Doug Stanhope is one of the most critically acclaimed and stridently unrepentant comedians of his generation. What will surprise some is that he owes so much of his dark and sometimes uncomfortably honest sense of humor to his mother, Bonnie. It was the cartoons in HER Hustler magazine issues that molded the beginnings of his comedic journey, long before he was old enough to know what to do with the actual pornography. It was Bonnie who recited Monty Python sketches with him, who introduced him to Richard Pryor at nine years old, and who rescued him from a psychologist when he brought that brand of humor to school. And it was Bonnie who took him along to all of her AA meetings, where Doug undoubtedly found inspiration for his own storytelling.
Bonnie’s own journey from bartending to truck driving, massage therapy, elder abuse, and stand-up comedy and acting never stopped her from being Doug’s genuine number one fan. So when Bonnie’s alcoholic, hoarding life finally came to an end so many weird adventures later in rural Arizona, it was inevitable that Doug and Bonnie would be together for one last journey.
Digging Up Mother follows Doug’s absurd, chaotic, and often obscene life as it intersects with that of his best friend, his biggest fan, and the love of his life: his mother, Bonnie. And it all starts with her death – one of the most memorable and amazing farewells you will ever hear.
BONUS: As fans of his stand-up and listeners of his podcast will attest, Doug is not a “by-the-book” type of guy. This audiobook is no exception. In what he refers to as the “director’s cut commentary,” Doug forgoes the confines of a straight-read and creates a truly unique listening experience, going off-script to riff throughout its sections and bringing in a cast of colorful characters – childhood friends, his podcast co-host, and fellow comedians and musicians – to voice letters from teachers and guidance counselors, diary entries from his mother, and even old homework assignments. Additionally, Doug has several of the folks mentioned in the book expound on and give their version of events and stories, often remembered quite differently. The result is a wildly fun audiobook that’s as distinct as the comedian’s own brand of humor.