Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)

BOOK: Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)
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Copyright © 2011 by Mindy Kaling
All rights reserved.

Published in the United States by Crown Archetype, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House, Inc., New York.
www.crownpublishing.com

CROWN ARCHETYPE with colophon is a trademark of Random House, Inc.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Kaling, Mindy.
Is everyone hanging out without me? (and other concerns) / Mindy Kaling. —1st ed.
p. cm.
1. American wit and humor. 2. Kaling, Mindy. I. Title.
PN6165.K35I8 2011
818’.602—dc23
2011033922

eISBN: 978-0-307-88628-6

Jacket design by Laura Duffy
Jacket photography by Autumn de Wilde

7.3
, photo of Mindy Kaling and Conan O’Brien, copyright © NBCU Photo Bank/Margaret Norton.
14.2
, photo of Mindy Kaling and Paul Lieberstein, copyright © Michael Gallenberg.
14.5
, photo of Mindy Kaling directing Will Ferrell, copyright © NBCU Photo Bank/Chris Haston/NBC.
All other photographs,
Matt & Ben
postcard, and
Matt & Ben
script excerpt are courtesy of the author.

v3.1

For my parents

Contents

Cover

Title Page

Copyright

Dedication

HELLO

Introduction

Alternate Titles for This Book

I FORGET NOTHING: A SENSITIVE KID LOOKS BACK

Chubby for Life

I Am Not an Athlete

Don’t Peak in High School

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (Or, How I Made My First Real Friend)

I LOVE NEW YORK AND IT LIKES ME OKAY

Failing at Everything in the Greatest City on Earth

The Exact Level of Fame I Want

Karaoke Etiquette

Day Jobs

Best Friend Rights and Responsibilities

Matt & Ben & Mindy & Brenda

HOLLYWOOD: MY GOOD FRIEND WHO IS ALSO A LITTLE EMBARRASSING

Types of Women in Romantic Comedies Who Are Not Real

All About
The Office

Franchises I Would Like to Reboot

Contributing Nothing at
Saturday Night Live

Roasts Are Terrible

My Favorite Eleven Moments in Comedy

How I Write

The Day I Stopped Eating Cupcakes

Somewhere in Hollywood Someone Is Pitching This Movie

THE BEST DISTRACTION IN THE WORLD: ROMANCE AND GUYS

Someone Explain One-Night Stands to Me

“Hooking Up” Is Confusing

I Love Irish Exits

Guys Need to Do Almost Nothing to Be Great

Non-Traumatic Things That Have Made Me Cry

Jewish Guys

Men and Boys

In Defense of Chest Hair

Married People Need to Step It Up

Why Do Men Put on Their Shoes So Slowly?

MY APPEARANCE: THE FUN AND THE REALLY NOT FUN

When You’re Not Skinny, This Is What People Want You to Wear

These Are the Narcissistic Photos in My BlackBerry

Revenge Fantasies While Jogging

MY ALL-IMPORTANT LEGACY

Strict Instructions for My Funeral

A Eulogy for Mindy Kaling, by Michael Schur

Good-bye

Acknowledgments

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?
(And Other Concerns)

Hello

Introduction

T
HANK YOU
for buying this book. Or, if my publisher’s research analytics are correct, thank you, Aunts of America, for buying this for your niece you don’t know that well but really want to connect with more. There are many teenage vampire books you could have purchased instead. I’m grateful you made this choice.

I thought I’d take a minute to answer some questions:

What is this book about?

In this book I write a lot about romance, female friendships, unfair situations that now seem funny in retrospect, unfair situations that I still don’t think are funny, Hollywood, heartache, and my childhood. Just that really hard-core, masculine stuff men love to read about. I wrote this book in a way that reflects how I think. Sometimes it’s an essay or story, and sometimes it’s a
pliest,
which is a piece with a list-y quality, a term I’ve just made up.

Is this one of those guide books celebrities write for girls?

Oh, hell no. I’m only marginally qualified to be giving advice at all. My body mass index is certainly not ideal, I frequently use my debit card to buy things that cost less than three dollars, because I never have cash on me, and my bedroom is so untidy it looks like vandals ransacked the Anthropologie Sale section. I’m kind of a mess. I did, however, fulfill a childhood dream of writing and acting in television and movies. Armed with that confidence, alongside a lifelong love of the sound of my own voice, yes, I’ve put some advice in this book.

However, you should know I disagree with a lot of traditional advice. For instance, they say the best revenge is living well. I say it’s acid in the face—who will love them now? Another old saying is that revenge is a dish best served cold. But it
feels
best served piping hot, straight out of the oven of outrage. My opinion? Take care of revenge right away. Push, shove, scratch that person while they’re still within arm’s reach. Don’t let them get away! Who knows when you’ll get this opportunity again?

Do you offer up a lot of opinions in this book?

A little bit. I do lay in some opinions here and there. For example, I don’t think it should be socially acceptable for people to say they are “bad with names.” No one is bad with names. That is not a real thing. Not knowing people’s names isn’t a neurological condition; it’s a choice. You
choose
not to make learning people’s names a priority. It’s like saying, “Hey, a disclaimer about me: I’m rude.” For heaven’s sake, if you don’t know someone’s name, just pretend you do. Do that thing everyone else does, where you vaguely say, “Nice to see you!” and make weak eye contact.

So, is this book like a women’s magazine?

Not really, but if it reads like a really funny magazine, I’ll be psyched. I love magazines. You can’t walk by a magazine and not sit down and read it. You try to throw away a magazine and if you don’t push it down in the trash enough, it somehow resurfaces on the floor of your TV room. I know this because I swear my house has been haunted by the same December 2004 issue of
Glamour
magazine for the past seven years.

I’m buying this book for my daughter, whom I’m trying to reconnect with after my acrimonious divorce from her mother. Will this help me seem like a cool, understanding dad?

Honestly, I think you should buy her some kind of SUV. This is what all the divorced dads did for their kids in my high school. A Land Rover, something like that. If you don’t have that kind of money, I would just suggest reconciling with the mom.

I don’t know. I have a lot of books already. I wanted to finish those
Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
books before the movies come out.

This book will take you two days to read. Did you even see the cover? It’s mostly pink. If you’re reading this book every night for months, something is not right.

This sounds okay, but not as good as Tina Fey’s book. Why isn’t this more like Tina Fey’s book?

I know, man. Tina’s awesome. I think she may have every major international trophy for excellence except a Heisman. (She might actually have an honorary Heisman, I should check.) Unfortunately, I can’t be Tina, because it’s very difficult to lure her into a
Freaky Friday
–type situation where we could switch bodies, even though in the movies they make it look so easy. Believe me, I’ve tried.

What else should I know?

(1) There is no sunrise so beautiful that it is worth waking me up to see it.
(2) I would like to be friends with Beyoncé Knowles.
·  ·  ·

Well, I think I’ve covered everything and have still maintained an air of sexy mystery about myself. I feel good about this.

Love, 
Mindy

Alternate Titles for This Book

H
ERE WERE
some titles for my book that I really liked but was advised strongly not to use.

The Girl with No Tattoo

When Your Boyfriend Fits into Your Jeans and Other Atrocities

The Book That Was Never a Blog

Always Wear Flats and Have Your Friends Sleep Over: A Step-by-Step How-To Guide for Avoiding Getting Murdered

Harry Potter Secret Book #8

Sometimes You Just Have to Put on Lip Gloss and Pretend to Be Psyched

I Want Dirk Nowitzki to Host
Saturday Night Live
So Much That I’m Making It the Title of My Book

Barf Me to Death and Other Things I’ve Been Known to Say

The Last Mango in Paris
(this would work best if “Mango” were the cheeky nickname for an Indian woman, and if I’d spent any time in Paris)

So You’ve Just Finished Chelsea Handler’s Book, Now What?

Deep-Dish Pizza in Kabul
(a touching novel about a brave girl enjoying Chicago-style pizza in secret Taliban-ruled Afghanistan)

There Has Ceased to Be a Difference Between My Awake Clothes and My Asleep Clothes

I Don’t Know How She Does It, But I Suspect She Gets Help from Illegal Immigrants

I Forget Nothing: A Sensitive Kid Looks Back

Chubby for Life

I
DON’T REMEMBER
a time when I wasn’t chubby. Like being Indian, being chubby feels like it is just part of my permanent deal. I remember being in first grade, in Mrs. Gilmore’s class at Fiske Elementary School, and seeing that Ashley Kemp, the most popular girl in our class, weighed only thirty-seven pounds. We knew this because we weighed her on the industrial postal scale they kept in the teacher’s supply closet. I was so envious. I snuck into the supply closet later that same day to weigh myself. I was a whopping sixty-eight pounds.

Some of the first math I understood was that I was closer to twice Ashley’s weight than to her weight.

“Don’t be closer to
twice
a friend’s weight than to her actual weight,” I told myself. This little mantra has helped me stave off obesity for more than two decades.

My mom’s a doctor, but because she came from India and then Africa, where childhood obesity was not a problem, she put no premium on having skinny kids. In fact, she and my dad didn’t mind having a chubby daughter. Part of me wonders if it even made them feel a little prosperous, like
Have you seen our overweight Indian child? Do you know how statistically rare this is?
It will then not come as a surprise to you that I’ve never been thin in my life—except the day I was born, when I was six pounds.

BOOK: Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)
8.27Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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