First book of the "12 x12" challenge down and it's only January 2nd. This one ticked the "book chosen for you by your spouse, partner, sibling, child, or BFF" box. So, first a little background into my knowledge of Amanda Palmer. Son Ben was home for a brief (usually less than 24 hour) visit last year sometime (it's hard to say when--the older I get, the more elastic time seems to become) when he asked me if I knew who Amanda Palmer was. My knowledge of music is limited to my early 80's high school years and Adele, so of course I didn't know Amanda Palmer. Since he knows his English-teacher mother, Ben first referenced Amanda's husband Neil Gaiman, who of course I did know. Then he had me listen to "The Ukulele Anthem." During one of our infrequent phone check-ins, he told me Amanda and Neil were expecting. He Facebooked when they had the baby. It's fair to say Ben is a big fan. So I at least had a passing acquaintance with Amanda Palmer when The Art of Asking showed up under the Christmas tree for me this year.
How many times can I say "WOW"? I cannot begin to understand the courage it would take to be SO brutally honest about one's life, warts and all. I immediately watched (and linked to) her TED talk. I loved the intermingling of her song lyrics, and it was especially poignant for me that she ended with the one song that I knew--"The Ukulele Anthem." The thing that made the biggest impression is that Palmer doesn't try to apologize, lay blame, justify or excuse anything--this is her life and this is what she's learned and she's still learning and that's life. This is exactly the book that I needed to read, because I am absolutely NOT an asker. I will KILL myself trying to do something alone before I'll ask for help. Loved it. Ben, you OWNED Christmas this year!