What are a few things that one might discover in your book?
Well, in the “Un-talk Like Your Parents'' section, it's really an interactive section that engages the reader right from the start. It's extremely helpful because we've all had that moment where something comes out of our mouth and then you really recognize one of your trademark parentages. One of the most important sections, really the shortest section, in the book is the quick tips about wearing wind pants. In summary, just don't do that.
The book is coming out right at the top of holiday season. What advice can you share on dealing with all that family time?
Family gatherings — the cooking, the gift giving and the general holiday spirit — can be a time when these parental behaviors really show themselves. You could be with family and/or your parents and just slide into these behaviors easier than you think. It's really about looking around and not doing the random unbuttoning of the pants and announcing how good the meal was and not giving facts about what what tryptophan in turkey does, for example. It can help you not slide into those holiday "Parentamorphosis" moments that you might normally do without having my book at your side.
Going over my gift list, how do I identify who on it needs your book?
Well, really, it's a book for everybody. If you were lost in the woods, you would want a map and this is a map for "Parentamorphosis," both for people identifying "Parentamorphosis" in their family and friends around them and those sufferers of "Parentamorphosis". So the more you know about "Parentamorphosis," the easier it is to recognize, as I said, not only the signs in others, but the signs in yourself. Really, it's a book that's a home run for everyone.
The book is dedicated to your own parents. Tell me more about them.
George and Rose. Where would I be without George and Rose? They just taught me to go after my passions. I grew up on an apple farm. My dad ran the apple farm and my mom, Rose, she ran a bakery right out of the house next to it. So fresh apple pies all year long. And what they taught me was what work ethic really is and to find my passion. And it took me a while, but when Parenta-Life and "Parentamorphosis" came knocking, I answered the call and I haven't been any happier at any point in my life.
Do you have firsthand experience suffering from the symptoms of "Parentamorphosis?"
I am a sufferer who found his way back. I remember the first time, looking down and seeing black socks and sandals. I'd seen signs of it before, commenting on where the coffee beans in my coffee came from. I was just saying it. I didn't know for sure, but it felt like the right fact to say, so I said it. But, again, I brought myself back and I saw the signs and that was the key. Once you see the signs, to then come back. That's what I'm really helping people do and that's what this book is so helpful for. It helps you see the signs before you get too far down the road. If I would have had this map, maybe I would have stopped at the sandals.
What does life free of "Parentamorphosis" look like?
It looks like not feeling so encumbered by the responsibility of home ownership. It's hiking, it's deep sea diving, it's learning a new language, it's traveling somewhere you haven't traveled before. It frees you up to not be so encumbered by feeling so responsible to have not only purchased a home, but to have bundled your home and auto insurance.
Do you have any final nuggets of wisdom for potentially at-risk Ad Age readers?
My advice would be not only to buy one copy of the book, but buy two. Because not only then do you have one for you in your hand, you also have one to give to someone to say hey, you're not alone. A lot of times we just need to feel not alone. And then, a side effect of that is I also sell two books.