Monday, August 25, 2003

Hobohemian Rhapsody 

In every dive bar in Center City, there lurks "The Writer." He's there when the
bar opens. He smokes alot. He reads alot of Hemingway. He knows alot about the
Beats & finds Kerouac's last years romantic. The Writer's penning the erstwhile
GAM- the long-since-gone concept of the Great American Novel, or the collection
of poems that would change all of literature if only someone would realize his
genius. But this hasn't happened, because the "elites" have no time for his 50
year-old ideas, which are "ahead of their time." He's tortured by the callous
world's lack of acceptance. He drinks to numb the pain of his sensitive soul.
Every college dropout knows that it's alot more glamorous to be an alcoholic
writer, instead of a plain-old alcoholic.

I can walk into Bar X(fill in the blank) on any given evening. The Writer is
soused from a full shift of drinking. I cringe as someone in his proximity lets
it slip that I'm a poet. The Writer asks me if I'm published- that always makes
a difference to this guy. He(trust me, it's always a "he")pitches his greatness
& out comes his notebook. He wants my honest take, because he respects my
opinion- though we don't know each other & he's never heard of me. I warn him
that I'm going to be honest, but I'm never that cruel. I search long & hard for
words of constructive advice. He never speaks to me again & tells his booze
buddies I'm a hack.

If you are this guy or know someone like him, there's a great lifestyle
magazine available. I picked up the latest issue of MODERN DRUNKARD Magazine.
There are informative articles like:

The Faded Glory of the Martini Lunch-
Why it went away, and why we must bring it back

Juicing on the Job-
The working drunk's guide to getting cockeyed on the clock

But my favorite article, geared to the guy reading Camus at the bar:

Is the wino lifestyle for you?

This article lays out the the requirements & rewards of living as a hobohemian.
Desire is not enough. You must have 4 of the 5 qualities.

5)Disdain for the institutionalized belief in the Work=Reward=Security=Comfort

Although Cincinatti Slim(the article's author)realizes that it sounds like more
work than it first seemed, we are put at ease by his long list of hobohemian
leisure activities, like- nappin',bus-stop lurkin',stinkin' up the library,
shopping cart races, urinatin' in front of folks, actin' crazy & gettin'

The magazine is a great gift for anyone flirting with hobohemianism. Some
people buy flowers for themselves. For The Writer, nothing tells you love
yourself like a good load & a copy of MODERN DRUNKARD. Put down your TROPIC OF
CANCER & embrace your future!


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