Book Review #11: Do You Mind If I Cancel? By Gary Janetti (2019)

Title: Do You Mind If I Cancel? (Things That Still Annoy Me)
Author: Gary Janetti
Published: 2019, Flatiron Books, New York
Pages: 159
Genres: Short essays, humor, celebrity memoirs
Link Here

Do You Mind If I Cancel? By Gary Janetti on top of the break room table at my workplace

Before I dive into what I thought of this book, I have to share something first. I was literally laughing out loud at work reading this book, and trying to hold my laughter in when one of my coworkers walked into the break room so they didn’t think I was a maniac laughing alone. They probably still think I’m weird. But honestly, that story sort of summarizes what I thought of this book. It was tremendously real, and literally laugh out loud funny.

I did not think I would relate to Janetti or his book (and I still feel like I don’t, for one I’m not a hilarious and talented gay man), but his stories perfectly capture how everyone thinks something is going to go, and then how it actually goes, and the awkward situational comedy that transpires. I loved reading about his adventures, and awkwardness of his 20s. We also have similar views of waiters when we were young, which was a wonderful surprise on it’s own.

“Each shift seemed to last a lifetime, encompassing all the moments that go with it. Joy, sorrow, fear, despair. Perhaps the time would have gone by faster if I had ever gotten any good at the job” p. 65, Do You Mind If I Cancel? by Gary Janetti, on being a waiter

But I can relate to the pressure of having a goal, almost like a calling, but disappointed when life doesn’t go as planned and you’re sitting there one day, only in your 20s, wondering what went wrong. Janetti’s advice and tales make sense in a time where I feel like young people are pressured to be successful, and find their niche at a young age. Also, the consequences of his stories brought on a lot of feelings, like for one how hard it is sometimes to engage with real life, and take chances. Nothing happens if you don’t take chances.

“Four years later and I am working as a bellman. I have not been paid as a writer. I have not worked as a writer. I am no closer to anything than I was that day in that office. And I am twenty-eight and I have a terrifying though: what if that was my one chance, but I didn’t recognize it and now it was too late? If I had taken that job I would surely be a writer on the show by now. I would have proven myself. I would have a career. A life. Who did I think I was?” p. 83, Do you Mind If I Cancel? by Gary Janetti

I recommend this book for sure if you’re looking for some comedic stories, I give it a 3.5 out of 5!

_Elizabeth

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