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Too Fat to Fish by Artie Lange
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Too Fat to Fish (2008)

by Artie Lange

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If you are considering picking this book up and are expecting it to be funny, think again! This book is absolutely not funny. In fact, it is a steaming pile of misery and despair seasoned throughout with self deprecation.

The beginning is actually quite sweet; a picture of his idyllic suburban Newark childhood with a devoted and loving father who was his best pal. From about the age of 18 onward it was one huge roller coaster ride of living hell. Do I feel sorry for Artie Lange? No, not really. His hell is one of his own making, stoked up by his own horrible and usually selfish decisions over and over and over again. Do I empathize with and wish him well? Sure.

So, why the two stars? The writing wasn't bad. Admittedly (by Mr. Lange) the book was "co-written" with some dude who used to work for Rolling Stone and has "co-written" a couple of other books for recording artists. Ahem, I dare to say that Artie didn't "write" much of this book, but rather provided the material. Fine. Then it should have been FUNNY. Misery can be told in a way that is funny. Sedaris does it. Nearly all stand-up is relating misery in a very funny way. This book was NOT funny.

My other problem with it was it was so "kiss ass" at the end of every story was the (eventually expected), "But, so'n'so's such a great guy/gal, really great. He/she saved my life! I love you, ______" It reminded me of the drunk at the party you may not even know well, but they keep telling you how much they love you...in very slurred speech. Everyone the guy has met or worked with received this same blah blah blah (Apart from Tom Cruise and that Kelly person who is married to John Travolta...big shock there.) Maybe they are all the greatest people ever, that just makes me wonder why he is such a misery guts even more. I've worked with a LOT of wankers over the years, people you'd be tempted to wish ill, very very ill. So, if he's only ever been surrounded with all of these GREAT guys from the days on the docks to the Stern show...what the hell, man?

The only slightly funny bit was when the bookie is screaming at him and his buddy threatening to kill and rape a vast number of people; all the while with his Ash Wednesday cross on his head. I still never laughed out loud, or even chuckled. The story was too crowded around with horror and depression, it just couldn't break free. (Thanks for the Ash Wednesday education, Bun. Without it prior to reading this book, I wouldn't have understood the only slightly funny bit in it! I would have missed it altogether.)

If Artie "writes" another book, which he alludes to at the end of this one, I will not read it. I've had a close enough look at Mr. Lange, thank you. Quite close enough. ( )
  Ameliapei | Apr 18, 2013 |
Artie Lang is a big mess and funny as hell ( )
  HairyHarry | Apr 3, 2013 |
I love Artie, he seems like a sweet bear of a guy with a huge heart and lots of problems! It was sweet reading about him and his dad. Though the book was ok there was really not a whole lot in it that he hasnt told on the Stern show over the years. Glad I read it but it didnt knock my socks off. I think maybe the audio version would be funnier. ( )
  SenoraG163 | Sep 10, 2011 |
If you love Artie, you'll love this book. If not . . . meh. I happen to love him, so I'm glad I made the "investment" (two day read, max.) Can't believe this guy is still living; I'm confused by his overabundant love for his family and friends and yet his hatred for himself. Seems like life keeps giving him gifts (jobs, fame, $$, etc.) and yet he just can't seem to keep on the right side of the road. If you have the choice, I've heard the audio version is great. ( )
  kelawrence | Sep 27, 2010 |
Alternative title: "Too Fucking Stupid to Read". ( )
  wade_coleman | Sep 27, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0385526563, Hardcover)

Outrageous, raw, and painfully funny true stories straight from the life of the actor, comedian, and much-loved cast member of The Howard Stern Show—with a foreword by Howard Stern.

When Artie Lange joined the permanent cast of The Howard Stern Show in 2001, it was possibly the greatest thing ever to happen in the Stern universe, second only to the show’s move to the wild, uncensored frontier of satellite radio. Lange provided what Stern had yet to find all in the same place: a wit quick enough to keep pace with his own, a pathetic self-image to dwarf his own, a personal history both heartbreaking and hilarious, and an ingrained sense of self-sabotage that continually keeps things interesting.

A natural storyteller with a bottomless pit of material, Lange grew up in a close-knit, working-class Italian family in Union, New Jersey, a maniacal Yankees fan who pursued the two things his father said he was cut out for—sports and comedy. Tragically, Artie Lange Sr. never saw the truth in that prediction: He became a quadriplegic in an accident when Artie was eighteen and died soon after. But as with every trial in his life, from his drug addiction to his obesity to his fights with his mother, Artie mines the humor, pathos, and humanity in these events and turns them into comedy classics.

True fans of the Stern Show will find Artie gold in these pages: hilarious tales that couldn’t have happened to anyone else. There are stories from his days driving a Jersey cab, working as a longshoreman in Port Newark, and navigating the dark circuit of stand-up comedy. There are outrageous episodes from the frenzied heights of his coked-up days at MADtv, surprisingly moving stories from his childhood, and an account of his recent U.S.O. tour that is equally stirring and irreverent. But also in this volume are stories Artie’s never told before, including some that he deemed too revealing for radio.

Wild, shocking, and drop-dead hilarious, TOO FAT TO FISH is Artie Lange giving everything he’s got to give. And like a true pro, the man never disappoints.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:24:32 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

When stand-up comic Lange joined the cast of "The Howard Stern Show" in 2001, he provided a wit quick enough to keep pace with Stern's own. Wild, shocking, and drop-dead funny, "Too Fat to Fish" is Lange's reflection on his rise to stardom.

» see all 2 descriptions

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