Sunday, November 20, 2011
MWF seeking BFF
Publisher's Summary. When Rachel Bertsche first moves to Chicago, she’s thrilled to finally share a zip code, let alone an apartment, with her boyfriend. But shortly after getting married, Bertsche realizes that her new life is missing one thing: friends. Sure, she has plenty of BFFs—in New York and San Francisco and Boston and Washington, D.C. Still, in her adopted hometown, there’s no one to call at the last minute for girl talk over brunch or a reality-TV marathon over a bottle of wine. Taking matters into her own hands, Bertsche develops a plan: She’ll go on fifty-two friend-dates, one per week for a year, in hopes of meeting her new Best Friend Forever.
In her thought-provoking, uproarious memoir, Bertsche blends the story of her girl-dates (whom she meets everywhere from improv class to friend rental websites) with the latest social research to examine how difficult—and hilariously awkward—it is to make new friends as an adult. In a time when women will happily announce they need a man but are embarrassed to admit they need a BFF, Bertsche uncovers the reality that no matter how great your love life is, you’ve gotta have friends.
Review. MWF Seeking BFF: Must live in Chicago. Must not bring her dog to lunch dates. Fluency in Entertainment Weekly preferred but not required.
Do you fit the criteria of this personal? If so, you may have a BFF waiting in Rachel Bertsche, author of the above ad and the memoir MWF seeking BFF. Bertsche is not friendless; in fact, she has plenty of friends – just not in Chicago her new home. She settled in the Second City after tying the knot with the love of her life. And while Bertsche’s hubby appears to be a real life Prince Charming (i.e. he buys her jewelry just because) he is also a straight man and ergo not BFF material (e.g. he does not like to watch Project Runway or dissect Bertsche’s latest office crisis).
So Bertsche sets out to find a local amigo by going out on 52 different friend dates, one a week, over the course of a year. In search of her Chicago BFF soulmate, Bertsche leaves no stone unturned, besides posting the personal, she: meets friends of friends; goes out with coworkers and yoga class colleagues; joins clubs galore including an Improv group and two book clubs; stalks Meet Up; speed dates for friends; hires a galpal matchmaker; and even employs a “rent-a-friend” (yes, there is such a service).
MWF seeking BFF is a funny and engaging account of a young woman’s search for the Laverne to her Shirley. But what I particularly liked about this memoir, however, is the subject matter. Because while there are thousands (or more) of books devoted to the search for a romantic partner, rare is the memoir that involves a quest for friendship. Moreover, Bertsche is happily married and her mother (whom she adores) lives minutes away. She also keeps in close touch with her out-of-town BFFs. Still Bertsche feels a friendship void and isn’t afraid to devote herself to filling the gap.
With the holidays approaching, here’s a gift tip: buy MWF seeking BFF for your best friend (inscribed with a note of thanks) or, better yet, give it to a BFF to be!
Review based on advance copy provided courtesy of the publisher.