Review: Bossy Pants by Tina Fey

November 21, 2011 in Life

One of my favourite things to do on a brisk Fall day is read … with a nice glass of red wine (obvs). My friends have been ranting and raving about Tina Fey’s book, Bossy Pants, since its release in the summer. I hesitated in jumping on the bandwagon because I’m not usually one for biographies. I’m more of a fiction lover, but was persuaded otherwise this time… only because Tina Fey is absolutely awesome.

Let me tell you, ten pages in and I fell in love. It was raw, honest and hilarious – in a self-deprecating manner. Fey delves into every single fibre that makes up the brilliant and, most times, awkward tapestry that is her life. She transitions seamlessly from her humble childhood in West Philadelphia to her defining moments as an adult. She even tells you how she got the scar on her chin.

Everyone has a strong parental figure that shapes their life. It’s either your mom or dad, or both. In Fey’s case, it was her dad, Don Fey. To sum it up, he’s an intimidating badass. Apparently, if he told you to jump, you’d Google how to build rocket shoes and fly to the moon – all just to impress him. Powerful men like SNL creator, Lorne Michaels, and 30 Rock star, Alec Baldwin, step down to him. Think of Chuck Norris, but Greek. That’s Don Fey.

A majority of the book discusses her love life, or lack thereof. Fey talks about how her strategy in attracting boys was to be “one of them.” By being one of them, Fey means wearing oversized t-shirts, bicycle shorts, wrestling shoes, and having a “whatever dude” attitude. Except in my day, it was tearaways, basketball shoes and a doorag. That’s right. A doorag. Despite what you may think, this tactic did not work … and it still doesn’t. Unlike Justin Timberlake, I did not bring sexy back.

Oh, and it also sprinkles in talks about how to be a good boss. I quote, “In most cases being a good boss means hiring talented people and then getting out of their way. In other cases, to get the best work out of people you may have to pretend you are not their boss and let them treat someone else like the boss, and then that whispers to you behind a fake wall and you tell them what to tell the first person. Contrary to what I believed as a little girl, being the boss almost never involves marching around, waving your arms, and chanting, ” I am the boss! I am the boss!” Brilliant.

What I find most interesting about Tina Fey is that nothing was handed to her. Nepotism is rampant in the entertainment industry, but that’s not how Fey rolls. After University, she moved to Chicago on pennies and worked at a local YMCA to survive while at Second City. Her work ethic and undeniably raw talent got her to where she is now.

In conclusion, everyone, men and women, can relate to this written work of art. I say this subjectively. It might not discuss the inner workings of spirituality but it’s a darn good read and does, in its own way, inspire.

-LC