Pretty much everyone around me is breeding. Getting married, buying a house, and having 2.5 children. At the age 30, my single girl status is becoming less and less socially acceptable. And yet, my biological clock is barely making a sound. I recently picked up a book that best summarized my state of mind:
“…everyone around me was engaged in a lot of engaging, marrying, and breeding while I remained resolutely terrified of doing any of it. I did want to have a family someday…it was just that “someday” never seemed to feel like “today.” I wanted love, but I also wanted freedom and adventure, and those two desires fought like angry obese sumo wrestlers in the dojo of my soul.”
These are the words of Kristin Newman, a comedy writer known for her work on That ’70s Show and How I Met Your Mother. In her book, “What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding,” Kristin shares her stories of travel, adventure, international romance, and her paralyzing fear struggle with marriage and commitment.
With every chapter in her book she chronicles a chapter in her fearless journey around the world. Somewhere between getting high in Amsterdam, falling in love with a Latin lover in Argentina, and ogling the beautiful people at posto nove on Ipanema beach, Kristin developed the mantra to “do the thing you’re supposed to do, in the place where you’re supposed to do it.”
What I liked about the book? Kristin’s book isn’t just about travel. She writes about her sex escapades, failed romances, career successes, family issues, and her love/hate relationship with being a single 30-something in a world filled with baby showers. Her memoir chronicles over 10 years of her life—a time period in which she used travel as a way to escape everything she feared in life. Kristin’s stories are inspirational to someone like me, a 30-something who is sometimes afraid to live life to its fullest.
What I didn’t like about the book? For a comedy writer, I expected Kristin to be…well…funnier. Her stories were entertaining but “laugh-out-loud” (as her book cover reviews suggest) might be a stretch. Perhaps my expectations were too high. I expected the people in her stories to be just like the characters in her TV shows. But casanova Barney Stinson and lovable dumb ass Michael Kelso never quite made an appearance. I suppose real life is never as funny as it is on TV.
- Worth reading? Yes
- Best way to read? On a plane in route to an international adventure
- What did I learn? The beautiful people hang out at posto nove on Ipanema beach. I’m headed to Rio De Janeiro this coming New Year’s Eve to see for myself