Read Bright Lights, Big Ass: A Self-Indulgent, Surly, Ex-Sorority Girl's Guide to Why It Often Sucks in the City, or Who Are These Idiots and Why Do They All Live Next Door to Me? Online

Authors: Jen Lancaster

Tags: #Form, #General, #Chicago (Ill.), #21st Century, #Lancaster; Jen, #Humorous fiction, #Personal Memoirs, #Humorous, #Authors; American - 21st century, #Fiction, #Essays, #Jeanne, #City and town life, #Authors; American, #Chicago (Ill.) - Social life and customs, #Biography & Autobiography, #Biography, #Humor, #Women

Bright Lights, Big Ass: A Self-Indulgent, Surly, Ex-Sorority Girl's Guide to Why It Often Sucks in the City, or Who Are These Idiots and Why Do They All Live Next Door to Me?

Raves for Jen Lancaster

Bright Lights, Big Ass

“Lessons we’ve learned from Jen Lancaster: Bitter is the new black; Target is the new Neiman’s; pit bulls and surly neighbors are the new Samanthas, Charlottes and Mirandas; and midday whiskey is always a good idea.
Bright Lights, Big Ass
is a bittersweet treat for anyone who’s ever survived the big city.”

—Jennifer Weiner

“Refreshing, hysterical, illuminating! From the title on,
Bright Lights, Big Ass
is an anti-haute hoot. In a voice that’s charming and snarky, hilarious and human, Jen Lancaster tells the ultraglamorous truth about real big-city living. And it’s better than anything on TV. Jen Lancaster does not teeter around on Manolo Blahniks or have lobster for breakfast. She eats pork chops and Lucky Charms. She dreams of shopping sprees at Target. She works temp jobs and spends too much time Googling things online. She wears footie pajamas. In other words, she’s a lot like the rest of us. Thank God! And this wonderful, sweet, funny book proves once and for all that Carrie Bradshaw and her
Sex and the City
cronies are big, fat liars. Of course. Of course they are.”

—Lori Jakiela, author of
Miss New York Has Everything


Bright Lights, Big Ass
is brightly crafted and big on laughs. Jen Lancaster is wickedly funny, refreshingly honest and totally unapologetic.”

—Caprice Crane, author of
Stupid and Contagious
and
Forget About It

“Jen Lancaster may be one of the few authors around capable of writing her own sitcom; she’s smart, wry, and never afraid to point out her own shortcomings while letting us into her uniquely funny world.”

—Melanie Lynne Hauser, author of
Super Mom Saves the World

“Jen Lancaster is the Holy Trinity of funny.”

—Nicole Del Sesto, author of
All Encompassing Trip

“After reading
Bright Lights, Big Ass
, I’m convinced Jen Lancaster is the illegitimate love child of Nora Ephron and David Sedaris. She’s simply that great—a genetic hybrid of two of America’s most loved writers. In
Bright Lights
,
Big Ass
, Jen Lancaster gives the proverbial ‘finger’ to the Carrie Bradshaw lifestyle trading Barneys, Manolo Blahnik, and Bergdorf’s for her very own shopping Holy Trinity: Target, Trader Joe’s and Ikea, allowing women everywhere to rejoice in their $60 Issac Mizrahi Target coats.”

—Robert Rave, author of
Conversations & Cosmopolitans:

How to Give Your Mother a Hangover

“Jen Lancaster is like David Sedaris with pearls and a supercute handbag.”

—Jennifer Coburn

“Part
Seinfeld
, part antidote to
Sex and the City
,
Bright Lights, Big Ass
is the must read for anyone who has ever suffered through a regretfully torturous workout with her trainer, a run-in with irrational, perhaps psychotic neighbors, a long-winded, insipid telemarketer or the black hole known as Ikea. (And really, isn’t this everyone?) Nothing and no one is spared from Jen Lancaster’s acerbically sharp wit, as she gives voice to all of the things we wish we could say, but don’t. I defy you not to laugh out loud on nearly every page. Someone give this girl her own show, already!
That
would be must-see TV.”

—Allison Winn Scotch, author of
The Department of Lost and Found

Bitter Is the New Black

“The funniest new author from the blogosphere. A must read.”

—Jessica Cutler, Author of
The Washingtonienne

“A wry account of job seeking peppered with scathing one-liners.”


The Washington Post

“An irreverent, abrasive, and funny self-portrait.”

—Chattanooga Times–Free Press

Bright Lights, Big Ass

A Self-Indulgent, Surly Ex-Sorority Girl’s Guide to Why It Often Sucks in the City, or Who Are These Idiots and Why Do They All Live Next Door to Me?

Jen Lancaster

New American Library
Published by New American Library, a division of
Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 375 Hudson Street,
New York, New York 10014, USA
Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario M4P 2Y3, Canada (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.) Penguin Books Ltd., 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
Penguin Ireland, 25 St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2,
Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd.)
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Auckland 1311, New Zealand (a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd.) Penguin Books (South Africa) (Pty.) Ltd., 24 Sturdee Avenue,
Rosebank, Johannesburg 2196, South Africa

Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England

First published by New American Library, a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

Copyright © Jen Lancaster, 2007
All rights reserved

REGISTERED TRADEMARK—MARCA REGISTRADA

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS CATALOGING-IN-PUBLICATION DATA:

Lancaster, Jen, 1967–

Bright lights, big ass / Jen Lancaster.
     p. cm.
ISBN: 1-4295-3414-1
1. Lancaster, Jen, 1967–2. Authors, American—21st century—Biography. 3.
Chicago (Ill.)—Social life and customs. I. Title.
PS3612.A54748Z466 2007
813'.6—dc22
[B]          2006032863

Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise), without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book.

PUBLISHER’S NOTE

While the author has made every effort to provide accurate telephone numbers and Internet addresses at the time of publication, neither the publisher nor the author assumes any responsibility for errors, or for changes that occur after publication. Further, publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party Web sites or their content.

The scanning, uploading, and distribution of this book via the Internet or via any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal and punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.

For Angie, Carol, Jennifer, and Wendy,
who were there from the very first word
and who promise to host an intervention
(complete with umbrella drinks)
should the need arise

Author’s Note

These stories are true, and the characters are real, as are the events. However, I’ve changed names and descriptions to protect the innocent and to keep my stupid neighbors from egging my house.

Where skin-deep is the mode, your traditional
domestic values are not going to take root and flourish.

—J
AY
M
CINERNEY,
B
RIGHT
L
IGHTS,
B
IG
C
ITY

You’re moving to Chicago? Ha!
You’ll come crawling home the first time
you bounce a rent check.

—T
ODD
L
ANCASTER,
M
AY
6, 1996

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