Tales of the Failed, Dumped, and Canceled
by Jon Friedman
Besides being born and dying, the most common human experience is being rejected–dissed, dumped on, or downsized–by lovers, parents, and employers. Now here’s a hilarious collection of rejection stories–and rejected works–by some of today’s most accomplished comic writers and performers (some world famous) sharing their pieces that were ripped to pieces and their own experiences of being handed their hats, heads, and hearts on a platter.
• Bob Witfong recalls being hired as a correspondent by The Daily Show but never called in to work; then being fired by mistake; then going on air and called “creepy” by bloggers; and then actually being fired.
• Meredith Hoffa has her pubescent crush destroyed by a new haircut modeled on Mary Stuart Masterson’ s in Some Kind of Wonderful just when “the size of my face and body had caught up to the gigantic size of my teeth.”
• Joel Stein (celebrity interviewer for Time) receives an earful from Buddy Hackett who, before slamming down the phone, says: “You’re being kind of, what do you call it, I don’t know, those wise-guy papers? Tabloids.”
• Dave Hill offers his piece for a British “lad” mag in which he went undercover with a police vice squad, an article killed because he didn’t go “far enough” with a transvestite prostitute.
• Jackie Cohen fails her audition for the synagogue choir–at age five.
• And many more too painful to mention.
Featuring essays, jokes, sketches, cartoons, and articles passed on by venues as varied as Saturday Night Live and Reader’s Digest, Rejected is a priceless compilation that reminds us it’s a-okay to be a big loser.
- Random House Publishing Group, January 2009
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