Events β€” 13 June 2013
Marc Maron “Attempting Normal” Reading at Barnes & Noble Union Square

Comedian Marc Maron is self-deprecating, real, and all inclusive but most importantly, he is very funny. In recent years, “Maron” as he is affectionately called by those close to him, has transcended his “Comedian’s Comedian” label and created a bold new career for himself. He is the host of the widely popular “WTF Podcast,” a new IFC television show named after himself and author of the book “Attempting Normal.” With this much on his plate you would think Maron would be full of excitement. But as is his general attitude, he feels he can screw it up at anytime.

On Wednesday night, Marc Maron made an appearance at Barnes & Noble in New York City’s Union Square for an intimate reading, discussion and book signing of “Attempting Normal.” At 7pm, the upper level of the mega bookstore was at capacity with fans holding copies of the book waiting with baited breath for the comedian to arrive. And after a fittingly funny introduction, Maron hit the stage to a rousing applause and cheers. He took a few moments to rap with the crowd, which felt similar to his one sided conversations with listeners that lead off all of his weekly podcasts. Maron then casually began the evening’s readings which would cover a wide scope of what we can expect from this hilarious book.

The first reading covered Maron’s very early days in the stand-up comedy business, having to drive and open up for infamous road comic Frankie Bastille. Marc’s rapid delivery style transported us inside the car and onto the stage beside the comic who Maron referred to as a criminal, going city to city avoiding both police and attorneys. Drugs, awkward stage introductions and more uncomfortable events brilliantly filled this story which was a pleasure to hear aloud from the author himself. After a few minutes of Maron’s trademark banter he launched into two hilarious tales of his only encounters with hookers- very cheap hookers. Both of these stories took place during his time as a comedian starting out in Boston and he was sure to make several mentions of the tough Boston attitude, shady neighborhoods and of course that fantastic accent. These two stories alone make the purchase of the book worthwhile.

Maron kept the seriously funny readings going with stories including: cooking Thanksgiving dinner at his mother’s house and dealing with her odd eating habits, and an essay about having a baby as an older man with his now fiancΓ©. Every word that came from his mouth showed just how relatable Maron is to the everyman. The audience interaction continued during the Q&A where truckloads of belly laughs were heard as Maron fielded questions about his father and feud with Jon Stewart. Marc Maron may be just like us but he is one hell of a funny guy. “Attempting Normal” is available right now wherever books are sold. Lock the gates.

- Jay Rubin

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