When I got this book from NetGalley, I was excited to read it again. I grew up in a family with five kids, and Erma Bombeck’s clippings were always on our fridge. My mother used to love her, because it was as if she lived in our house, and justified everything my mother always told us. When her books came out, I read them too, and I did agree they were funny. After all, any of these could have been written about the kids in my family.
I wanted to read them again as a mother, to see if things looked differently now from my altered point of view. Ahhh, so different. I was reminded of the Francis books I read and loved as a child (Bread and Jam for Francis particularly), which I thought were such adorable stories. Years later, I realized that my mother was being ironic — trying to prove to her pickiest eater that there’s more to life than bread and jam. This collection of stories achieved a similar feat, proving to me that my mother did truly get the last laugh on us. Erma Bombeck of course, was one of the original bloggers, so we have a debt to her for paving the way. But most of all, she made our ordinary suburban life something to write home about: something to glorify and something to satirize, something to wish for, and some days, something to post on the refrigerator to put all of the guilty parties on notice.