If the title isn’t obvious enough, Wet Goddess: Recollection of a Dolphin Lover is a self-published memoir about a man’s relationship with a dolphin. I won’t go into detail about how the, um, love story turns out as this is a family blog, but I’ll just say that it’s not for the easily offended…or weak stomached. And while the subject matter might be unsettling and off-putting to most, it’s absolutely perfect for Sara Bynoe monthly event, Say Wha?!, in which comedians and actors gather to read excepts from truly awful literature.
Now in it’s third year, the show is described as a mix of storytelling and standup. The original idea came when Bynoe was vacationing in Bath and came across a romance novel in her hostel called Dark Avenger. Despite being laughably terrible, the book was compelling enough that Bynoe ended up referring to it the entire weekend.
Since the local writer and improviser already put on a night where people read from their teenaged diaries, Bynoe’s friends encouraged her to put on a similar event where more horrible literature could be celebrated.
Since Say Wha?! was launched in June 2010, Bynoe has made it her calling to collect as many terrible books as possible, which she then shares at her night. As a result, her library includes such canons as How to Pick Up Topless Dancers, Tyra Bank’s Modelland and of course, 50 Shades of Grey.
“We do everything from self help books to bestsellers,” she says. “Anything that’s celebrity-penned is pretty fair game too.”
Bynoe describes the Say Wha?! audience as a group of people with “a good sense of humour who are quite smart”.
“I’ve been asked why it’s not part of the Writer’s Festival,” she laughs. “I tell them that’s it’s much more of a comedy, than a literary event.”
And fyi – the author of Wet Goddess tuned into the show where his book was read, as it was being live streamed. His feedback?
“He said he never realized his book was so unintentionally hilarious,” Bynoe says.
Say Wha?! takes place at Cottage Bistro, 4468 Main Street, on the third Wednesday of every month. The next one takes place on November 21st from 8 p.m. – 10 p.m. Cover is $5-10 at the door, sliding scale.