I’m a lazy person. I work as little as I can possibly get away with, I take my trash cans out the night before so I don’t have to wake up at 8am on Wednesdays, and sometimes I’m too lazy to be a feminists. Oh, I’m also stupid. Like “flunked remedial math in community college more than once” stupid. It’s ok, I’m too lazy to care.
I guess when I found out that my grandfather was a coal miner, I was like “fuck it.” In his honor, I’m going to do nothing as much as humanly possible. And being stupid, I believed myself and here we are at age 54.
Not surprisingly I’ve always loved the slobs, the underdogs. The people who never hustle. To this day, every time I see someone jogging I quote (from either an episode of Metalocalypse or Woody Allen) “you’re going to die! You’re going to die and maggots are going to eat your corpse!” which is a very shitty way to make friends. Especially friends who will be healthy enough to drag your fat ass after falling down and breaking your hip.
When I graduated high school in the mid 1980’s, my friend Cary gave me The Original National Lampoon 1964 High School Yearbook Parody , written by PJ O’Rourke who died today. This book made me want to write comedy and more importantly it made me laugh. I’ve had more than two copies because I’ve worn off the binding. Why this spoke to me so much, I’ll never know. This book is so white, so upper middle class, and so douchey that it could probably date rape me and get away with it even in 2022! I loved it anyway. It’s what the culture gave me.
At an in-person writer’s workshop in 2018 I was apologizing all over myself for liking the Ramones and never seeking out women punk rockers. (It’s so fucking exhausting being a feminists). Seeing my anxiety, facilitator Sari Botton comforted me in my uncomfortable, metal folding chair by saying “Don’t apologize, it’s what the culture gave you.”
Growing up during the Reagan era, women seemed to take a giant step backwards. Turns out that yearning for the 1950’s made for some great television but didn’t help young women find a way that didn’t dead end on the front porch of some guy you were supposed to marry. In his own assbackward way, in pointing out the “Future Stewardess” club O’Rourke spoke to me and sadly enough still does.
Like most of my comedy heroes, Mr. O’Rourke was troubling. I’m not a fan of his politics but I loved the way he wrote about our country. When we disagree with grace, humor and a lot of self-deprecation we are much, much more tolerable. Even a lazy dumbass like me knows that.