By Rachael Bentley
Mindy Kaling was born for comedy. At least she is 100 percent certain that she was. With the release of her first book, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns), Kaling makes it known to the world that she’s made her mark on the comedic industry, and that she isn’t planning on going anywhere.
Kaling, 32, is most renowned for her work on the famous TV sitcom The Office, in which she plays Kelly Kapoor. She is also an Emmy-winning writer and director for the show. She broke into the industry by portraying Ben Affleck in a play titled Matt & Ben in 2003, which she co-wrote with friend and roommate Brenda Withers.
From the second you start reading her book, Kaling will have you laughing out loud. Her recount of her own rise to fame is full of humility thanks to her ability to laugh at her own flaws. Her style of writing is whimsical and quirky, with no real plot or outline, but it fits her outgoing personality.
Kaling brings us the details of her many different lives, including the child of immigrant workers, a broke college roommate who cries too much, a writer of plays and a TV star and director. It seems impossible that a woman this successful could joke about not being able to fit into a size 1 dress at a photo shoot or about going for runs only so she can come up with elaborate revenge plans… but she can, and you will love her for it.
What a refreshing experience it was to learn that Kaling also takes narcissistic photos on her Blackberry and thinks men shouldn’t get their chests waxed. There are so many women role models in Hollywood that, to put it simply, should not be. Her ability to openly admit to millions that her favorite food is a cupcake and that she will eat one whenever she damn pleases puts her at the top of my hero list.
Amidst all of the feel good moments, she does hit a few serious topics like her experiences with bullying and her struggle for years to get a job she didn’t hate, but thanks to her undying need to make people laugh, you can easily see she is better for them.
“I wrote this book in a way that reflects how I think. Sometimes its 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,” she said in the book.
Whichever way she’s telling her life story, I’m sure anyone reading it would be able to enjoy and relate to it. If not, then maybe you can at least learn to take yourself a little less seriously. If you can’t laugh at your self, then you will never be able to take constructive criticism, one of the many things Mindy Kaling preaches throughout Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?