Exploring ‘Happy Accidents’

With a forward by Carol Burnett, the serendipitous events of Jane Lynch’s life are told by the comedian in her 2011 memoir, “Happy Accidents,” published by Hyperion.

I had to admit I started this book about a year and half ago. It has taken a very long time to finish this because the weather was beautiful – in other words it went from spring to summer, which means I spent all my time outdoors in a bathing suit. Whenever I could, I would be in the lake sitting in my bathing suit in my manual wheelchair for as long as I could stand sitting up in the water.

But back to the book. Jane Lynch is one of the stars of the Fox TV series “Glee,” one of my favorite shows. And Lynch is absolutely one of my favorite characters in the show. She has a terrific, self-deprecating energy that I find very appealing. She has that same energy as the author of her life story. I found myself smiling often and laughing out loud at times, which is a rarity when I’m reading.

My aide, Shannon, read this book after me in just two days. And we both loved the book.

Lynch chronicles her life by telling about outstanding events that occurred. Most of what she relates winds up being very funny. Lynch talks about the fact that she and her sister had very different personalities. For example, her sister Julie, who was much more serious than her, had told her at the breakfast table, “OK! Get all the goofiness out now, before we got school. Now! Get it out! Get it out! Get it out!”

Lynch’s decisions about her sexuality are told in a very matter-of-fact way. She said she always knew she was gay but was afraid to say anything to her family. But upon telling her parents, they reacted in a positive way, which surprised Shannon and I. I felt at times it was like reading someone’s diary. It was a very personal account of her life.

She talks a lot about the ups and downs of her career. The most stable character she played was a therapist on “Two and a-Half Men.” First her character worked with the character of Jake, then Alan, and finally with Charlie, which was the funniest of the three, in my opinion.

In 2009, she got a role in “Glee” and has won several awards. She has also done some work with film director Christopher Guest, which I’m not too familiar with, but I’m a devoted fan of “Glee,” as is Shannon.

If you’re not too familiar with Lynch check her out on “Glee.” It will be worth your while.

Kathryn Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career in New York City and Los Angeles, now pursues freelance writing from Caroga Lake. Previous columns and contact information may be accessed at her website