Joe Rusin Admires Sarah Vowell So Much, He Doesn’t Find Her Voice Annoying (Anymore) [XXOO]
Sarah Vowell is one of my favorite writers. Period. When I first heard her read some of her work on THIS AMERICAN LIFE, I found her voice annoying, and ignored her for a long time. Then I forced myself to actually listen to her, and fell in love with her essays that mix humor, personal experience, and American History.
In her telling of one historical event, General Lafayette’s tour of America during his twilight years, she reduced me to tears. And I’ve re-listened to it, and cried again. And again. Not because it’s sad, but because she manages to find in history the human soul. And she makes me so pleased to be an American, embracing both our historical shames and triumphs.
She is a writer of ideas and heart, and can be as funny as David Sedaris, but also much more poignant. And after reading her and listening to her again, I find her voice isn’t really that annoying, it’s just different. And in Sarah Vowell’s America, there is plenty of room for people to be different.