Friday, October 18, 2013
Review: Not Taco Bell Material
Not Taco Bell Material by Adam Carolla
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Fans of Adam will enjoy this. Others perhaps a bit less so. I enjoyed it thoroughly. Adam delves into his lackluster, challenging childhood and adolescence, shares anecdotes of poverty and teenage mayhem, and cites the many crappy jobs he endured after high school. Many jokes, asides, tan gents (no, that's not a typo; it's two words), and rants along the way.
What I DIDN'T like about this book is that Adam mentioned but then neglected to explain some of the key developments in his life (such as meeting Jimmy Kimmel) because he expoused on them ad nauseum in his first book IN FIFTY YEARS WE'LL ALL BE CHICKS. For some reason, I read NOT TACO BELL MATERIAL first. So I'm now reading CHICKS after having completed TACO BELL. It is indeed filling in the gaps.
Whereas CHICKS is (thus far) a lot of ranting similar to Adam's former morning radio gig (which I always enjoyed) and cultural criticism/deconstruction, NOT TACO BELL MATERIAL is more an examination of his life as viewed from where he is now. Being a well-qualified carpenter, Adam structures the book chronologically according to the houses he lived in through his life, culminating in the million-dollar fixer-upper he lives in today (which he personally rescued).
What I MOST liked about this book is that Adam presents a compelling example of how a kid with all the cards stacked against him busted his ass to make something of himself when no one would have blamed him one bit if he'd simply rolled over and accepted his poverty-stricken lot in life. While I do question some of Adam's descriptions of his various exploits because there are always two sides to every story, for the most part he comes across as a straight-shooter who is not afraid to call it like it is, particularly when it comes to the pussification of America and the decline of many elements of society.
NOT TACO BELL MATERIAL is a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to Adam's next book he announced on Leno in September 2013: PRESIDENT ME. That should be interesting. If Jesse Venture and Howard Stern can take the White House in 2016, I hope Adam is part of the administration. ;)
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