Becoming Bukowski

If you’re a book nerd and wanna be cool at the same time-as paradoxical as that is-you start off with Kerouac and think he’s the shit…driving cross-country with his shit head friend and hooking with easy girls. But Kerouac fronted to much for and plus, he died in a pool of his own vomit in mothers basements from alcoholism.

Bukowski is really the beginning of modern cool in the infamously uncool book world (since then, his successors include Bret Easton Ellis, Gavin McInnes, Jim Goad, Cat Marnell, and Jude Angelini.) I first read Ham On Rye, and it was the reading version of banging heroin in my veins. Instantly hooked, I friended for anything he wrote. I illegally downloaded purchased all his books at the local indie book store. Shit, I even tracked down the rare comic book collaboration he did with Robert Crumb.

Fancy language doesn’t impress me, but expressing a profound truth from the gut does. C.B. Conveyed the truth more explicitly than Hemingway’s stripped down style, with his lame innuendoes.

I copied his writing style.

Then, I affected his whole style, essentially becoming a dirty old man. My face had scars from adolescent acne, just like his. I was temperamentally melancholy and mercurial, vacillating depending on the situation.

I smoked cigarettes and drank from a flask and leered at the underclassmen girls (hell, they all looked fresh as peach to me) as they sashayed through campus, walk past; their long, lithe, and tanned legs enchanted my dirty mind.

The transformation progressed: I had a glass of whiskey with break, lunch, and dinner; between meals, I sipped on cheap beer and wrote poetry in the style of Charles B.

Slowly and gluttonously, I became his millennial reincarnation: just as grumpy, melancholy, and profligate. Girls never thought I cared for them, because of my nonchalance in the face of their tantrums over mild transgressions. I don’t know why they fucked me in the first place. I was funny in my self-loathing.

I once even called a hooker, and then cancelled. the degradation of exchanging money for sex precluded me from getting hard or even horny (yeah, yeah, cash for sex is too much but I WILL fuck a girl behind a dumpster or alleyway or fire escape–all of which I did).

Capitalism sucks for the best things in life. Call me a narcissist, but I enjoy it much better when the girl wants to fuck me, rather than smashing some special snowflake star-fishing on the bed, lying down like a princess.

When I got lonely and was nearly dead broke, I’d go to Northville Downs and bet on the ponies. $18 was the most cheese I ever won. I love gambling in life, but I despise it in seedy pool halls and casinos.

This continued for a solid year and I lost a lot of money, but I always found the racetrack peaceful, just a bunch of old men yelling at the TVs broadcasting races from all over the country. I had no problem picking the first-place horse, but the exacta and trifecta bets?!? fuhgeddaboutit!!!

I often wrote in a leather-bound book between races. Writing here left me inconspicuous and I avoided the pretentious literary douche pose; everyone wrote their bets down and all possible permutations for the races .


I refused to mutate into a indie-coffee shop faggot that tried to let everyone know they were writing their novel when in reality these beta male neckbeards were probably writing fanfic for Wonder Woman.

But this wasn’t enough for this aspiring Bukowski. I slept with (or at least tried to) as many women as possible, as long they were cute enough to turn my dick into coconut smasher ( and for the rest of ’em, Viagra and furtively moving around were my wingmen). I smoked cigarettes and drank hard liquor when I’d invite them over. They could smell They’d drink and smoke, too, even though they always demurred at first.

A fifth of liquor really fucks with your dick, so then I’d start popping dick pills to counteract, and I’d be able to make come up to 10 times before I even needed a water break.

That’s right: my modern Bukowski rendition voraciously ate dick pills, sport fucked, wrote compulsively, drank a fifth a day, and ingested all drugs I could get my hands on.

Every time a girl left in the morning though I’d always get struck by a melancholy spell, and I’d lie in bed with the curtains drawn. Maybe I was softie, a hopeless romantic sucker.


Regardless, this lifestyle wore me down and I had nothing to show for it….yet.

I always had these suicide-watch moments, and my ma always worried about me when they did. I’d tell her I was fine and then never text back.

My apathy seeped into my personal relationships, and they didn’t bother me at first; however the loneliness becomes a burden and an abyss at the same time.

But I’m stupid. I continued on this way for a moment until I couldn’t no longer. I know I’m fucked up: I’m damaged goods; but at least I keep all my fucked up shit compartmentalized in my brain. Most people can’t or they’ll go nuts.

I even was gifted with an alcohol tether thanks to probo during this years-long bender, and I soon found out that that shit is chick crack for 19-20 year olds who are mad at their dad (all of them in case you were wondering).

A year or so passed I felt weary and strung-out and unsuccessful with a humanities diploma, much to everyone’s amusement. (But fuck them I thought; watch language become weaponized once humanity understands that psychology is last frontier to master and English is the language of conquest and money–2 of my 3 favorite things).


A month passes and I’m waking up with rot gut. Drinking liquor on the reg is wrecking my liver–i piss every 45 minutes, and pass out sporadically throughout the day. I thought I was gonna be Don Draper, not Billy Bob Thornton from Bad Santa.

Shit’s grim.

I walk up to Hopcat and sit down at the bar. A cute redhead hands me a menu and a water.

“What would you like to drink?” She asks in her best faux-cheerful- because-I-work-for-tips smile. I respect the effort.

“What’s on special?” (Always ask this to order the cheapest shit without coming off as a cheap ass).

“Nothing.”

“Fugg…gimme a whiskey dour…double,” I tell her definitively. “Remember the liquor

It’s quiet here so I decide to write. The booze let’s me chill out, giving me that swinging-dick swagger. I dig into my change pocket and, lo and behold, an adderall is tucked in there. Nicee.

As Gavin Mcinnes put it, when it comes to writing, booze gives it ball, adderall forces the words out, and weed makes it hilarious.

I’ve no weed, unfortunately, but Im a man possessed at the keyboard.

So far, the two decent pieces are poems, derivative to such extent some clever minds might suspect I was parodying the originals.

At midnight I peruse what I’ve written so far, and like anything unedited, it’s like you’re newborn child turns out incredibly ugly.


I saw my self in the pimply barback

He was the idiot

freshman, getting

stabbed over

and over

again

by the too pretty

bartenders

asking him favors,

calling him pretty little nothings

like

babe,

sweetie,

honey,

and I’m sure

if he’s anything

like myself,

those words

will shake him

and lobotomize his dreams

until

they no longer

mean

anything

And gradually his impotent rage

and furiously hormones

welling up inside.

Later, when he

Becomes knowing, sour,

bitter, exhaustingly experienced,

(perhaps

hearing

those pretty nothing will confound)

as he rues

his failing

courage

and

secretly hope that

he’ll always

remember

this and anytime

before

when they were

still

the sweetest

anything’s.


Fuck, I’m sappy and bitter-cynically realistic.

“Get me another double!” I shout to the bartender.

I ain’t Bukowski, and a gnawing feeling or maybe it’s belly boasting that I’m better than that cantankerous old lonely drunk, pounding away with despair with only his cats as company.

The thought frightens me as much as it titillates. I respect my predecessors, but I wanna beat them, badly. On one sort of Freudian shit, I wanna fuck my my ma, ya smell me…..just a little bit ( you’re lying if you don’t)….ok, that’s fucked up to say.

I meant to say,”Congrats pops, you did some good work.” And on one weird reptilian instinct, I wanna beat him at life-wife, money, status, career. All of it.

But I’m my fathers son, after all and I can’t fight it.

I emulated Bukowski as if he were a father, and only discovered a ghostly competitor, needing to be slaughtered.

I see you C.B. and salute ya. You’re cool, man, but I’m after you and will surpass you, which I’m sure you already peeped.

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