Sedaris' speaking voice, in case you've never heard it, is like no other human's—it's got this distinct cadence, dotted by awkward pauses and apparent non sequiturs, and because of its odd pitch and slightly singsongy quirkiness, it's hard to place the speaker as younger or older, male or female. He says he has given up correcting hotel clerks who routinely address him on the phone as Mrs. Sedaris.
In his best-selling, beloved books—Owls is his eighth—he's rocketed off innumerable zingers about everyone from his now-deceased mother, his 90-year-old father, his siblings (especially his long-suffering sisters) and his partner, Hugh, to oversharing strangers and pretty much the whole of China. Still, in conversation, as in his writing, he is thoughtful and sweet in addition to being slyly hilarious
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