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Official Book Club Selection

Cover of Official Book Club Selection

Official Book Club Selection

A Memoir According to Kathy Griffin
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A Conversation with Kathy Griffin:
Q: State your name and profession.
KG: My name is Kathy Griffin, and I am a teller of d**k jokes. And a plumber.
Q: This is your first book. Had you ever considered writing anything before? A novel? Or a work of historical scholarship? Or a children's story?
KG: I had not considered it, because I'd always been told by the nuns at St. Bernadine's that my cursive was poor. A children' s story is an interesting idea. How's this for a title: "Waterboarding Pre-Teens: The Debate is Back On." I have a political side as well.
Q: You seem fairly obsessed with Oprah. Is this something you'll ever outgrow?
KG: I will never outgrow my obsession with Oprah. Just as she will never outgrow her cardigan sweaters. Oops, she already has. Now look, that sounds like a dig, but it's not. It's called a struggle, and I'm on it with her. I support her. (Not as much as she needs those underwire bras to support her, because she's got some serious ropes and pulleys going on there.) The point is, I worship her, and fear her at the same time. And believe me, that' s how she wants it. Don't be fooled.
Q: Did I miss something? Where's Celine Dion in this book?
KG: I didn't write about Celine Dion, only because of my fear of her husband Rene Angelil. I have an unfounded but constant fear that he could be in the French-Canadian mafia. Or have French-Canadian mafia ties, and by ties I don't mean les cravats. And I fear that I may be abducted, whisked away and held prisoner at a charming little brasserie in Montreal, forced to eat multiple Croque Monsieur sandwiches until I confess to knowing the lyrics to every single one of her songs.
Q: What do you think gays should take away from reading this book?
KG: I think the gays should be happy with this book. It talks a lot about being who you are, and I certainly mention a lot of gay people. I would say it definitely has strong gay themes, and the gay community should know that frankly it has been a moral struggle for me to even acknowledge the heterosexual community in this book at all. But I am slowly reaching out an olive branch to the heterosexual community, even though I believe everything they do goes against the teachings of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But I'm trying not to judge them.
Q: Describe your ideal, make-a-wish day of personal experiences with bats**t celebrities.
KG: Well, it would start with some sort of a fit in the hair-and-makeup trailer on a set. I heard a story that when Sharon Stone was working on "Casino," she got into such a fight with her hairdresser, that after he spent four hours doing this beautiful bouffant hairdo for her, she got up and walked in the sink and put her head underwater. I have no idea if that's true, but I hope it is, cause that's some awesome s**t I would love to see. Then it would go right to lunch, where I could witness an eating disorder. Maybe a Lohan is purging in a bush somewhere with her finger down her throat. Or perhaps there's an Olsen twin on a scale crying because she finally tipped 100. Any outburst over weight I would cherish. Also, it would be great to see an actress have a workload meltdown. So maybe at 2:00 some A-lister saying, "I can't handle this s**t anymore." Because I love when actors can't deal with a normal workday, and they think two in the afternoon is like midnight, so I would love to see somebody storming to their car, exhausted because they've put in a grueling four-hour workday of saying three lines and texting their nanny. Then it's maybe off to an illicit affair. At the top of my wish list would be following a rapper or a football player over to his baby mama's house...
A Conversation with Kathy Griffin:
Q: State your name and profession.
KG: My name is Kathy Griffin, and I am a teller of d**k jokes. And a plumber.
Q: This is your first book. Had you ever considered writing anything before? A novel? Or a work of historical scholarship? Or a children's story?
KG: I had not considered it, because I'd always been told by the nuns at St. Bernadine's that my cursive was poor. A children' s story is an interesting idea. How's this for a title: "Waterboarding Pre-Teens: The Debate is Back On." I have a political side as well.
Q: You seem fairly obsessed with Oprah. Is this something you'll ever outgrow?
KG: I will never outgrow my obsession with Oprah. Just as she will never outgrow her cardigan sweaters. Oops, she already has. Now look, that sounds like a dig, but it's not. It's called a struggle, and I'm on it with her. I support her. (Not as much as she needs those underwire bras to support her, because she's got some serious ropes and pulleys going on there.) The point is, I worship her, and fear her at the same time. And believe me, that' s how she wants it. Don't be fooled.
Q: Did I miss something? Where's Celine Dion in this book?
KG: I didn't write about Celine Dion, only because of my fear of her husband Rene Angelil. I have an unfounded but constant fear that he could be in the French-Canadian mafia. Or have French-Canadian mafia ties, and by ties I don't mean les cravats. And I fear that I may be abducted, whisked away and held prisoner at a charming little brasserie in Montreal, forced to eat multiple Croque Monsieur sandwiches until I confess to knowing the lyrics to every single one of her songs.
Q: What do you think gays should take away from reading this book?
KG: I think the gays should be happy with this book. It talks a lot about being who you are, and I certainly mention a lot of gay people. I would say it definitely has strong gay themes, and the gay community should know that frankly it has been a moral struggle for me to even acknowledge the heterosexual community in this book at all. But I am slowly reaching out an olive branch to the heterosexual community, even though I believe everything they do goes against the teachings of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But I'm trying not to judge them.
Q: Describe your ideal, make-a-wish day of personal experiences with bats**t celebrities.
KG: Well, it would start with some sort of a fit in the hair-and-makeup trailer on a set. I heard a story that when Sharon Stone was working on "Casino," she got into such a fight with her hairdresser, that after he spent four hours doing this beautiful bouffant hairdo for her, she got up and walked in the sink and put her head underwater. I have no idea if that's true, but I hope it is, cause that's some awesome s**t I would love to see. Then it would go right to lunch, where I could witness an eating disorder. Maybe a Lohan is purging in a bush somewhere with her finger down her throat. Or perhaps there's an Olsen twin on a scale crying because she finally tipped 100. Any outburst over weight I would cherish. Also, it would be great to see an actress have a workload meltdown. So maybe at 2:00 some A-lister saying, "I can't handle this s**t anymore." Because I love when actors can't deal with a normal workday, and they think two in the afternoon is like midnight, so I would love to see somebody storming to their car, exhausted because they've put in a grueling four-hour workday of saying three lines and texting their nanny. Then it's maybe off to an illicit affair. At the top of my wish list would be following a rapper or a football player over to his baby mama's house...
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Excerpts-
  • From the book

    Chapter One



    THE LITTLEST GOSSIP GIRL

    Have you ever looked at the online photos of Britney's peesh?

    I probably shouldn't start my book with that question, but I just I can't get enough of those photos. I find it nearly impossible to turn away from an online snapshot of any celebrity's peesh. All right, Kath. Focus. This is the story of your life.

    Wait! Have you seen that TV commercial with Wynonna Judd where she hawks diet pills? Look, I don't mean to be rude, but maybe a gal with a big voice and a bigger . . . um . . . talent, shouldn't be hawking diet pills. Come on, you know those pills are just tiny donuts. Teeny, tiny powdered donuts.

    All right, that wasn't very nice. In fact, it was inappropriate, and nothing short of cheap gossip. But let's face it, that's why you bought this book. That's right, I'm bringing it: gays, women, and the occasional DL (down-low) husband. The pages you are about to read have a lot of gossip, but guess what? Most of it's about me. I'm going to try to make this book a recipe (shout out to Paula Deen!) of equal parts shit-talking about myself and others. Yeah, I go down pretty hard on myself in this book. Not as hard as Steve Martin does, or my drunken Irish Catholic relatives do, perhaps. But I've had some heartaches and bumpy passages on this road to notoriety. Basically, I take great pride in the fact that I'm a professional. You're in good hands. This is a job I've been training for my entire life.

    How did I get here, then?

    I'll start with a statement so shocking you might have to burn this book immediately:

    I was a kid who needed to talk. All the time.

    I mean, what's a beleaguered Mary Margaret Griffin to do when her mouthy little daughter won't shut the fuck up? Breathe a sigh of relief, for one thing, whenever I would bolt out the front door of our house on Home Avenue in suburban Oak Park, Illinois.

    But Mom was really of two minds about my exit. While part of her was thinking, Thank God, get her out of my earshot, the other part surely thought, Uh-oh. That's because I'd just go next door to the Bowens' house, where I first learned the power of juicy material.

    The Bowens were an older couple, and they lived with Mrs. Bowen's mother, Mrs. Tyres. The Bowens, Mrs. Tyres, and I had a mutual understanding. They would bribe me with Pepperidge Farm Milano cookies, and I'd freely spill our family secrets, all to my mom's horror, of course. She knew exactly what was going on because she could see it all through our kitchen window, which had a perfect view into the Bowens' formal dining room. Mom would be doing dishes, occasionally nursing a nice highball--boxed wine innovations hadn't arrived yet--then look up, see my mouth moving, and then see the Bowens shaking their heads.

    It was good stuff I was slinging, too. I'd reveal how one of my older siblings would have had a kegger the night before, and I'd run right over with the latest. "Yeah, Joyce had a party and one guy just fell asleep right on the lawn!" I'd excitedly report. "He was real drunk and everything! There was puke everywhere! My mom made me promise not to tell anybody! I don't think she meant you, Mrs. Tyres! Boy, these cookies sure are good!"

    From my perch at the Bowens' table, I could see my poor mom waving me over, mouthing "Get back here! Get back here!" If either Mrs. Bowen or Mrs. Tyres looked over, too, my mom could turn on her party face instantaneously and be all smiles: "Oh hell-o-o-o-o-o-o, Mrs. Bowen!"

    Everything was so prim and proper at the Bowens', with doilies on the table, and cookies neatly laid out on a plate. It was like high tea. At our packed house,...

Reviews-
  • Entertainment Weekly

    "With a foreword begging Oprah to be on her show and a chapter called ''Brooke Shields, Don't Read This,'' Kathy Griffin's autobiography, Official Book Club Selection, is everything you'd expect. What makes it a terrific read, though, is all the stuff you wouldn't expect: binge eating (her own, not Paula Abdul's); her conviction that her late brother was a child molester; and her unflinching accounts of her plastic surgery and her divorce. Whether or not you're a fan, you'll respect her tenacity, work ethic, and loyalty to her parents. And if you are a fan of Griffin's celeb-tastic stand-up, skip to chapter 8, which should be called ''Helen Hunt, Thomas Haden Church, and Ellen DeGeneres, Don't Read This.'' Everyone else, dive in. A--"

  • - NY POST "Funny, honest, and refreshingly unsentimental. Griffin embraces Michael Corleone's mantra with a vengeance: All business is personal."
  • Richmond Times Dispatch "You feel as if Griffin is in the room with you, excitedly gesturing as she recounts a story [and] that's the beauty of Official Book Club Selection--Griffin has been made a fool countless times in her career and her willingness to share those lumps, which, face it, you'll never read in some Oscar-winning A-lister's autobiography, endears her tremendously."
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A Memoir According to Kathy Griffin
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