Mess: One Man's Struggle To Clean Up His House And His Act by Barry YourgrauMess: One Man's Struggle To Clean Up His House And His Act by Barry Yourgrau

Mess: One Man's Struggle To Clean Up His House And His Act

byBarry Yourgrau

Paperback | July 26, 2016

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Millions of Americans struggle with severe clutter and hoarding. New York writer and bohemian Barry Yourgrau is one of them. Behind the door of his Queens apartment, Yourgrau’s life is, quite literally, chaos. Confronted by his exasperated girlfriend, a globe-trotting food critic, he embarks on a heartfelt, wide-ranging, and too often uproarious project—part Larry David, part Janet Malcolm—to take control of his crammed, disorderly apartment and life, and to explore the wider world of collecting, clutter, and extreme hoarding.

Encounters with a professional declutterer, a Lacanian shrink, and Clutterers Anonymous—not to mention England’s most excessive hoarder—as well as explorations of the bewildering universe of new therapies and brain science, help Yourgrau navigate uncharted territory: clearing shelves, boxes, and bags; throwing out a nostalgic cracked pasta bowl; and sorting through a lifetime of messy relationships. Mess is the story of one man’s efforts to learn to let go, to clean up his space (physical and emotional), and to save his relationship.

Writer-performer Barry Yourgrau is the author of acclaimed books of brief fiction, including Wearing Dad's Head and The Sadness of Sex, in whose film version he starred. He’s appeared on MTV and NPR, and written for the New York Times, Huffington Post, Paris Review, and Vice, among others. Born in South Africa, he lives in New York and...
Title:Mess: One Man's Struggle To Clean Up His House And His ActFormat:PaperbackDimensions:256 pages, 8.2 × 5.4 × 0.6 inPublished:July 26, 2016Publisher:WW NortonLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0393352900

ISBN - 13:9780393352900


Editorial Reviews

An absorbing look at a mysterious compulsion. — PeopleIn his droll, engaging memoir,…[Yourgrau] writes with self-mocking humor as he embarks on a project to get rid of his clutter once and for all. — Wall Street JournalTerrifically funny…What can we say: Hoarders seem to be hot. — USA TodayYourgrau sets out to understand the literal and emotional weight of the objects we save…[A] gorgeous writer. — New York Times Book ReviewBattling his hoarding proclivities with aplomb, Yourgrau documents his winding journey to unpack his home and mind. — O, The Oprah MagazineMess is Barry Yourgrau’s autobiography by way of neurosis, a twenty-first-century version of the Confessions of Zeno. Sometimes shocking and frequently self-mocking, it charts the tough negotiation between shame and fixation, between clinging to the past and moving forward, between being devoured by one’s demons and facing them down. — Andrew Solomon, author of Far from the TreeAll of us who live—or have lived—in unmentionable and unspeakable abodes owe it to ourselves to have our anti-domestic pathologies turned into something as funny and charming as Mess. — Lawrence Osborne, author of The ForgivenA funny, smart, and moving memoir about the accumulation of STUFF: what it means to us, why we keep it, and how we deal with our personal ‘collections.’ (Great book, btw.) — Roz Chast, author of Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?My favorite Bohemian unpacks his life, and his heart. I will never look at clutter the same way again. I love this book! — Gary Shteyngart, author of Little FailureBarry Yourgrau is America’s Kafka, if Kafka were hysterically funny, weirdly relatable, and had just a little bit of a hoarding problem. Mess is a total Yourgrau feast—I wept with laughter (but then why couldn’t I throw away my Kleenex?). — Sandra Tsing Loh, author of The Madwoman in the Volvo