You Can't Joke About That: Why Everything Is Funny, Nothing Is Sacred, and We're All in This Together
What happens when we can’t joke about some of the most important stuff in life?
In a 2019 study, 40% of people reported censoring themselves out of fear that voicing their views would alienate them from the people they care about most. Those people should probably not read this book in public.
In You Can’t Joke About That, Kat Timpf shows why much of the way we talk about sensitive subjects is wrong. We’ve created all the wrong rules. We push ourselves into unnecessary conflicts when we should feel like we’re all in this together. When someone says “you can’t joke about that,” what they really mean is “this is a subject that makes people sad or angry.”
Hilariously and movingly, Timpf argues that those subjects are actually the most important to joke about. She shows us we can find healing through humor regarding things you probably don't want to bring up in polite conversation, like traumatic break-ups, cancer, being broke, Dave Chappelle, rape jokes, aging, ostomy bags, religion, body image, dead moms, religion, the lab leak theory, transgender swimmers, gushing wounds, campus censorship, and bad Christmas presents.
This book is Kat Timpf with her hair down, except since hers is mostly extensions, this book is Kat Timpf with her hair out. Read it because you want to get to know her better. Read it because it’s the best book on free speech and comedy in a generation. Read it because you want to laugh out loud… even at the kind of stuff we’re afraid to say out loud. Just read it, and you’ll be glad you did.
Praise for You Can't Joke About That: Why Everything Is Funny, Nothing Is Sacred, and We're All in This Together
Kat uses her acerbic wit to destroy the mythos that anything is comedically off-limits. She gives me hope for the future of satire and I’m honored to call her my friend. — Ben Kissel, Last Podcast Network
My mom first introduced me to Kat Timpf, and this book shows why I’m so glad she did. Kat delivers biting, savage commentary with enough heart to make it hard to stay mad at her. By targeting everything she’s not supposed to target and laughing at stuff that’s supposed to be too dark, she shows us why it’s important to respect all kinds of speech. — Jerry Only, bassist for the Misfits
In You Can’t Joke About That, Kat Timpf takes us on a personal journey into the power of comedy. With sometimes gross anecdotes and an impeccable use of semicolons, she reminds us that intent and forgiveness matter, free speech is an indispensable cultural value, and laughter is the best medicine for so much of what ails us. I learned a lot about Kat in this book and found myself agreeing throughout, which is genuinely extraordinary. I can’t wait to recommend it to everyone. — Justin Amash, former member of the US House of Representatives
A ruthlessly honest exploration of comedy and cancellation in our era of outrage. By courageously exposing her every foible, Kat, a free-speech absolutist, makes the case that no topic is off-limits. From ostomy bags to death, Kat catapults us through her most extraordinary decade and teaches us that when we give people the freedom to take risks and speak freely, we find connection with those around us. — Dr. Drew, television host, addiction medicine specialist, and New York Times bestselling author of It Doesn’t Have to Be Awkward
Kat Timpf lays herself hysterically bare in her first triumphant book. The best Kat is bare Kat, and this honest and beautifully written love letter to free speech makes me love her even more. — Kennedy, Fox News cultural icon