April 25, 2006

Wrecking Crew


I love books about heroin abuse, I love books about the down-and-out periphery of Hollywood, I love baseball. There’s basically no way I wasn’t going to like this book.

In how many books can you read this:

When I looked down, I saw that my fingers were raw and bloody. They looked the same way years before, when I played drums in the well-known punk band Bad Religion. Back then, the pain seemed well earned, a bloody testament to youthful fury I had used to propel the loud minimalist beats. Now I just felt stupid for not having worn batting gloves.

Myspace works. I found out about this book from the Myspace page. Otherwise, I might notta. Because I’m out of it. Loved this book. Made me appreciate L.A. a lot more, which I needed.

It’s weird that one review of my novel has been reviewed as having "compassion." Mostly because I don’t feel much compassion for Hollywood in any form. Or at least not when I was writing the book. This book is eye-opening about all those people trying to struggle to get by in Hollywood. One guy says, it’s better to be an old has-been than an old wanna-be. Most people don’t ever get the chance to say that. This book really does have compassion for those cast aside by this city.

I used to think there was no lower form of life than someone who acted in commercials or sitcoms. Like a lot of people, having a kid has changed my sense of integrity. If you’re working, then good. You go to an audition with hundreds of other people--how can it not be flattering if you land the role, whatever it is. If you’re also doing decent stuff as well as paying work, then good too. I guess I take issue with people who’s dream is to end up on a sitcom. But still, hard to fault them. They’re making a living. Better than waiting tables, better than the much more degrading shit the world can throw at you.

This doesn’t change my perception of there being too much emphasis put on celebrity. It fucks up the world. We wouldn’t have George Bush as President if people didn’t worship at the alter of celebrity. He had the appearance of a strong President--the brush clearing, Mission Accomplished, Texas drawl, ALL fake, like a H’wood action hero. It’s backfiring now because style can only take you so far, but Hollywood worship is tied into this country electing a lying dimwit for President. It also doesn’t make it any less weird that Tom Cruise conveniently had his kid right before his next movie is released. It seems timed: the birth of his child with a movie release. As if they waited to release the news. If that’s not a case of fucked-up psychopathology, I don’t know what is.

I’m getting very far off the subject of the book, Wrecking Crew, but these are some of the things I thought about while reading. This book’s as much about struggling to make it in Hollywood as it is about baseball. It’s the best punk rock baseball memoir you’ll ever read. Makes you proud to be a misfit. Really meaningful to read about people trying to overcome the crap in their lives and not being cynical about a game like baseball.

By the way the Mets are 12-7. A rougher road recently, but things are looking a lot better. Life has sucked for them and their fans these last few years. Depressing really. They finally don’t make you want to kill yourself. There's confidence that they can actually win. A note to Vertical Insanity, who’s less optimistic.


Natalia said...

You know, for the past six years, I've been wondering: WHY BUSH?

And this is probably the closest thing I'll ever get to a real answer.

Thank you.

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