Brad Yung is best known for writing and drawing the alternative comic strip Stay as you are. He has also been an engineering student, a screenwriter, a toy store clerk, a zinester, a computer programmer, a merchandiser, an actor, a data collection associate, and now an author. He is proud of roughly half of those.
Lessons I’m Going To Teach My Kids Too Late
101 standalone lessons link through common themes of parenting, being parented, or knowing someone who was. Taken together, several storylines emerge: the author’s relationship with his mother, his crumbling marriage, his wrestling with his Chinese heritage, his love for his kids, and the decades-old death of his father.
Brad Yung intends to teach his kids these lessons in a roundabout, backwards, overly-complicated fashion, after they would actually be of any use. From bullying to discipline, democracy to old friends, ice cream to newsradio, and grandmothers to first love, these reminiscences cover topics that we all experience in our lives, and some we hope we won’t, all from a rather unique point of view.
The author drew heavily from his own life writing this book, mining his past and speculating on his kids’ futures, alternately reaching out for help and lashing out, but saving his sharpest criticisms and considerations for his mother, the universe, and himself.
Understatedly funny, tragic and sad, wistfully longing and steeped in regret, but ultimately hopeful, uplifting, and insightful, Lessons I’m Going To Teach My Kids Too Late almost succeeds in not being a self-help parenting book, but not for lack of trying.
The Complete Stay as you are
When the emperor wore plaid and people still hung phones on walls, Brad Yung’s weekly comic strip Stay as you are. was a beacon to the slacker generation that bathed in irony and rejected everything else.
A true underground underdog, the strip appeared in photocopied zines, alternative weeklies, small-town newspapers, and a few national magazines. Too savage, too biting, its targets too spread out and numerous to mention, the strip knew it was never going to achieve mainstream success and didn’t care.
The Complete Stay as you are. honours these remnants of a simpler, yet more complicated time. A reviewer once called Yung the world’s first meta-ironist — if that’s true, he should probably apologize. But he won’t.