Okay Fine Whatever

Okay Fine Whatever

The Year I Went From Being Afraid of Everything to Only Being Afraid of Most Things

Book - 2018
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The veteran host and head writer of "Live Wire" traces her lifelong battle with anxiety and the year she spent challenging herself to face her fears in remarkable ways, with hilarious results.
Publisher: New York : Little, Brown and Company, 2018
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780316395700
Branch Call Number: 818.602 H176H 2018
Characteristics: vii, 307 pages ; 22 cm


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Feb 27, 2019

This is my first “year of yes” book although a friend’s Shonda Rhimes has lain woefully on my bedside floor for many months. I was drawn to the cover that is bright yellow with a cool font, retro image, and endorsement from Cheryl Strayed. This book is humorous and mainly focused on the year and a half when the author, Courtenay Hameister, embarked on an Okay Fine Whatever approach to overcoming her relationship/dating/sex fears (eg. online dating, polyamory, sex club). Her NPR credentials, sassy tone, and Portlandia-esque situations (homegirl dates a lot of quirky dudes with beards) make for an enjoyable read. I liked that she is in her 40’s, shares her anxiety issues and fears of being alone, her honesty around past mistakes, and her openness discussing shame and attempts at self-acceptance around body image.

Jan 23, 2019

The writing style of this book is fine. The read is uncomfortable. While I didn't finish this book, I did get several chapters in.

The author branches out in order to not let anxiety control her life to the extent it has already. This is great. But she doesn't seem to ever become comfortable or glad to be doing any of it. Each chapter feels like she's getting out of her comfort zone solely to think about how she wants to stop or holds the pace up by making observations that aren't relevant.

One such example is a paragraph about a dancer's vulva and the sizes of her labia.The author evens notes there isn't a reason to talk at such length about it.

Later she interviews a man about polyamory and flat out refers to it as cheating (to his face, no less). She goes on to write about not wanting a married man's kids to see her with him, because she doesn't want to be the reason he has to explain polyamory to them. And that it would be traumatizing for the kids.

Not that seeing a naked woman was specifically traumatizing. But a woman that wasn't their mom.

Treating polyamory as if it's upsetting for children and somehow a bad thing to tell them about? Reminds me of how many people act as though children shouldn't be told about gay people (while these same people say they aren't homophobic). Polyamory isn't any more inherently sexual or deviant than monogamy.

Those chapters reeked of this weird novetly/titillating taboo vibe as opposed to trying to understand (or participate) and overall turned me off from wanting to participate in her journey. There's more to it all than that but it pushed the book from a frustrating read to a bad read.

I hope the author feels better after her year of exploration. I also hope in the future she treats people with different identities and jobs than her as if they aren't oddball entertainment.

Nov 28, 2018

This is one of those I did this for a year and wrote about it. Uninspired. Local author.


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