After spending almost 8 hours with Tyler Oakley (yes, I listened to the audiobook) I feel like we’ve bonded a lot. I feel like I’ve actually learned something from this book, between the funny anecdotes there were some real life lessons here. The funny anecdotes were engaging stories that kept me hooked to this book. You see, the book is like a series of his Youtube videos, but in book-form. It’s by no means high-brow literature, but it is funny.
Tyler Oakley is actually one of my favourite YouTube-personas. He’s witty, weird and seems honest. And don’t get me the wrong way, but while he is gay – it is not the only thing he can talk about. But when he talks about it, it’s brilliant. And he talks about it a loooot in this book. Tyler writes with substance as well as plenty of humour. He discusses his experiences with eating disorders, suicidal thoughts, abusive relationships, coming out to a religious parent, his career and his slow rise to fame in the world of social media. Tyler shared that he wrote Binge with the wish to demonstrate “the value of taking chances, pushing beyond our comfort levels, dusting ourselves off after our inevitable humiliations, and remaining open to the life and feelings and possibilities that are happening while we are busy either chasing phantoms of success or trying to outrun our fears.” – I liked that a lot, and I personally think he succeeded. Despite the fact that Tyler candidly shared both work and personal life in a very eloquent and nice way: I love that somehow what I learned from Tyler in this book is that it’s very important to keep work and personal separated (at times).
Tyler self-narrated and spoke directly to the listener, even letting the reader know if there was a screenshot or something they were visually missing in which case he tried to summarize/describe it the best he could. This also explains my lack of photo of the cover on this blog, which is a shame because I think it’s a really neatly made book.
Here are a few of my favourite quotes:
“A good mom is supportive of you but the best moms are supportive of your growth. Even when it doesn’t seem like they’re on your side, great mothers are on the side of your becoming a better person and you’ll be so much better off in the long run. So pull out your flip phone and text a quick thank you to your mom. She has your best interest at heart even if you are sometimes a dick.”
“No person, no matter how important society deems their relationship to you, has the right to denounce you for who you are.”
And of course:
“Binge on giving, in all senses. Binge on indulging. We’re told every day from an early age that moderation is key. Count your calories, wait a while before you tell someone you love them, and remember that balance is the path to happiness. While all of those are great in theory, does a lesson taught from someone else’s mistakes resonate just as deeply as the ones you learn yourself? When you binge, you find your own boundaries.”