Brad Graber’s What’s That Growing In My Sour Cream? is a light hearted discussion revolving around many topics, but which centers mostly on the discussion of ageing. Based on his online blog publications, Graber writes humorous and tongue-in-cheek life observations, although not without some underlying form of graveness which makes the short entries relatable and affable.
Graber’s discussions are based on his life and the observations made on his surroundings. He discusses topics such as pets, travel, friendly gatherings, movie theaters, driving, spicy food, and caring for toenails in tone of amusement, even though at times Graber finds the space to delve into momentarily serious reflection on universal and rather sad subjects, such as the death of a parent, partner, or of a pet, and also American gun control laws. As he states in his introduction, he finds he is “fascinated by the human condition” in all of its contradictions and quirks. He brings this observational fascination at times into a comedy that is quite Seinfeldian (when Seinfeld is at his best). I am referring particularly to “The Traveling Big Head Show Coming to a Theater Near You”, “What’s the Deal With The Soda?”, and “Awkward Man Hugs”, which already read like part of a scripted episode.
The writing is written in small entries often less than 100 words long, and these entries might follow through sometimes in continuation of a particular theme, which makes their separation a bit unnecessary. There is a mid-book surge of gratitude towards readers, which is quite nice, as well as several references (and contextual pitches) to his first book, The Intersect (of which an excerpt of the first two chapters is offered at the end). As this novel is a milestone in Graber’s personal and professional life, it gets a pass for otherwise being a blatant commercial in a comedic blog.
The process of ageing seems to be the main theme for most of these entries, and some short acute discussions are made such as to how once you have reached a certain age, your opinions are deemed irrelevant, and compares the generation of baby boomers of the present to the 80s. Although this is an emotional discussion for many, Graber seems to write with a slightly forgiving impartiality and detached amusement. Some other widely broached topics are food, cooking, eating, and overall grocery shopping consumerism.
Overall, Brad Graber’s book is an amusing read. It doesn’t quite stand out from the wide variety of other comedy blogs or books as much, and caters mainly to middle-class, senior white men, but it does speak on universal subjects. The overall tone is cheery and touches upon several subjects, and it is worth reading if you are looking for an entertaining blog-style read to take up your time and perhaps identify with. In addition, you can read the first two chapter of his book The Intersect if you are so inclined.
Freelance content writer, editor, and translator with a literature MA. I'm passionate about all kinds of literature and art. I enjoy editing, reading, and writing creative and informative content to the best of my abilities. Originality, insight, and entertainment are priorities for me. #Scifi