked. so she goes to her phone and flips through her photos and thinks, hey, i could just write about these, and other bullshit like it, to satisfy a respe

    mindy kaling - writer, star of the office - suffers from never having cancer or living in iran for any part of her life. which simply means this: it's hard to write a memoir that lasts more than 70 pages. so they call it a book of essays, which is fine, and she does a good job with most of them. but then she's only up to 150 pages and she's fucked. so she goes to her phone and flips through her photos and thinks, hey, i could just write about these, and other bullshit like it, to satisfy a respectable book length. and so she does.

    that said, this book has really, really funny parts, and the first half is perfect in every way. but then it feels rushed, which it is, to get it out before the holiday season.

    that said, i did finish it in like, three days, so if you're looking for a sense of accomplishment, this book is for you.

  • V. Briceland
    Nov 13, 2011

    A quick warning about an otherwise good book: the last third of

    writer Kaling's memoir is a scattershot, hit-or-miss affair. With short essays like "Why Do Men Put on Their Shoes So Slowly?" and "In Defense of Chest Hair", which graze their topics no more deeply than the titles suggest, Kaling almost sounds like she's half-heartedly trying out for the late and perpetually cranky Andy Rooney's vacated gig on

    .

    It's a shame, because the first two-thirds of Kaling's effort is an

    A quick warning about an otherwise good book: the last third of

    writer Kaling's memoir is a scattershot, hit-or-miss affair. With short essays like "Why Do Men Put on Their Shoes So Slowly?" and "In Defense of Chest Hair", which graze their topics no more deeply than the titles suggest, Kaling almost sounds like she's half-heartedly trying out for the late and perpetually cranky Andy Rooney's vacated gig on

    .

    It's a shame, because the first two-thirds of Kaling's effort is an engaging memoir chronicling a thoroughly conventional upbringing and an unlikely rise to notoriety and television scripting fame. Her circuitous route to her career is both affable and a fun read—which makes it all the more disappointing that once she reaches the heights at NBC, the rest of the book sputters out when it has nowhere to go.

    It seems unfairly reductive that the memoir will inevitably undergo comparisons with her same-network compatriot Tiny Fey's

    . I found Kaling's effort the more charming of the two, and the less labored.

  • Catie
    Dec 13, 2011

    There’s a passage in this book in which Mindy Kaling laments that she will never be the kind of comedian who can get away with really raunchy humor or jokes about race. (She cites Sarah Silverman and Dave Chappelle as examples.) But, here is what she

    get away with: writing a book chock-full of lists and stories all about how she’s basically (in her words) a “vain flake” and still coming across as a kind, intelligent woman and an excellent best friend.

    I kind of wish that Mindy Kaling were my

    There’s a passage in this book in which Mindy Kaling laments that she will never be the kind of comedian who can get away with really raunchy humor or jokes about race. (She cites Sarah Silverman and Dave Chappelle as examples.) But, here is what she

    get away with: writing a book chock-full of lists and stories all about how she’s basically (in her words) a “vain flake” and still coming across as a kind, intelligent woman and an excellent best friend.

    I kind of wish that Mindy Kaling were my best friend. She’d be the kind of friend who would call up on a Saturday night, and when you sheepishly admitted that you really didn’t feel like going out, would show up at your door wearing pj’s and laden down with fancy chocolates and champagne. Then she would plop down on your couch and make absolutely no complaints when you wanted to watch a Say Yes to the Dress marathon. She’s the kind of friend who would never shame you for loving (just as a few completely out-there random examples which have absolutely nothing at all to do with me) When Harry Met Sally (like, to the point where

    you can recite every single line), or Sixteen and Pregnant, or US Weekly, or cheddar cheese pretzels, or house music.

    One of my favorite chapters in this book is entitled “Best Friend Rights and Responsibilities” and outlines a few of Mindy Kaling’s rules for BFF-dom:

    Mindy and I (I’m just going to go ahead and call her Mindy…because that’s what future best friends do) are also about the same age, and there is some excellent 90’s

    in here. In particular, I loved her list of favorite comedy moments (Chris Farley as Matt Foley = more evidence that we should be best friends) and her list of remakes that she’d like to take a crack at. An all-girl remake of Ghostbusters?!! I would totally go and see that, especially if they cast female comedians in all the main roles.

    I didn’t enjoy the pieces about dieting and dating/commitment quite as much but overall I really had a fun time with this book. This is a humorous memoir that also belongs alongside the fluffy/frothy books and I think that’s exactly what my little Min was really going for. Well done! (Call me later!)

    Mariah Carey –

    I may or may not love Mariah Carey with all my heart. And I may or may not have seen Glitter more than once, possibly not even to make fun of it.

  • Jessi
    Dec 24, 2011

    I

    this book, Mindy is just a funny gal who is pretty in check with reality. I have trouble writing a review for a book I love. I feel I just wont do it justice. Mindy makes hilarious observations in numerous essays that fill this joy of a book. Instead of trying to articulate what this is and what I find funny I thought I would grab some random quotes as a recommendation.

    “I’m the kind of person who would rather get my hopes up really high and watch them

    I

    this book, Mindy is just a funny gal who is pretty in check with reality. I have trouble writing a review for a book I love. I feel I just wont do it justice. Mindy makes hilarious observations in numerous essays that fill this joy of a book. Instead of trying to articulate what this is and what I find funny I thought I would grab some random quotes as a recommendation.

    “I’m the kind of person who would rather get my hopes up really high and watch them get dashed to pieces rather than wisely keep my expectations at bay and hope they are exceeded. This quality has made me a needy and theatrical friend, but has given me a spectacularly dramatic emotional life.”

    “After all these years with friends who are five ten or taller, I have come to carry myself with the confidence of a tall person. It’s all in the head. It works out.”

    “ The chorus of “Jack and Diane” is: Oh yeah, life goes on, long after the thrill of living is gone.

    Are you kidding me? The thrill of living was high school? Come on, Mr. Cougar Mellancamp. Get a life."

    “I guess I find “Jack and Diane” a little disgusting…I wish there was a song called “Nguyen and Ari,” a little ditty about a hardworking Vietnamese girl who helps her parents with the franchised Holiday Inn they run and does homework in the lobby, and Ari, a hardworking Jewish boy who does volunteer work at his grandmother’s old-age home, and they meet after school at the Princeton Review. They help each other study for the SATs and different AP courses, and then after months of studying, and mountains of flashcards, they kiss chastely upon hearing the news that they both got into their top college choices.”

    “They say the best revenge is living well. I say it’s acid in the face — who will love them now?”

    "There is no sunrise so beautiful that it is worth waking me up to see it.”

    I realize now I might write out her whole book, but she is awesome and this book is soooo much fun!

    So final thoughts

  • Nicole
    Jan 11, 2012

    Ok, I officially have a girl crush on

    . She is just so cool. I love the fact that she is completely honest about all her failings and even embraces them. This would definitely be the type of person I would want to be friends with. This book was extremely funny and a light, easy read. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who wants a good laugh. I especially loved her list for alternate titles to the book (The Girl with No Tattoo, Harry Potter Secret Book #8... hilarious).

    By far m

    Ok, I officially have a girl crush on

    . She is just so cool. I love the fact that she is completely honest about all her failings and even embraces them. This would definitely be the type of person I would want to be friends with. This book was extremely funny and a light, easy read. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who wants a good laugh. I especially loved her list for alternate titles to the book (The Girl with No Tattoo, Harry Potter Secret Book #8... hilarious).

    By far my absolute favorite part of this book, however, was when she talks about one night stands and how she can never have them, not because they are sleazy, but because she is afraid of getting murdered. This so reminds me of myself. When my boyfriend, Keith, and I were dating for about 5 or 6 months, we decided to go on a trip to Oklahoma together for the weekend (to see a Linkin Park concert, definitely not because we thought Oklahoma was cool...although we kind of enjoyed it). As we are leaving town, I'm thinking to myself: what if this guy is a serial killer and this is his thing. He finds girls, dates them for 5 or 6 months, plans a trip out of state with them to "see a concert" and murders them? What if he murders me? I don't want to be buried in Oklahoma!!! So, I kind of freaked out a little bit and immediately texted everyone in my phone to tell them where I was going and that if they didn't hear back from me by Sunday it was because Keith had murdered me and left my body in Oklahoma. I know it seems kind of paranoid, but you know, one day, I'm going to get murdered and dumped in Oklahoma and all my friends and family will not only know who did it, but where my body is. I'm just saying,

    is a smart girl.

  • Shannon Lee
    Apr 06, 2012

    Audiobooks can be dangerous. During a recent road trip in which I listened to this audiobook, I had plenty of time to consider the pros and cons of vehicular suicide. Pro: I would be relieved of Mindy Kaling's screechy voice and vacuous musings forever. Con: I would never again be able to eat cheese. My instinct for survival prevailed. Barely. I suffered through this book in its entirety, so that I would be able to write a justifiably flaming review.

    Ms. Kaling's book follows a painfully predicta

    Audiobooks can be dangerous. During a recent road trip in which I listened to this audiobook, I had plenty of time to consider the pros and cons of vehicular suicide. Pro: I would be relieved of Mindy Kaling's screechy voice and vacuous musings forever. Con: I would never again be able to eat cheese. My instinct for survival prevailed. Barely. I suffered through this book in its entirety, so that I would be able to write a justifiably flaming review.

    Ms. Kaling's book follows a painfully predictable formula: (1) complain about being an overweight child, but revel in how you are now a famous and wealthy person, while your childhood bullies languish in obscurity with children born out of wedlock. (2) Seamlessly transition to obligatory "I was trying to make it in NYC and boy was I broke!" tales. (3) Describe how Hollywood is a strange place and attempt to downplay your new found fame by making yourself out to be the anti-Hollywood. At this point, Ms. Kaling should have let well enough alone, but she persists. What follows is a number of lists, the most painful of which includes a play-by-play of Will Ferrell movie moments, and a series of musings on how men are different from women. When she began her chapter describing how "men tie their shoes slowly" I veered towards a tree. Thankfully, it was a brief chapter.

    Sitcom writer Ms. Kaling may be. Compelling author she is not. Shame on her editors for green-lighting this piece of fluff and cluttering up the bookshelves and minds of unassuming readers. Shame on her audiobook supervisors for not correcting her when she mispronounced the name "Nguyen." Shame on me for subjecting myself to 4 hours of this inane nonsense masquerading as humor instead of turning it off. But my, how therapeutic writing this review has been. Almost as therapeutic as laughing is said to be.

  • Ariel
    Jul 13, 2014

    This was exactly what it wanted to be. It felt like sitting in an LA coffee shop and chatting with Mindy for a few hours, hearing a bunch of funny anecdotes, and getting to know her a little better.

    What did I like? I liked the conversational tone, the funny stories, the pictures, learning about her climb to becoming a comedy writer, some insightful moments, the emphasis on family, her love of comedy and creation, and her all round positive and "be a good person" attitude.

    What didn't I like? The

    This was exactly what it wanted to be. It felt like sitting in an LA coffee shop and chatting with Mindy for a few hours, hearing a bunch of funny anecdotes, and getting to know her a little better.

    What did I like? I liked the conversational tone, the funny stories, the pictures, learning about her climb to becoming a comedy writer, some insightful moments, the emphasis on family, her love of comedy and creation, and her all round positive and "be a good person" attitude.

    What didn't I like? The conversational tone could sometimes be

    conversational, and so it sometimes felt too casual and more like a blog post or super long tweet rather than a book. Other than a few insightful moments, I didn't feel enough powerful moments. And that's okay, I don't think this book was trying to achieve that, but I like themes and messages and I didn't feel like any strong stances were really taken about anything.

    It was lovely, I flew through it in a few hours, and right afterwards downloaded Season 3 of the Mindy Project because this book really made me like her more, and really understand her motives and love for comedy!

  • Khadidja
    Feb 06, 2016

    i love Mindy , i love comedy , i love laughing , i love reading , i love laughing while reading ! This Audiobook was totally worth my time :D she is amazing and funny , Especially her high school bullying stories. i love how she can make a terrible thing so funny.

  • Raeleen Lemay
    Oct 07, 2016

    This was such a joy to listen to! I definitely recommend the audiobook.

  • Natalie
    Dec 28, 2016

    I made the mistake of thinking I would read only one essay of this book before going to bed... I stayed up till 3am to finish the whole thing in one sitting. It's been so long since this has happened, especially going into it not even expecting to finish one essay. But Kaling has one of the most conversational, delightful and funniest voices in writing. It's nearly impossible to put down

    This book was simply fun, and I unexpectedly learned a lot about various

    I made the mistake of thinking I would read only one essay of this book before going to bed... I stayed up till 3am to finish the whole thing in one sitting. It's been so long since this has happened, especially going into it not even expecting to finish one essay. But Kaling has one of the most conversational, delightful and funniest voices in writing. It's nearly impossible to put down

    This book was simply fun, and I unexpectedly learned a lot about various topics such as: female friendships (the essay about Mindy befriending Mavis was one of my favorites), health insurance (& how much Kaling loves it),

    (& how Rainn Wilson’s so horrible), Irish exits, “and a healthy dose of unfair situations that now seem funny in retrospect, unfair situations that I still don’t think are funny, Hollywood, heartache, and my childhood.”

    And since we're already on topic, Mindy Kaling writing about her childhood and coming-of-age was one of the funniest and relatable things I've read as of late. Which is why the title essay was one my favorites:

    Reason #1 why Mavis is one the kindest souls:

    When Mindy first introduced her childhood friend in this book, I was worried that Mavis would only appear this one time, but I’m glad they became good friends.

    #truth. I really loved their friendship and was even genuinely upset when they lost contact in college.

    But thankfully Kaling mentioned

    that they saw one another again in 2002.

    I laughed out loud multiple times during this, but particularly when she talked about babysitting for some rich parents and eating a lot of their kid-friendly food:

    This was the essay I’d been waiting for!!! And I was not disappointed, especially when she made an actual list of what Kelly and her have in common:

    Also, her fights with Greg Daniels had me cackling.

    That’s one of my favorite

    . I still can’t believe she was against it.

    Also, this:

    (I actually love this.)

    This essay... oh man, it was 1am when I started it, and I thought (and still think) that Kaling might actually be psychic... Because this is practically the script for Ghostbusters that came out in 2016:

    #illuminaticonfirmed

    Last, but obviously not least, is this short but hilariously relatable piece on Kaling's writing process and being productive.

    This really reminded me of

    about this exact subject… One of the funniest comedic bits I've rewatched about ten times (or more).

    But real talk, I was really enjoying my time spent reading this book. Kaling had me laughing out loud in the middle of night, which I will always appreciate. But, as much as I want to, I can't ignore the fact that I despised it when this book reached a part called “THE BEST DISTRACTION IN THE WORLD: ROMANCE AND GUYS.” I was not into it at all. I have little to no interest in someone dictating for nearly 50 pages what guys, especially Jewish guys (I nearly put the book down after that), or even married people should or shouldn't do. So I started skimming the essays after I reached that part. I also found that the following parts had lost almost all of Kaling's humor that I found so damn charming in the first part (I mean, I stayed up till 3am for it).

    So in order to recover my love, I'll just try to forget that those parts were included in this book, and focus instead on all that I loved and mentioned beforehand in my review. And so I'm more than willing to pick up her next book,

    .