Monday, February 16, 2009

Under the Influence

Since I'm reviewing the blog of a school-girl today, let's start with a quiz. What do the following have in common?

Edgar Allen Poe
Stephen Crane
Theodore Roethke
Herman Melville
Delmore Schwartz
F. Scott Fitzgerald
William Faulkner
Ernest Hemingway
Jack London
Dorothy Parker
Eugene O'Neill
John Steinbeck

Any thoughts?

The answer, in this case, although there may be others: they were all heavy drinkers. And, when I say heavy drinkers, I mean alcoholics. They lived their lives looking through the blur of a whisky/gin/vodka/wine bottle. Of the seven Americans who have won the Nobel prize for literature, five were heavy drinkers/alcoholics.

I hate to segway off into meaningless trivia, so let me get straight to the point: The only thing that would enliven this blog is a sixpack of beer or several shots of hard liquor, on the part of the reader OR the writer.

This blog is the relentless inertia of an emo crowd standing in front of their favorite band. It's the slow and killing crawl of an ant across the floor on a hundred degree day with air so heavy it can suffocate you.

After spending a half hour reading it today, I either need a swift blow to the head or a stiff drink to make it through this review. It fucking sucked the life out of me, a pageful of vampiric words lying in wait to strip the vitality from the hapless reader who stumbles into its lair.

Jesus God, you're 19 years old, and this is the best you've got to write about?
Did you know that the female guppy can give birth and then be ready again for conception in a few hours?

And get this, guppies have the ability to store sperm, so the females can give birth many times, after only once breeding with a male!

I had high hopes after reading the subtitle: "wishful thinking and imaginative solutions to the demons of college life."

Alas...there is no wishful thinking. No imaginative solutions. And, demons are in short supply, as well.

Instead, there is this:
When it begins, I know my case is stronger, my argument is a blend of emotional and rational aspects and I have a loud voice, but half-way through being angry and pissed, I get bored.

And, the person you are arguing with keels over dead, a victim of your monotony.

But wait, there's more:
I feel empty. Almost like the words random words floating about in my head without meaning. Never a sentence, never an idea, just useless random words.

It has to suck to write this, but it's excruciating to read.

What's my advice? Jesus God, get a fucking life.

You're 19. It's your time to drink, carouse, and have meaningless shags. You NEED, desperately, to kiss a stranger wetly and passionately in the smoky gloom of a skeezy bar, out on the dance floor with the beat pulsing in your ears, a hard groin pressed up against your own, and the smell of old beer in your nostrils. You NEED to find a strange tongue in your mouth occasionally. You NEED to choke down some Gentleman Jack splashed with Coke and twisted with lime. You NEED to put on a short skirt, and wax your hoo-hah. You NEED to dance your goddamn ass off.

YOU NEED TO FUCKING LIVE.

Get a fucking life, and THEN write about it.

At present, your writing is like that of an 80 year old woman imprisoned in a nursing home, whose life is boundaried by the daily schedule of Bollywood Squares.

The template is fine, but colorless.
The prose is technically correct, but bland as white walls in a white house on a suburban cul de sac.

Lose this fucking colorless black white and gray world you live in, and find some...

Red. Red. *Red*. *Red*, Charlie boy. *Red*!

Red
is the color of sex and fear and danger and signs that say "Do. Not. Enter."

All of my favorite things in life are red.
.


I give you a And, I send along the wish that you will pump all the living into this period of your life that it can hold, until it is bulging to the seams with wild exploits, crazy adventures, hangovers, meeting of strange men, and joi de vivre.

Trust me on this one...your young years are over in the twinkle of a dead writer's eye, and then you are 43, with two kids, and reliving your glory days only in your memories and on facebook.

Don't miss them. You'll regret it.

67 comments:

  1. I think that this may be part of the problem:

    If were stuck in a small room with a TV, for all my life, I’d be happy. I love you my little idiot box!

    I get it. I have an unhealthy relationship with my TV, too. But I'm 33.

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  2. And that's not to say that my living is over and that parking my ass on the couch is okay because of my advanced years or anything. But I've lived a little. I've earned the right to be lazy.

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  3. Fucking garbage. When I was your age, I watched television. That's a great fucking story. One that this chick shouldn't be allowed to tell.

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  4. Ohhhhh I love this LB! You are so right! I cannot imagine being 42 and looking back at myself at 19 and seeing anything other than being near death or a very long prison sentence on a daily basis. That may seem extreme, but I honestly cannot imagine looking back and seeing anyone else.

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  5. So what I'm getting is that if I start drinking more, well, a lot more in my case, I might write something worth reading?

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  6. "...little boxes, full of ticky-tacky..."

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  7. I agree, go out and live. Thank god the only thing the internets held when I was in college were academic articles and sleazy chat rooms you avoided because they were rank with pedophiles and douchebags.

    I had to go LIVE to battle the ennui- and you know, get into trouble.

    Good review, LB!

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  8. LB, were you stalking me from 2001 to 2005? How I wish I'd had a blog during my glory years, that was some shit worth reading.
    We caught my 23 YO Single, cute, SIL eating V-day dinner with my in-laws. It made me want to scream "STOP SUCKING THE TIT!!!!" I think there are better things to do on V-day in AUSTIN - like go find a piece.

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  9. GOK - I'm confused by your comment. Maybe it's the senility. I wasn't sure if you were referring to me or not when you said, "Fucking garbag". Just to be clear, I was too busy living life at 19 to be in love with my TV all that much. There's nothing wrong with watching TV at any age. I was just saying that maybe she spends too much time on the couch and not enough time out there experiencing an actual life. I think that this is an excellent review and really dead on in evaluation.

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  10. Good news: I wasn't talking about you, Gwen.
    Bad news: you're fucking senile, Gwen.

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  11. I was going to suggest some powerful meds for the blogger, but then I realized that you had begun your post by suggesting large quantities of strong drink, so there you go.

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  12. The first post I read was like an ode to her TV. At 19 I would have written an ode to cock, or booze, or weed. Or my Doc Martens. But TV? TV was for porn viewing or Screaming Jeopardy or resting your beer on.

    You couldn't be more right with this one, LB. The girl needs to get out there and live a little to have something interesting to write about. I wanted to like her because her design is fine and she's not a terrible writer, but basically *yawn.*

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  13. Actually I think it's all the drugs I do, GOK.

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  14. Yeah my dad is on all sorts of old people drugs and he's always saying crazy shit.

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  15. This poor girl though, struggling with mediocrity.

    Her life is completely controlled by the fear of being judged for being herself, and here we are, judging her for being herself.

    Girly, whatever your name is, LB is right: You need to go out and make some Bad Decisions.

    Here's why: getting in good fun trouble, and taking risks, is soooo worth the hangovers and shame. Because those you can get over. Hangovers and shame. But even more important is remembering laughing, smiling, confidence.

    Even if you're not ready, or willing, to game those hot strange men, pretend you're the type of girl that would, and leave it at that. Pretending you have the confidence is just as good as having it, because at 19, I guarantee you, the majority of girls don't fucking have it.

    And don't fire back that you have confidence, because if you did, you wouldn't write with such loneliness and boredom, you wouldn't be reaching out across the internet for someone who understands, and you wouldn't be defending your television so much.

    Seriously? Television? I'd rather have a six-pack and a dog.

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  16. Rass: like a pomeranian that loves peanut butter? You little minx.

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  17. So, obviously, I WAS this girl at nineteen.

    Fuck it, I was her until 21. Maybe I watched different television shows, because hey, Nerd Factor here, but yeah.

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  18. Rass: look, that's your call. I underestimated you.

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  19. Damn, I'm slow. Fuck you, Gok.

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  20. I don't know, Rass. I'm not judging her for being herself. I'm more judging her for not being herself. She's only 19 and I get the impression from her most recent post that she's already given up on herself, on her most simple dreams. That is just so sad to me. Maybe there's depression at play here. Maybe disillusionment. I think she's a good writer. But there's no life behind her words. And it makes me ache for her in my heart. It makes we want to infuse her with some sort of dynamic or come up with some solution in my old people's drug-addled brain. I actually know I don't have the answers. But to see this sort of futility in a 19 year old is disheartening.

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  21. No Gwen, this is disheartening: one day you will die and just before you do, you will realize one absolute, that ultimately nobody is willing to die with you. Loneliness.

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  22. Also, you will regret not trying one of my biscotti. Aaaaaayyyyy, biscotti!

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  23. I'll try anything once, GOK. Even one of your damn, infamous biscottis.

    And you know what? I know a few people that would throw themselves on my funeral pyre. You'd be surprised : )

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  24. I actually understand this poster quite well. I grew up as the shy, awkward, quiet girl who had great difficulty expressing herself and being assertive. And when I went to college, I FORCED myself to pretend to a level of confidence I really did not have. And, along the way, I realized that no one else had it. Even the most beautiful girls were terrified at times under the surface.

    But, if you force yourself to act confident long enough, at one point, you will realize that you ARE confident, and it will have happened before you even realized it.

    You just have to force yourself to GET OUT THERE and do it.

    For the record, I've done this more than once...during college. And then, again, when I was 39 and newly divorced, having to rebuild my life from scratch.

    It ain't easy, but it beats the shit out of watching re-runs of the Gilmore Girls.

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  25. More than likely, if you're burning, you probably won't get the satisfaction of finding out wether or not they passed or were rescued. Scones, I'm making scones this week.

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  26. Exactly. You can't wait around for someone to inspire you to live. You just have to do it yourself.

    Scones? Can't we have crullers?

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  27. fuck those fucking biscotti. I want a REAL cookie.

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  28. LB: you reak of circle jerk right now.

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  29. Key:

    You reak of ass at all times.

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  30. One of the more negative things that could have happened to east Indian kids is the impact of the influence of american trends.

    That blog is proof.

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  31. LB: um, yes I do. That will never change. If you want a cookie, you come last.

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  32. I'll make my own damn cookies, thanks.

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  33. Women, always making things more difficult than they have to be. Have it your way.

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  34. Also, you can't hug your children with nuclear arms.

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  35. See, Gwen, you're not as old as I thought you were.

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  36. Can you people carry on a dialog that doesn't involve sex or food, hm?

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  37. Gap, you've been stalking me long enough to know that I for one, cannot.

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  38. I'm like a sexy, skinny, George Costanza.

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  39. Well, then you can be my latex salesman.

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  40. If ANYone I know tries to throw themselves on my funeral pyre I will personally shoot them directly between the eyes just before I kick it. Seriously.

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  41. Oh hi, Ky, you hunk of handsome! You remind me that I should mosey on over to your blog this month.

    PS, Maui's autographed photos are still on my wall.

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  42. I'm sure they are, Gap. Hey, it's Feburary, looked at your calendar lately?

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  43. Ghost, you're a whore.

    Gap, I need to talk to you. Email me, I lost your email, AGAIN!

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  44. The calander is open to your photo and tacked to my living room wall, surrouned by Maui's shine, which is tacked to my wall in a giant heart formation. I threw in a few catholic candles and a crucifix to give it that glow I love.

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  45. DPH: Um, well, yeah. Guilty as charged.

    Gap: I knew I could count on you.

    Doug: Funnyman, tell us a joke. Sadly, I would be a horrible latex salesman. I'd be a better architect.

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  46. I identified a lot with this blogger. If I went back through old journals, I would find the same type of thing except with really lousy writing. Oh, and I could never have blogged about television because my parents didn't let me watch it growing up cause we were hard core evangelicals, so when I went to college and saw television sets everywhere, like Cal, I assumed that was where you were supposed to set your beer or your bong. But good thing my parents raised me not to watch television.

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  47. Along with "twisted lisa" "above the influence" apparently needs a good fuck.

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  48. Can you people carry on a dialog that doesn't involve sex or food, hm?

    Good point. It's been a while since we talked about hardcore Jesus, y'all.

    Hardcore Jesus would hammer this blog to a cross with his forehead.

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  49. Also, discontent, should you again feel it necessary to rub our faces in the fact that YOU, apparently, are getting regular good fucks, and some of us aren't, it's a spork to the spleen for you.

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  50. When reading the post I'm such a loser, her opening line, "I don’t have the patience to end what I start," immediately made me think, "Fuck, this means she isn't going to stop blogging."

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  51. After reading more of her posts, I do understand this woman better. I wrote in a similar fashion, although my writing wasn't even as good, when I was 19. But all of my writing was in a journal that I kept hidden and to this day I would be embarrassed for anyone to see it. Granted, "blogging" wasn't even invented then. Maybe I would have had a boring blog up if given the opportunity. Now that I think about it, maybe in 10 yrs. I'll regret ever posting my blog.

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  52. I think this blog is why pink princess diaries that you keep under your bed with a lock & key were invented.

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  53. LB - I had one of those diaries with a lock and key. It gave me a false sense of security. My brother read that shit all the time and mocked me mercilessly about the contents. That's why I don't let him know about my blog :)

    It doesn't bother me so much that she writes this blog and is looking for some sort of understanding. She doesn't appear to have any delusions about her writing ability. She's been silent about the review. Maybe she really was just seeking some constructive feedback, which is what she got.

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  54. Oh, LB, discontent is doing all sorts of shit you don't want to hear about. Fucking a 19 year old is one of them.

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  55. You couldn't pay me enough to fuck a 19-year-old. Too much horny, not enough skills.

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  56. I can't believe that you mention school-girl in the first sentence and after 59 comments no one has mentioned plaid skirts.

    Disappointed.

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  57. Doug, tsk, tsk, tsk. I'm disappointed that you feel it necessary to bring up plaid skirts. Next you're going to start spewing on about how you enjoy the humor found in magazines like 'Maxim'.

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  58. Sure, to some it's a magazine. But to others, it's the Bible.

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  59. Um, will we see a new review today?

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  60. Your guess is as good as mine.

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  61. Well, my guess is that this is going to be a rather dull day.

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  62. Totally agree with your review and with your assessment of 19yo lovers, LB. But, as a teacher, I tend to see it as my ... um ... job to help the poor things develop their skills. Where would the unschooled dears be without a little caring tutelage?

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  63. Sorry for the delay on the review. Car trouble.

    I could use a biscotti.

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Grow a pair.