Consider this: A father who wakes up at night screaming from nightmares of Nazis. A mother debilitated by Multiple Sclerosis, still only 37. A family embittered and devastated by illness and grief. Siblings who haven’t spoken for decades. A boy who cannot contain his rage and contracts illnesses and injuries on a weekly basis. This is the kind of material writers with grey flecked beards worth their sensitive weight turn into Oprah’s Book Club selections.
In Hyper-chondriac: One Man’s Quest to Hurry Up and Calm Down Brian Frazer forsakes this route and takes an interesting detour. He tells us about his family, his life and his friends. But mostly he tells us about his own devastated self. Only he’s funny. Laugh out loud funny.
Calling himself a hyper-chondriac (he’s afflicted with everything like a hypochondriac but his illnesses are real!), Frazer frantically seeks help by trying out a variety of alternatives. He tries Food Coaching, Kabala, Buddhist Silence Camp, Tai-chi, Ayurveda, Knitting and Reiki. He even invents his own form of therapy called “What would Kenyon do?” – Kenyon being his little terrier.
Writing in a style loosely based on standup and improv routines, Frazer infuses his humor with the rage that pervades his life. He skewers everyone with almost savage hilarity – but without losing our empathy.