Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Narcotic Effluvium Christmas

I was reading KITCHEN CONFIDENTIAL by Anthony Bourdain and NAKED LUNCH by William S. Burroughs at the same time. I picked up the latter and read, "Like a vampire bat he gives off a narcotic effluvium, a dank green mist that anesthetizes his victims and renders them helpless in his enveloping presence." And for a minute my brain sincerely tried to figure out which of Anthony Bourdain's friends he was writing about, because that's kind of how Anthony Bourdain writes about his friends! But of course it is a monster from NAKED LUNCH. I briefly thought I was reading the other book, you see. Grand times! Grand times here on Christmas Day in the morning. Interestingly (ha ha ha! I know you are not interested - you don't even exist!) Bourdain and Burroughs both enjoyed childhoods of wealth and privilege (about which both have written; Burroughs: "I remember the lamplighter lighting the gas streetlights and the huge, black, shiny Lincoln... I could put down one of those nostalgic routines about the old German doctor who lived next door and the rats running around in the back yard and my aunt's electric car and my pet toad that lived by the fish pond") and went on to shoot up in grim alleyways, is that interesting? (Do note: as I was typing this, Bourdain appeared on twitter, assembling a Barbie Dream House.) I leave you with the final words of "A Christmas Thought" by Barry Hannah, which I recently read aloud (from Jimmy's copy) at the holiday meeting of Good Idea Club (seen here; photo by Bill Boyle, featuring a portion of Lizzie): "When you read and wonder, for six seconds, about the random, pointless violence of these days, then are blissful it was not you, having, really, a better day, stop and think: Could not these felons be, really, God's children, loose, adept, so hungry and correct in our world?"