- Paperback: 336 pages
- Publisher: Spiegel & Grau; Reprint edition (May 31, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0812981898
- ISBN-13: 978-0812981896
- Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.7 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 240 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #178,182 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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They Call Me Baba Booey Paperback – May 31, 2011
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“Hilarious, sincere, and wrenching.”—GQ
“Equal parts amazing and amusing . . . Fans will eat up the mortifying moments of [Dell’Abate’s] twenty-seven-year ride with the wildly popular and influential Stern show. . . . But it is the stories of extreme family dysfunction that give the book surprising heart.”—NJ.com
“Dell’Abate [has] pulled back the curtain [and his fans] will be pleasantly surprised.”—Entertainment Weekly
“Gary’s chronicle of how he developed the skills to survive a household shaken by both mental illness and the seismic shifts of the sixties, and of how he’s applied those skills to accommodate Howard and the gang, is nothing less than fascinating.”—Dr. Drew Pinsky
“Following the simple plan outlined in this book, I lost fifteen pounds and became a happier wife and better mother.”—Howard Stern
“If you think your family is nuts, wait until you read this story.”—Joan Rivers
About the Author
Gary Dell’Abate is the producer of The Howard Stern Show and co-hosts The Wrap-Up Show on Sirius XM Radio. He and his wife, Mary, have two sons, Jackson and Lucas, and live in Connecticut.
Chad Millman is a vice president at ESPN, where he also serves as editorial director of domestic digital. He is also the author of seven books: The Ones Who Hit the Hardest with Shawn Coyne, a bestseller about the blood feud between the 1970s Steelers and Cowboys; the New York Times–bestselling They Call Me Baba Booey with Gary Dell’Abate; Iceman: My Fighting Life, with Chuck Liddell; and The Odds, about a trio of Vegas bookmakers and bettors. Visit his website at chadmillman.com.
Top customer reviews
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A great deal of the book was about his mother's bouts with mental illness and how it shaped him, as well as losing his brother to AIDS. I think you have to come to this with compassion in order to enjoy it and with an understanding that what happens on the show isn't real life. Anyone who comes to this wanting it to be about the show, will only be sporadically happy, but I found it pretty interesting. The co-writing, Chad Millman, did a nice job making it sound like Gary's voice, or my understanding of his voice over the years. While I wasn't blown away, I felt that the book accomplished what the author(s) set out to do. Gary comes across as a pretty sincere guy.
Parents who are degrees of crazy are familiar to a lot of people. Growing up, even in a good home, is necessarily about being at the whims and moods of your elders and their ideas about child-rearing and so I almost always sympathize with stories about growing up. It started with Mommy Dearest and still persists. I also see why he's had a job so long on a show in which mood swings make for good radio when other people would have slipped out the door.
The cover is pretty funny, but I almost wonder if it mislead people into thinking it was going to be a different type of book, along with perhaps some preconceptions. I found it to be an entertaining and interesting read. I also thought the note of "be careful what you wish for" concerning perfect parents at the end was well-handled and relatable to a lot of people.
That criticism aside, there is a lot to like in this book. Gary has an interesting story growing up with a mentally unstable mom, a stoic italian world war II vet father, an older rebellious brother, and another brother who contracted and died from AIDS before the world really knew what the disease was about. In addition to those parts of the book, Gary's recollections of starting out in college radio, working various jobs on Long Island, and eventually getting the NBC job that would lead to Howard are all very entertaining. His recollections of the disastarous Mets picth in 2009 as well as the love tape he sent to his ex are really worth the price of the book. Those two sections are pretty perfect. It's the more mundane stuff that seems to come off as sloppy writing that is too casual for its own good. Again, not a huge complaint, just a shame that a little more time was not spent on the editing.
A listener of Stern since '89, this really is a must for any fan...even with all those stupid, pointless lists!