Amy Sedaris: Etsy Or Smithsonian? We travel to the Philadelphia area with Amy Sedaris! She talks about finally starting her dream project, a TV show about hosting, and we put her crafting expertise in a game of "Etsy or Smithsonian?"
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Amy Sedaris: Etsy Or Smithsonian?

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Amy Sedaris: Etsy Or Smithsonian?

Amy Sedaris: Etsy Or Smithsonian?

Amy Sedaris: Etsy Or Smithsonian?

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/523934734/523940180" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Amy Sedaris on Ask Me Another. Mike Katzif/NPR hide caption

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Mike Katzif/NPR

Amy Sedaris on Ask Me Another.

Mike Katzif/NPR

Comedian Amy Sedaris isn't sure if her cult Comedy Central show Strangers With Candy, which she co-created with Stephen Colbert, Paul Dinello, and Mitch Rouse, could be made today. "You just can't make fun of anything anymore," she told host Ophira Eisenberg at the Keswick Theatre outside Philadelphia. "That's what we did in Strangers— we hit everybody, we made fun of everybody, maybe that's one reason we got away with it back then."

That strategy proved a hit, though Sedaris and crew didn't realize their show's success until they were on a tour for their book Wigfield. "We saw all these ugly people in the audience and we were like 'Oh My God! We have friends from Strangers With Candy'...and I brag that we had an ugly audience because that's the best audience to have."

Since the show ended in 2000, Sedaris has appeared on numerous sitcoms, authored two more books (2006's New York Times Bestseller, I Like You: Hospitality Under the Influence, and 2010's Simple Times: Crafts for Poor People) and voiced a number of characters, most recently the sassy Princess Caroline, on Netflix's hit show BoJack Horseman.

She's also the owner of her own home business: after ending the run of her popular home cooked cupcakes and cheese balls, Sedaris has since taken up selling decorated lighters, potholders, and catnip toys. She'll be taking her love for cooking and crafting further with her new series, a home making show on truTV, based on her books. "Whenever I watch those shows...Martha Stewart ...or like Bob Ross.....I felt hypnotized...and I want to capture that feeling. But once you start writing a show like that you get bored real quick... I want to teach you how to make a real cream sauce...(but) it's like snooze-a-rooze...They're enough people who can really teach you that. Now I'm thinking maybe I should go for the laughs."

We put Sedaris's crafting knowledge to the test with a game where she must decide whether described objects are art pieces from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, or something that can be bought from the peer-to-peer e-commerce site, Etsy.

Amy Sedaris: Etsy Or Smithsonian?

Correction April 17, 2017

In a previous version of this story, we incorrectly called the Smithsonian American Art Museum the Smithsonian Museum of American Art.