All Stories Are Fiction: Tension is the Great Integrity
by Mike Daisey
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Mike Daisey is a fierce storyteller, one minute hilarious, the next minute sweet, with a fine-tuned ear for digression. He circles in on his uneasy subject matter, closer and closer, until he exposes the raw heart. The New York Times calls him "the master storyteller" and he has been compared to Garrison Keillor, Spalding Gray, and David Sedaris. In these seven monologues, recorded before live audiences at New York's Performance Space 122, Daisey tells true stories from his life that range from the terrible beauty of his rural Maine hometown, to shipping weapons to the Middle East, to the unintentionally hilarious dangers of defending free speech. In Tension is the Great Integrity, the passing of the Pope and conflicting feelings about Catholicism are touched on, as is Mike's trouble with writing deadlines for an independent film to be made in Copenhagen. Papal musings come head-to-head with evocative and mournful Scandinavian imagery like "a cup full of black ravens sits before me and I live in a profound desolation of the self". Yes, it's funnier than it sounds.