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I Feel Bad About My Neck: and Other Thoughts on Being a Woman

3.64  ·  Rating Details ·  29,710 Ratings  ·  3,981 Reviews
With her disarming, intimate, completely accessible voice, and dry sense of humor, Nora Ephron shares with us her ups and downs in I Feel Bad About My Neck, a candid, hilarious look at women who are getting older and dealing with the tribulations of maintenance, menopause, empty nests, and life itself.
The woman who brought us When Harry Met Sally . . . discusses everything
...more
Audio CD, 4 pages
Published September 12th 2006 by RH Audio (first published 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Beli_grrl
Aug 29, 2007 Beli_grrl rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: wealthy older women
I listened to the audio book on CD, which is read by the author. That was not the way to go with this one. She has odd inflections and an unnatural reading cadence. For example, she might read like this:

We lived (pause)
in a white house (pause)
and I didn't (pause)
like it.

Partly because of her reading style and partly because of the content, I had trouble getting into it. It's supposed to be funny but isn't especially. She describes all the "maintenance" older women do to keep up their appearances
...more
Darce
Jan 19, 2009 Darce rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Despite the clever and sometimes funny observations about aging, I couldn't shake the feeling that this book of essays was...trivial. Except for the final chapter (Considering the Alternative), Ephron spends a lot of time writing about superficial aspects of growing older (the skin on her neck, her disorganized purse, her worsening eyesight) that make her seem shallow and self-absorbed. In the essay focused on all the hours she devotes to maintaining her appearance (On Maintenance), she describe ...more
Reese
Jun 06, 2011 Reese rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sitting in a movie theater back in the eighties, not my eighties -- the 1980s, I am smiling, laughing, just having a good ol' time when suddenly TERMS OF ENDEARMENT goes from funny to ominous to dark as turds that can signal upper g.i. bleeding. I'm thinking, "Shit, no, don't take this story there." I'm not walking out of a movie with Shirley MacLaine and Jack Nicholson in it; that fact means watching a character who's about my age die of cancer. She's got three young kids; I have one and one ba ...more
Kristijan
"Osećam se loše zbog svog vrata" sam kupio (svojevremeno na nekoj Deretinoj akciji na kojoj je dotična knjiga bila na neverovatnom popustu) prvenstveno kao posledicu ponovljenog gledanja skoro pa kultnog filma "When Harry Met Sally".
Iako je tekst na koricama obećavao kako će Norin humor da razoruža čitaoca i da će postojati momenti kada će se čitaoci smejati na sav glas - ti momenti su kod mene izostali. Bilo je momenata kada su se usne blago izvile u neki poluosmeh (ili je to možda bio grč jer
...more
Sue Cook
The thing is this. Nora and I are not sisters.
In "On Maintenance": "When and how did it happen that you absolutely had to have a manicure?" er, never? I also don't care that much about make up or matching handbags or wrinkles. I JUST REALLY DON'T CARE.
What I care about is women being raped, beaten up, paid less,not let in, talked down to and generally fucked over because they are women.
"I Feel Bad About My Neck" adopts a universal voice but talks only about a sliver of privileged society. It i
...more
Barbara

Multi-talented Nora Ephron was a journalist, director, and author. In her heyday Ephron wrote the screenplays for some very popular movies including 'Julie and Julia', 'You've Got Mail', 'Sleepless in Seattle', 'When Harry Met Sally', and 'Silkwood.' This audiobook - read by the author - contains a collection of humorous essays written when Ephron was 60 years old...and stopped having birthdays. In fact Ephron notes that, upon publication of this book, she'll have been 60 for five years (ha ha
...more
Lain
Nov 30, 2007 Lain rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nora Ephron is, hands-down, one of the funniest women in America. Her novels, movies, and essay collections have brought me to tears by way of laughter more than once. That's why I was a bit disappointed by this collection of essays, loosely tied around the topic of aging.

The essays on aging were amusing, but not particularly funny or fresh. It was like eating a day-old doughnut -- still tasty, but probably not worth all the calories. The weird thing -- her non-age-related essays were brilliant
...more
Sandy T
So I bought this book thinking it was going to be full of humor about what happens to women when they reach that "certain age". I was expecting to relate to and be amused by her musings about getting older. And that did happen... certain chapters really made me smile, and I could relate to more than I would like to admit! But for about half the chapters, the only people who would relate to it would be rich, famous, New York socialites. That obviously doesn't describe me, so even though her writi ...more
Malbadeen
Sep 12, 2010 Malbadeen rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Malbadeen by: shallow people such as myself
Here's the thing, I would've never listened to this book if it weren't for the fact that years ago I gifted it to someone in those last few moments of Christmas-oh-shit-I-forgot-to-buy-that-person-a-gift hysteria.

I was married at the time and was, by default, put in charge of figuring out what EVERYONE should be given. My mother-in-law and I had a so-so relationship. I mean she did accuse me of purposely putting pins in her bed when she stayed the night and got poked a few times with left over
...more
Michelle
http://fromichelle.blogspot.com/2008/...

I've finished another book...

I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron

I like Nora. She's real. And she's smart. Nice combination. Add in the fact that she shares her wisdom freely, and also in a funny way, and it makes her even better.

I could have written her exact words on reading...

"Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to tal
...more
Sue
Aug 27, 2011 Sue rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humor
For most of you who are my Goodreads friends, you will be too young to really appreciate the humor in this book -- after all, you still have firm, unwrinkled necks which you have probably never even given a single thought. BUT take my word for it, someday you will. And then, you should run right out and find a copy of this book. (Perhaps you can find one cheap in the garage sales that members of my generation will be having as we downsize into assisted living apartments!) Anyway, when it comes t ...more
Phillip Smith
Oct 19, 2007 Phillip Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Amanda W.
It won't change your life, but it is quite a treat for a sunny afternoon. I read most of it lying in the sunshine on my bed shortly after lunch on a Saturday.

Ephron, like Sedaris & Degeneres, has a gift for expressing mundane thoughts in the most delightful phrases. The one that's in my head right now is when she describes loving cabbage strudel in the 1960s: "I don't want to get too sentimental, but it's practically the only thing I remember about my first marriage." You'll be chuckling the
...more
Negin
Oct 04, 2015 Negin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love Nora Ephron and wish that she was still alive so that I could continue to enjoy her witty and funny style of writing. Funny is something that I seem to crave these days. This is only her second book that I’ve read. It’s a quick read and a particularly enjoyable one.

Every parent should read her chapter “Parent in Three Stages”. I desperately needed that!
Paul
Ephron is better known as a screen writer, in particular for When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle, films with some very funny moments and strong observations about the human psyche and relationships. In this little book, she turns the spotlight back on herself. It is a collection of articles and essays with titles such as I Hate My Handbag and What I Wish I'd Known as well as other things that affect a aging Manhattenite.

It is written as a fairly honest account of her life, but whilst i
...more
Seth Fiegerman
Dec 02, 2013 Seth Fiegerman rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm not a woman. Nor am I a parent or a successful screenwriter or a particularly ambitious cook. But I still found myself nodding my head over and over as I related to Ephron's insights on life. She writes plainly but with great humor and candidness about her abusive relationship with her apartment building, why parenting is more about quantity time than quality time and how something always seems to go wrong when she tries to exercise. It's the portions about New York that really got me, thoug ...more
CC
Sep 03, 2011 CC rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have to say I'm a little baffled by Nora Ephron. She was in intern in the JFK White House and had a free pass to roam its halls. She was a reporter at Newsweek in the 1960's, before they even had female reporters. She's been married three times. One of her husbands was Pulitzer Prize winner Carl Bernstein of the Watergate scandal. And when he had an affair it wasn't just with any old woman, but with the wife of the British ambassador to the United States. She's been nominated for three academy ...more
Erica
CRAP!
I am of an age that I now empathize with these stories instead of just finding them amusing.
Damnation.

Ok. I don't relate to all the stories. For instance, I don't live in an apt. in NYC, though I do completely understand having a ridiculous amount of love for one's home and community.
I don't do the maintenance thing. Well, except now I've started paying more attention to my neck because maybe these last few years or months of preventative measures will make a difference.

"Consider the Altern
...more
Lisa
Mar 24, 2010 Lisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
At first I thought: This is just not something that I can ever in any way understand or comiserate with. Nora Ephron is filthy rich, twice (thrice?) divorced, extreamly successful in her career, living in Manhattan, and 64 years old. She begins with a long discourse on the pain-in-the-neck-ness of having to dye her hair to illiminate gray (I am at least 10% gray and not in the least bit upset or willing to do a thing about it), the ins and outs of purchasing expensive handbags (never, ever cross ...more
Sonya
Sep 14, 2016 Sonya rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

قسمتی از کتاب:
یکی از بزرگترین غصه های من این بوده که چرا وقتی جوانتر بودم، وقت بیشتری صرف نکردم تا حسابی به گردنم نگاه کنم. هیچ وقت فکر نمی کردم باید
شکر گذار آن نعمت باشم. اصلا به ذهنم خطور نمی کرد روزی برسد دلم برای عضوی از بدنم تنگ بشود که زمانی کمترین توجهی به آن نمی کردم.

Rebecca Foster
Jan 30, 2014 Rebecca Foster rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Just the right book for a woman of a certain age (or any age). Ephron is funny and good-natured, never feeling sorry for herself as she points out the absurdities in how women try to turn back the clock, performing ‘maintenance’ as if they were half-broken jalopies, only just holding together. (This alongside Diana Athill’s Somewhere Towards the End would provide a good balanced tone.)

This collection is also, somewhat surprisingly, very wise on the subject of reading. From “Blind as a Bat”:

Read
...more
Barbara Rice
I have a love-hate relationship with Nora Ephron. On the one hand, she's a Democrat, so I feel a certain allegience with her. I want to like her. Sometimes I actually get what she's saying.

Other times I think, can you hear yourself? Is that really what you think? Are you that vapid? She makes a point, a brilliant point, then suddenly punctures it with a denigrating remark - perhaps to keep us from taking her too seriously, perhaps to make us laugh - but it detsroys the momentum and lets us down.
...more
Daniel Chaikin
Sep 26, 2015 Daniel Chaikin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-favorites
I have spent a ridiculously large amount of time wondering whether I should be embarrassed about listening to a book titled "Thoughts on Being a Woman" and then, in turn, wondering what is wrong with me that I even think about this, what all this says about what I previously thought was a personal blindness-to-the-sexes kind of outlook on people.

Anyway, outside that little personal issue, the book was terrific, probably ten times better in audio while sitting in traffic, then in text form. Traff
...more
Brittany
Jul 29, 2008 Brittany rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I took a break last night from reading about conservation, zoos, and How to Save the Wild to read this delightful collection of essays by Nora Ephron (whom you may recognize as the woman who co-wrote When Harry Met Sally). She writes about the agony of aging, especially the terrible things that happen to your neck, but also shares the fruits of aging, in her pearls of wisdom and wonderful, witty stories from her life. She writes about falling into (and then slowly out of) love with her apartmen ...more
Molly
Aug 28, 2015 Molly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, brilliant
Watching the "in memoriam" montage at the Oscars on Sunday night reminded me that I hadn't yet gotten around to writing about Nora Ephron, one of our country's great writers, who died last year.

Ephron was best known as a screenwriter and has been nominated for three Oscars and won a Writers Guild Award. Many of her movies were also incredibly huge hits. She wrote films as intelligent as Silkwood and Julie and Julia and as accessible as Sleepless in Seattle and You've Got Mail. And, of course, sh
...more
Bookmarks Magazine

Nora Ephron, best known for her screenplays When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, and Silkwood and best sellers Heartburn and Crazy Salad, has written a sort of Ephron retrospective. Though humorously self-deprecating and poignant, critics agree that the essays, some published previously,are uneven. Readers may love "I Hate My Purse"__unless they find it outdated. Other essays came off as vain, stale, or elitist in their carefree attitude toward luxury items. Only "Considering the Alternat

...more
Tiffini
Jul 29, 2012 Tiffini rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Nora rambles on about the crap in her purse, dying her hair, plastic surgery and her neck insecurities. The specifics of her shallow, self-obsessed life were endless and dull. Oh the poor rich Manhattanite who spends too much on face cream. Yawn.

This book is not a candid hilarious honest truth of aging it is depressing, vapid, shallow, materialistic and so chock full of cynicism it was suffocating. If it is such a burden to keep your hair dyed then stop dying it and let it go grey. Her petty whi
...more
Kelli
Apr 07, 2015 Kelli rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015-not-fiction
It's been a rough couple years...I mean days. I grabbed this book off the shelf in the library and sat behind my son as he played some cartoony anatomy game wherein he places organs in the correct spot on a very happy looking skeleton (even though I have noted several key organs are simply not there...but I digress.). Anyway, I really had to leave the library because I was cracking up. This collection of essays includes some that are very funny and some that are less so but I had several laugh o ...more
Kaethe
I don't feel bad about my neck. I might someday be a woman in turtlenecks and scarves, but I kind of doubt it. I've never been divorced, let alone remarried, never lived in New York, I hate cooking, and am fairly indifferent about what I eat. So, pretty much nothing in common with Nora Ephron. She was funny and encouraging and not only will she me missed by her family and loved ones, she will also be missed by untold numbers of fans of her sundry work.


Library copy
Gretchen Alice
Jan 14, 2016 Gretchen Alice rated it really liked it
“Everything is copy.”
After Nora’s death in 2012, I kept a post-it note by my desk with the famous advice given to Nora by her mother. Even the terrible things have something to offer us. Everything is fodder for a good story. There’s even a hint of “this, too, shall pass” contained in those three little words.

I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman is a collection of the copy that Ephron gathered through the years. Realistically, though, the title should be I Feel Bad About
...more
Roxane
Jun 30, 2012 Roxane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was such a charming book. Aging is clearly very fraught and the sharp wit of the essays in this book is quite wonderful.
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Nora Ephron was an American film director, producer, screenwriter, novelist, and blogger.

She was best known for her romantic comedies and is a triple nominee for the Academy Award for Writing Original Screenplay; for Silkwood, When Harry Met Sally... and Sleepless in Seattle. She sometimes wrote with her sister, Delia Ephron.
More about Nora Ephron...

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“Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it's a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it's a way of making contact with someone else's imagination after a day that's all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss.” 879 likes
“When your children are teenagers, it's important to have a dog so that someone in the house is happy to see you.” 192 likes
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