8 things we learned at An Evening with David Sedaris


David Sedaris, humorist and essayist, came to the swanky Providence Performing Arts Center Monday night for a reading of new and past works and a book signing. Sedaris is the author of the bestselling personal essay collections Naked, Me Talk Pretty One Day, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, and Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls, and also frequently contributes to The New Yorker magazine and blog. With a stack of books and papers under his arm, Sedaris wandered onto the massive PPAC stage to read, teaching us a few things:

1. Tumors make good turtle food. Sedaris had a benign fatty tumor in his side called a lipoma. He had taken a liking to a particular snapping turtle, which had a growth on his head, near his house in Emerald Isle and came to the conclusion that he had to feed his tumor to the turtle. He went to a doctor who said he could take the tumor out, but could not give him any removed body parts due to Federal law. Sedaris had the tumor removed in the middle of the night by a fan who approached him at a book signing, who explained that while she was not a surgeon officially, she learned it for a year in med school. After his trip to her clinic after the show, Sedaris kept the tumor in his freezer for almost a year, as the turtles were hibernating. But, when springtime rolled around and he returned to Emerald Isle, Sedaris discovered that his favorite snapping turtle had died over the winter. Sedaris somewhat reluctantly fed the tumor to other turtles in the area, and they gobbled it up!

2. Sedaris is a local litter hero. As described in his 2014 essay in The New Yorker, “Stepping Out”, Sedaris loves his FitBit. When he first got it, he loved it so much that he started picking up trash on his long walks, upping his self-imposed litter-patrol shifts to about nine hours a day, around 60,000 steps, and about 20 – 25 miles. Sedaris shared that he once collected garbage for 30 miles in one day, taking him 11.5 hours. Sedaris has collected so much garbage around his village in West Sussex, England that the local council has named a garbage truck after him and he was invited to Buckingham Palace last May to meet Queen Elizabeth II. 

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PSA: The Book of Mormon is playing in Providence

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The award-winning Broadway musical The Book of Mormon is opening at the Providence Performing Arts Center tomorrow, April 29, and will play through May 11. Written by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the co-creators of South Park, and starring Robert Lopez of the hit musical Avenue Q, the show is a religious satire about two young Mormon men on their mission to Uganda. The mismatched pair attempts to impart the teachings of the Book of Mormon on the Ugandan population, but the locals are more focused on an invading warlord and the spread of AIDS.

The play racked up nine Tony Awards including Best Musical, and kept up the momentum this month with four wins at the Olivier Awards in London. Jon Stuart of The Daily Show said that the Book of Mormon is “So good it makes me angry.” What more incentive do you need? 

Tickets range from $35-$93 and they’re selling out like hot Blue Room cookies, so act fast to snag a seat. Drop your textbooks and go see The Book of Mormon – hasa diga eebowai.

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