Swish: My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever (2020)

Swish: My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever Joel Derfner Swish My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever Joel Derfner is gayer than you Don t feel too bad about it though because he has made being gayer than you his life s work At summer day camp when he was six Derfner tried to sign up for needlepoi
  • Title: Swish: My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever
  • Author: Joel Derfner
  • ISBN: 9780767924306
  • Page: 369
  • Format: Hardcover
Swish: My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever Joel Derfner Joel Derfner is gayer than you.Don t feel too bad about it, though, because he has made being gayer than you his life s work At summer day camp, when he was six, Derfner tried to sign up for needlepoint and flower arranging, but the camp counselors wouldn t let him, because, they said, those activities were for girls only Derfner, just to be contrary, embarked that veryJoel Derfner is gayer than you.Don t feel too bad about it, though, because he has made being gayer than you his life s work At summer day camp, when he was six, Derfner tried to sign up for needlepoint and flower arranging, but the camp counselors wouldn t let him, because, they said, those activities were for girls only Derfner, just to be contrary, embarked that very day on a solemn and sacred quest to become the gayest person ever Along the way he has become a fierce knitter, an even fiercer musical theater composer, and so totally the fiercest step aerobics instructor just ask him he ll tell you himself.In Swish, Derfner takes his readers on a flamboyant adventure along the glitter strewn road from fabulous to divine Whether he s confronting the demons of his past at a GLBT summer camp, using the Internet to meet men many, many men or plunging headfirst and nearly naked into the shady world of go go dancing, he reveals himself with every gayer than thou flourish to be not just a stylish explorer but also a fearless one So fearless, in fact, that when he sneaks into a conference for people who want to cure themselves of their homosexuality, he turns the experience into one of the most fascinating, deeply moving chapters of the book Derfner, like King Arthur, Christopher Columbus, and Indiana Jones but with a better haircut and a much deeper commitment to fad diets is a hero destined for legend.Written with wicked humor and keen insight, Swish is at once a hilarious look at contemporary ideas about gay culture and a poignant exploration of identity that will speak to all readers gay, straight, and in between.
Swish: My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever Joel Derfner

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    Posted by:Joel Derfner
    Published :2020-01-05T22:23:30+00:00

One thought on “Swish: My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever

  1. Emma Sea

    I sobbed, I laughed, I couldn t put the book down Only a poet could combine orgies, go go dancing, and Nazi death camps God, that makes it sound terrible and exploitative and horrendous, but it s not It s charming and hopeful and entirely about the tender human spirit.All my friends read this book.

  2. Schmacko

    Let s admit it a part of gay life especially of stereotypically gay culture is so moronic that it s inadvertently hilarious.We can find a few easy examples On sexual conquests when one considers the momentary pleasure of the actual orgasm, the drive to sleep with absolutely everyone just seems stupid On dizzy queens we all personally know at least one wisp of a thing who can name every guest star on Facts of Life but cannot hold onto a job at the mall for than a few days Yes, the culturally gay [...]

  3. Shannon

    This book is seriously hilarious Not just because of the Oh, I m so gay listen to some of my gay antics part though that is there too, especially in the beginning few chapters of the book, about knitting and cheerleading etc But also because, as the book goes on and of his insights have, really, nothing to do with his gayness Ultimately his book shows that even someone who is by their own admission , a flaming stereotype is not JUST that I mean, obviously I know this, most people I associate w [...]

  4. Mel

    As we stumble around searching for Truth, the best we can do is to remind one another, when we collide, that there are moments in which we are not alone.SWISH is Joel Derfner s story of his life, searching for Truth, for himself It s the most honest account of a human being I ve ever read I can t but being awed at what he is letting us see of himself, and with that making it possible to find pieces of ourselves in it.Each chapter of this book has a central theme or event of Joel s life, and with [...]

  5. Daniel

    If I hadn t already trapped a man I think I would totally stalk this guy This book was sweet, sad, refreshing, hopeful and at times made me extremely uncomfortable It is crazy to me when I read a book and I think something along the lines of, This guy gets it And we have so much in common, most of it not falling under the category of good I totally want to hang out with him , but when this happens I feel connected and that makes me feel a bit peaceful Not a small thing.

  6. Ulysses Dietz

    SwishBy Joel DerfnerFour starsThis is not a funny book Oh, yeah, I laughed There is much that is amusing in Joel Derfner s wry memoir about being gay today in America.But really, this book is heartbreaking This is a look into a gay man s soul Some of what he shows us is not pretty, Some of it is, on the other hand, beautiful I spent a third of my time reading this book wanting to take Derfner in my arms to comfort him Another third was wanting to take him by the shoulders and shake some sense in [...]

  7. Scott

    This book put me on a bit of a roller coaster I was definitely rolling my eyes why did I get on this crappy ride , giggling along with the humor oohhh, this is better than I thought it would be , and then ready to get off the ending was just that up down up down to finish it off.The start of the book was annoying too much bitchy queen, too much cover my insecurity with funny hateful remarks The worthwhile part of the book is the middle when the author opens up and comes off with honesty insecur [...]

  8. Christina

    There was so much I liked about this book I think Joel Derfner is one of the most endearing, relatable autobiographical writers I ve ever read I loved his blend of humor, neuroticism and insecurity He s very smart, accomplished, and witty and yet also self deprecating, and he draws some interesting connections between seemingly seperate aspects of his life.I chuckled LOTS while reading this, but it s not all fun and games there s a lot of seriousness, a little self pity, and even melancholy Ther [...]

  9. Christopher Giroir

    Homophobes stay away Otherwise this book is extremely fun and a very interesting read for someone who is very far away from the lifestyle If you like documentaries that look into people s lives that are very different from yours, you re probably the type of person that would enjoy reading this.

  10. Eric

    He s funny, he s smart, he s talented and he s adorable gorgeous And he s an incredible writer with a gift for taking his intriguing life and making it seem as interesting on the page You ll laugh one minute and dissolve into tears the next.

  11. Karen

    This one really surprised me I was looking for light and funny and ended up with a sweet, very introspective well thought out book.

  12. Alice

    Sigh I really wanted to like this book, because I am a lady who appreciates high camp, Ru Paul s Drag Race, Charles Busch films and other super gay pursuits But this narrator was SO ANNOYING He is super insecure, and is constantly talking about how he feels like everyone hates him, people think he s ugly, he hates anyone who he feels is smarter or cuter than him, etc I get that social anxiety is a serious problem, but when I m reading a book about super gay things, I do not want to read about so [...]

  13. Charles

    My friend Leslie gave me this over the weekend, and I took it with me to PTown Sunday night It s gay alright, but also really a well done biography of a person s understanding of who he is and why He has chapters on Dating and Step Aerobics and Musical Theater and Knitting, but when he is writing about how he likes to knit, he actually gets pretty deep into his relationship with his mother When he writes about going to adult gay camp, he gets into how it felt to be an adolescent and the lasting [...]

  14. Mark

    I was really surprised by this book Derfner did a great job weaving seamingly shallow things together with much deeper views on life He did a great job of setting up a low expectation with the self deprecating talk in the introduction, making the reader think he was just cranking something out for egotistic reasons, but he is a much better writer than he let on.Each chapter was an essay focussed around a theme, such as knitting, go go dancing, and teaching aerobics It is not a chronology of his [...]

  15. EmmaKaufmann

    An enjoyable book written by a gay guy who is so honest it hurts but in a good way Derfner is a very likeable guy who anyone would like to have as a friend He is especially endearing because his attempts to be liked working as a Go Go boy and allowing his penis to be fondled, being a professional cheerleader etc are very touching The chapter on him infiltrating the Exodus conference, where gays go to try and turn straight was very illuminating and showed one thing it is practically impossible to [...]

  16. Taylor

    Swish is a delightful little romp, advertised as a man s quest to become the gayest person ever, and packaged as such, with chapters on knitting, aerobics instruction, and go go dancing But instead of being a shallow, if funny, look into sterotypical homosexuality, it is a much nuanced memoir, tackling issues like the early death of Derfner s mother and his struggles with obsessive compulsive disorder That isn t to say it isn t funny, because it is very, very funny But instead of being a waste [...]

  17. Lee Wind

    I laughed out loud a LOT reading this collection of essays Joel s very brave to reveal so much about himself and his somewhat seedy and very swishy journey A lot of the things he put himself through reminded me of Michael Moore s documentary filmmaking style like, hey, I m writing a book about trying to be really gay, so I ll join a cheerleading squad, and I ll become a go go dancer As I read it, though, cracks in the humor let me see the deep sadness and depression this guy went through at the [...]

  18. Vance

    The title makes this book seem like something that just escaped from the Humor shelf but the book itself save the final chapter is a brutal but always intelligent self examination of one gay man s life, which like all good autobiography expands the humanity of all people who read it In many ways, it s a book I wish I had written, which is something I rarely say The last chapter, though, is about trying to capture an experience versus analyzing an experience in retrospect , which is how the rest [...]

  19. Scott

    This book was recommended to me by a friend and I really liked it I went into reading Swish with thought it would be a purely comical collection of essays Instead, what I discovered is that Joel Derfner has written a thoughtful book in which I could indentify with While there were plenty of times I laughed out loud reading Swish, there were times when I found myself relating to Joel and the way he experienced life I am looking forward to reading from him in the future.

  20. Ron

    I was pleasantly surprised by this I thought I was going to read some airplane fluff about some gay guys thoughts on stereotypically shallow gay subjects Although each piece started out that way, he always went deeper into the subject, sometimes on a personal level and other times on why those subjects are so prevalent in gay society The chapter on going under cover at an Exodus retreat was especially thought provoking.

  21. Mary

    Unexpectedly fantastic read Funny where appropriate, but Derfner takes the reader on a sentimental and thoughtful journey The final chapter on his experience with Exodus is very insightful and gives the reader plenty to think about gay or not Derfner knows how to make himself and his stories relatable, by exposing flaws and vulnerabilities Highly recommended.

  22. Amanda

    This book is so freaking good and absolutely nothing like the fairy princess adventure I expected it to be I held my hand to my mouth and cried silent, unbreathing tears than once I felt a dancing joy at asah and bara And while I can t be gay, I can love and loathe myself as much as the next guy as much as Joel Derfner.

  23. John

    Incredibly well written, funny book Derfner does seem rather shallow at times, but he s also aware of it, and comes from such a self loathing backround not specifically about sexuality that I was able to get past that Certainly recommended, and here s hoping he has a contract for another book in the works

  24. Kim

    What a fun book Written in the style of David Sedaris, this book is equally hysterically funny, and profoundly insightful His chapter on music composition was particularly thought provoking Read this

  25. Kit

    Very good The author although not the gayest person ever is hilarious and extremely intelligent Also, he went to graduate school to study musical theatre composition Awesome

  26. Jenn Jett-elton

    This book did what I always wanted David Sedaris to do, but he never did If anyone ever summarized my gender, it is this author working out, knitting, cheerleading, social anxiet , it s all there.

  27. Jennie

    I was slightly confused by the shortened title of the Kindle edition, Swish A Quest, but after reading Joel Derfner s explanation I think he made the right choice in paring it down I absolutely love the original title, but it sounds a bit like a joke In fact when I told my husband what I was reading he laughed hysterically because he thought I was kidding, No, that s really the title I explained, which inspired laughter Anyways, I really enjoyed this book, it s lovely I thought it struck just t [...]

  28. Emily

    Derfner has a very strong writing voice, and is extremely witty and unapologetic about being an intellectual albeit one who is a qualified step aerobics instructor all of these facts are to be commended The first chapters of the book did occasionally rely a bit too much on using the phrase no one loves me or some such variation Additionally, there are sections taken directly from his blog, but hey, we live in a greener age supposedly so literary recycling can t be all that bad There are also num [...]

  29. Cameron

    Though I knew I would have to bow to Joel Derfner s assertion that he himself is the gayest person ever, and that I could not claim that title for myself or risk being labeled a mimetic fraud, I was quickly mollified by his absolutely charming prose and deft wit with words I about orgasmed when he inserted adroitly my absolute favorite signifier of logophilia the word shibboleths Transcending catty and tawdry avowals of boys past and socks knit, Derfner explores many subjects that seem on the su [...]

  30. Shana

    Finished Swish My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever by Joel Derfner yesterday I went into reading it with the mindset that it would be horribly stereotypical and for that reason, funny I wasn t wrong The writing itself, while witty, wasn t as engaging as I would have liked I m all for self deprecating humor but it got to be a bit too much After a while, I just wanted to scream, YES, I get it You want to be the most popular prettiest best gay ever GEEZ That said, there were some shining mome [...]

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