The Seven Cardinal Sins [Illustrated] Envy and Indolence
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Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3.
Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Writing about sloth in the context of a self-help book parody is a great concept! There are some genuine laughs here, and the book is oddly faithful to the genre it skewers. Oddly for such a small book, there's sections that just seem like dead weight, and some of the jokes -- especially those that reference more serious topics, like depression or terrorism -- just don't work and seem out of place.
Jan 02, Kerfe rated it did not like it Shelves: essays.
It was supposed to be funny, I know. I even could tell how and where it was supposed to be funny. But it seemed endlessly repetitive and whiney and pointless instead. Who wants to support capitalist greed or the result of self-centered striving?
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For most of us, dreams are just Connections, looks, money--they all trump hard work. Our lives are overscheduled, we need to slow down. For most of the world, not working is not surviving. It's not a joke. I don't often give up on books, but this one beat me half way through. View 1 comment.
Funny in many places and yet the funny I expected, perhaps needed, to find herein, I didn't. I wanted laugh out loud, extensive chuckling not choke, spit occasional bursts. Picky, picky as Pat Paulsen would say to that. This is a very well-done parody with plenty of sarcasm in it's basic fiber and so true that it hurts even when at its funniest. Still I think I wanted something more, something else, as well and I'm not sure what that was exactly. Thus I'm giving it the basic okay -- which for me Funny in many places and yet the funny I expected, perhaps needed, to find herein, I didn't.
Thus I'm giving it the basic okay -- which for me means -- it wasn't hitting on all cylinders for whatever reason. The possibility exists that it's my own timing that was off and not the book's. Sep 02, Dennis Littrell rated it really liked it. A fine excuse for some much-needed social satire Sloth, ah yes, sloth. By the way, both pronunciations, sloth with a long "o" to rhyme with "both," and sloth with a short "o" to rhyme with "moth" are correct.
It's one of the seven deadly sins and this is one of seven books on them commissioned by the Oxford University Press and the New York Public Library. The books are all short and neat and beautifully presented. Each grew out of lectures sponsored by Oxford and the library. Here we have Pulit A fine excuse for some much-needed social satire Sloth, ah yes, sloth. Here we have Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Wendy Wasserstein championing the cause of sloth as she parodies self-help tomes she has apparently read a few while satirizing the mass culture and of course herself to the reader's delight.
Wasserstein is not so much knockdown funny as she is entertaining. There are a few belly laughs and a number of chuckles, but mostly there is the sense that she is actually saying something of value about who we are and where we're going. Clearly Wasserstein knows human foibles and she knows the seduction of the mass culture and especially that nasty admonition from others especially your parents to "make something of yourself. She has an "Activity Gram Counter" that limits you to 50 grams of activity a day.
Not to worry, reading People Magazine rates a minus 5 grams, but watch out for those "Great turn-of-the-century Russian novels," the reading of which costs you a whopping grams a session. In essence this is a celebration of sloth as the way to health and happiness, a stress-free life, a better world, and most importantly, a better YOU. I think the book was mostly successful and I enjoyed reading it. However Wendy's assumption of a male self-help guru persona was not consistently maintained and should never have been employed since 1 it added nothing; 2 could not in any way disguise Wasserstein's unique voice; and 3 made for some confusion since it was obvious that the most telling observations came from a femme point of view.
And this despite the fact that some of the humor revolves around an ambiguous sexual orientation; e.
Accompanying the text is some charming artwork by Serge Bloch, most of it line drawings, one of which appears on the cover, that of an amazingly relaxed and blissful stick-figure man in a hammock. Wasserstein claims that reading this book only costs two activity grams and that rereading it is a "Sloth Zone Activity" resulting in a negative 25 grams. I hate to tell her but I read it while peddling my exercise bike. Jul 07, Sarah rated it liked it Shelves: christianity , satirical.
This book presents itself as a self-help instruction to the sloth lifestyle, in a very satirical fashion. While I did find it humorous, there were some parts that seemed repetitive or did not add much. I was slightly disappointed, as the other books in the Seven Deadly Sins series had much more background on the respective sins, and included multi-disciplinary approaches i.
Sloth included almost none of these elements. Even though th This book presents itself as a self-help instruction to the sloth lifestyle, in a very satirical fashion. Even though the book did not meet my expectations or the standards set by the other books in the series , I did have a good laugh.
Nov 06, Jane rated it liked it. This book originated from a lecture Wasserstein was asked to present on one of the seven deadly sins. She wrote it as a satire on self-help books — how the sloth life-style is best.
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And, then I only finished it because the library would not This book originated from a lecture Wasserstein was asked to present on one of the seven deadly sins. And, then I only finished it because the library would not let me renew it again. Nov 22, Peter Herrmann rated it did not like it. Not funny. Not clever. Not interesting. Not worth reading. Jun 29, Sarah rated it liked it Shelves: don-t-own. Strange little parody. Made me laugh a few times. This gently funny book, in the style of a self-help manual, satirizes the advice and personal improvement messages we're immersed in.
Written in the earnest voice of "a regular guy whose life was totally changed by sloth," Wasserstein lays out the Sloth Plan, which promotes "stationary sex" over active sex, reading People over the New York Times , and choosing Cheetos over a grilled fish dinner in a program designed to help the devotee empty her mind, save energy, opt out of competition, and "eli This gently funny book, in the style of a self-help manual, satirizes the advice and personal improvement messages we're immersed in.
Written in the earnest voice of "a regular guy whose life was totally changed by sloth," Wasserstein lays out the Sloth Plan, which promotes "stationary sex" over active sex, reading People over the New York Times , and choosing Cheetos over a grilled fish dinner in a program designed to help the devotee empty her mind, save energy, opt out of competition, and "eliminate the nagging tug of passion, creativity, and individual drive" Ah, Wasserstein has a purpose with this book.
Without moralizing, she shows the underside of society's feverish pursuits. When I picked up the "Sunday Styles" section of the paper today, I couldn't help but read all the chat about parties, clothes, and fancy weddings through her lens. More crafty than weighty, Sloth makes you chuckle, and think. May 08, Danielle Mohlman added it.
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I read this on the train to and from bars and cesspool clubs and crowded streets. She would have been proud — just the right amount of wrong. Those are masterpieces, this is satire. Those hit you in the gut and make you cry and laugh and feel things, this makes repetitive jokes about staying still. But satire can be good sometimes. My friend loves her family. I should have read the other reviews more closely before I picked this short book up.
Unfortunately, this is a one note joke which is very amusing in the Introduction and goes down hill from there.
Wasserstein writes plays and I suspect that her sense of timing is excellent. However, that does not necessarily translate to a book. Since I should have read the other reviews more closely before I picked this short book up. Since I picked this up on a day when I was being especially slothful, it was not a total waste.