The Bucolic Plague
How Two Manhattanites Became Gentlemen Farmers
by Josh Kilmer-Purcell
I read this one 100% because of Sandy’s review at You’ve Gotta Read This! She was definitely right on with her great review. It’s the hilarious and yet touching true story of a former drag queen and his partner who decide to buy a mansion and become farmers. The pair are New Yorkers at heart and the transition to small town life is a tough one.
They tackle everything from raising goats to exploring the crypt on their property. All the while they are making new friends and trying to keep up with their old lives. The author works at an advertising agency and his partner works for Martha Stewart. Their attempt at running a farm isn’t an easy adventure, but it’s a unique one!
It’s not all funny stories on the farm though. The book chronicles not only their country escapades, but also their personal struggles and their full-time jobs in the city. It’s a bittersweet look at attaining your dreams and trying to live up to someone else’s. It’s about trying to find the balance between happiness and perfection and trying to determine what you really want out of life. It’s less about the actual act of farming and gardening and more about living the life you want.
BOTTOM LINE: I was expecting this to be a quick fun read, but I actually really liked it. The guys struggle with the things we all struggle with; balancing your personal life and work, balancing your expectations for yourself and others, etc.
Pair with a viewing of the 1988 movie Funny Farm. I can’t tell you how many scenes from this book took me straight back to this hilarious movie. I think it would be the perfect accompaniment to the book.