Families Sure Are Funny

Awkward Family Photos by Mike Bender and Doug Chernack

Awkward Family Photos by Mike Bender and Doug Chernack

A few weeks ago a friend of mine told me about Awkward Family Photos. This is a collection of photos that I would probably have burned if I had some of these for my family.  However, these families bravely submitted them for the world to see.

Sometimes the reason for the awkward moment hits you in the face, but then there are others that you really have to look carefully at the picture and what is happening in the background to figure out what is funny about the photo. When I realized what is “special” about the photo I felt stupid for not noticing it right away.

What's Eating Gilbert Grape?

By Peter Hedges

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"Gilbert Grape is devoted to taking care of his family, which includes an obese mother and a mentally impaired brother. He feels the hopelessness of his life in a rural community when a young woman breezes into town and changes everything."
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The Worst Day of My Life, So Far

By M. A. Harper

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A middle-aged woman is forced to return to a home state she'd rather forget…and come to terms with a past filled with the shadows of her mother--a once vibrant femme fatale now suffering from Alzheimer's.

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Little Miss Strange

By Joanna Rose

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"Sarajean is the child of love children. She lives with Jimmy Henry, a Vietnam vet she accepts as her father. Her mother, whoever she was, disappeared long ago. Sarajean scams her way through childhood, surviving on intuition, seeing her world clearly without judging it. From carelessly discarded clues, she knits together the identity she's always longed for."
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From the Dust Returned: A Family Remembrance

By Ray Bradbury

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"...he takes us to a most wondrous destination: into the heart of an Eternal Family. They have lived for centuries in a house of legend and mystery in upper Illinois -- and they are not like other midwesterners. Rarely encountered in daylight hours, their children are curious and wild; their old ones have survived since before the Sphinx first sank its paws deep in Egyptian sands. And some sleep in beds with lids. Now the house is being readied in anticipation of the gala homecoming that will gather together the farflung branches of this odd and remarkable family.

"In the past-midnight stillness can be detected the soft fluttering of Uncle Einars wings. From her realm of sleep, Cecy, the fairest and most special daughter, can feel the approach of many a welcome being -- shapeshifter, telepath, somnambulist, vampire -- as she flies high in the consciousness of bird and bat. But in the midst of eager anticipation, a sense of doom pervades. For the world is changing. And death, no stranger, will always shadow this most singular family..."

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Geek Love

By Katherine Dunn

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"...the story of the Binewskis, a carny family whose mater- and paterfamilias set out–-with the help of amphetamine, arsenic, and radioisotopes–-to breed their own exhibit of human oddities. There’s Arturo the Aquaboy, who has flippers for limbs and a megalomaniac ambition worthy of Genghis Khan . . . Iphy and Elly, the lissome Siamese twins . . . albino hunchback Oly, and the outwardly normal Chick, whose mysterious gifts make him the family’s most precious–-and dangerous–-asset. As the Binewskis take their act across the backwaters of the U.S., inspiring fanatical devotion and murderous revulsion; as its members conduct their own Machiavellian version of sibling rivalry, Geek Love throws its sulfurous light on our notions of the freakish and the normal, the beautiful and the ugly, the holy and the obscene. Family values will never be the same."

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Evolution Man, Or, How I Ate My Father

By Roy Lewis

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"Containing an eyewitness account of the first human courtship ever, a study of the lives of an everyday, ordinary cave family includes portraits of Mom, the ape woman; brother William and his attempted animal domestication; and Dad, the inventor."
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Behind the Scenes at the Museum

By Kate Atkinson

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A family saga chronicles a century of life as four generations of Yorkshire women move through two World Wars, coronations, secrets, heartbreak, and happiness, all seen through the eyes of an inimitable narrator named Ruby Lennox.

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An Underachiever's Diary

By Benjamin Anastas

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William and Clive are mismatched twins. As Clive masters each coming-of-age ritual right on schedule, William...proves himself unequal to every task.

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All Families Are Psychotic

By Douglas Coupland

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"The most disastrous family reunion in the history of fiction. The Drummond family descends upon the state of Florida, cutting a swath through Disney World, Cape Canaveral, the swamps and the highways, gathering to watch the launch into space of their beloved daughter and sister, Sarah. What should be a cause for celebration becomes instead the impetus for a series of mishaps and coincidences that place them in constant peril. In a family where gunplay, black market negotiations and kidnapping are all part of an afternoon in the sun, you can only imagine what happens when things take a turn for the worse."
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