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The Totally Unscientific Study of the Search for Human Happiness (urspr publ 2017; utgåvan 2017)

av Paula Poundstone (Författare)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
16047128,930 (3.64)9
"A remarkable journey. I laughed. I cried. I got another cat."  --Lily Tomlin "Paula Poundstone is the funniest human being I have ever known." --Peter Sagal, host of Wait Wait . . . Don't Tell Me! and author of The Book of Vice "Is there a secret to happiness?" asks comedian Paula Poundstone. "I don't know how or why anyone would keep it a secret. It seems rather cruel, really . . . Where could  it be? Is it deceptively simple? Does it melt at a certain temperature? Can you buy it? Must you suffer for it before or after?" In her wildly and wisely observed book, the comedy legend takes on that most inalienable of rights--the pursuit of happiness. Offering herself up as a human guinea pig in a series of thoroughly unscientific experiments, Poundstone tries out a different get-happy hypothesis in each chapter of her data-driven search. She gets in shape with taekwondo. She drives fast behind the wheel of a Lamborghini. She communes with nature while camping with her daughter, and commits to getting her house organized (twice!). Swing dancing? Meditation? Volunteering? Does any of it bring her happiness? You may be laughing too hard to care.   The Totally Unscientific Study of the Search for Human Happiness is both a story of jumping into new experiences with both feet and a surprisingly poignant tale of a single working mother of three children (not to mention dozens of cats, a dog, a bearded dragon lizard, a lop-eared bunny, and one ant left from her ant farm) who is just trying to keep smiling while living a busy life. The queen of the skepticism-fueled rant, Paula Poundstone stands alone in her talent for bursting bubbles and slaying sacred cows. Like George Carlin, Steve Martin, and David Sedaris, she is a master of her craft, and her comedic brilliance is served up in abundance in this book. As author and humorist Roy Blount Jr. notes, "Paula Poundstone deserves to be happy. Nobody deserves to be this funny."  … (mer)
Medlem:jms001
Titel:The Totally Unscientific Study of the Search for Human Happiness
Författare:Paula Poundstone (Författare)
Info:Algonquin Books (2017), 288 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
Betyg:***
Taggar:Ingen/inga

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The Totally Unscientific Study of the Search for Human Happiness av Paula Poundstone (2017)

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» Se även 9 omnämnanden

Visa 1-5 av 49 (nästa | visa alla)
In this book, comedian Paula Poundstone goes on a search for happiness, testing various ideas she has heard will bring happiness (e.g., exercise, being organized, giving a hug, helping others, etc.). She presents all of this is pseudo-scientific way with a hypothesis, field notes, observations, etc.

However, each one of these theories is just a way in to talk about various things in her life, such as being a single parent, dealing with her kids, why she has so many pets, her obsessive need to talk, her time on NPR, etc. That is not a criticism; in fact, being a fan of Poundstone's podcast, some of these things were familiar items she's talked about before and she is always humorous when discussing her thoughts. When I first started this book actually, I felt it wasn't as funny as the madcap format of her podcast; however, once I got into the rhythm of this book, I quite enjoyed it as well.

The audiobook is read by Poundstone herself and features some added in extras, such as music and effects. All and all, this makes for an entertaining read. ( )
  sweetiegherkin | Mar 20, 2020 |
Paula Poundstone has a memorable voice, so when I selected this audiobook, I was quite thrilled that she also narrates it. It made it very enjoyable. Besides that, her experiments in happiness had me giggling out loud many times. I did not know anything about her personal life, but I could see my kids in the anecdotes she told. Her kids are a hoot and act like normal kids everywhere, especially when it comes to the way they react to their mom. She is amazing in taking a normal life event and telling it in such a witty way that will have you laughing. She is also very good at self-deprecating humour. She does a great job of getting the listener to laugh at some of her simple mistakes and bigger gaffs without making it seem that you are laughing at her. I enjoyed seeing how many "Heps of Happiness" she received from each of her endeavours. I think the one I laughed at the most was the Lamborghini experiment. It was not a long book, only about 7.5 hours but I would have listened to more, I liked it a lot. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys comedy, especially if you like Paula Poundstone. ( )
  Carlathelibrarian | Feb 5, 2019 |
~Meh.

The cover blurbs promised this book would be so funny that I might lose control of major bodily functions. They lied.

The book contains mildly amusing tales of Poundstone's exploits through exercise, meditation, getting organized, and other attempts to "find happiness", with considerable side trips through her relationships with her children and frequent mentions of her pets. There are a few clever one-liners, but mostly I found myself feeling that this is a deeply unhappy person. ( )
  LyndaInOregon | Dec 14, 2018 |
I love Paula Poundstone's comedic voice. Not only is she funny, she is genuinely moving. Both those traits are in this book of autobiographical experiments, which is both fun and slightly plaintive in its lament for the shortness of life and our inability to translate hard-won life experience into a real theory of living. I heard her wonderful voice in her writing and was happy to be taken along for the ride as she explored experiments in living both logical and absurd. I couldn't help but unrealistically hope that she would find an simple, easy, logical theory of happiness, but (spoiler alert!) nothing is an uncomplicated as it seems.

If only she could somehow have magically incorporated interrogating an audience member into the book, it would have been an perfect Paula Poundstone experience. I do highly recommend it. Read it when you sincerely want to think about how to make your life happier, but you also want a funny, lighthearted friend to talk you through it, just in case things get weird. ( )
  saraswati27 | Sep 15, 2018 |
Couldn't have asked for a better audio book to have with me on an busy road trip with my daughter, son-in-law, and two grandchildren. With very little time and opportunity to pick up a book, listening to Paula Pounstone give her take on the pursuit of happiness amidst the chaos only children can inflict made my moments of alone time happy. ( )
  Christina_E_Mitchell | Aug 1, 2018 |
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"A remarkable journey. I laughed. I cried. I got another cat."  --Lily Tomlin "Paula Poundstone is the funniest human being I have ever known." --Peter Sagal, host of Wait Wait . . . Don't Tell Me! and author of The Book of Vice "Is there a secret to happiness?" asks comedian Paula Poundstone. "I don't know how or why anyone would keep it a secret. It seems rather cruel, really . . . Where could  it be? Is it deceptively simple? Does it melt at a certain temperature? Can you buy it? Must you suffer for it before or after?" In her wildly and wisely observed book, the comedy legend takes on that most inalienable of rights--the pursuit of happiness. Offering herself up as a human guinea pig in a series of thoroughly unscientific experiments, Poundstone tries out a different get-happy hypothesis in each chapter of her data-driven search. She gets in shape with taekwondo. She drives fast behind the wheel of a Lamborghini. She communes with nature while camping with her daughter, and commits to getting her house organized (twice!). Swing dancing? Meditation? Volunteering? Does any of it bring her happiness? You may be laughing too hard to care.   The Totally Unscientific Study of the Search for Human Happiness is both a story of jumping into new experiences with both feet and a surprisingly poignant tale of a single working mother of three children (not to mention dozens of cats, a dog, a bearded dragon lizard, a lop-eared bunny, and one ant left from her ant farm) who is just trying to keep smiling while living a busy life. The queen of the skepticism-fueled rant, Paula Poundstone stands alone in her talent for bursting bubbles and slaying sacred cows. Like George Carlin, Steve Martin, and David Sedaris, she is a master of her craft, and her comedic brilliance is served up in abundance in this book. As author and humorist Roy Blount Jr. notes, "Paula Poundstone deserves to be happy. Nobody deserves to be this funny."  

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