Posts Tagged ‘drug addict’

Yesterday’s News and Burroughs Month: Double inaugural editions and an introduction

September 9, 2010

Mexico, September 8, 1951 — The Daily News reports that, in a drinking game which turned tragic, writer William S. Burroughs accidentally shot wife Joan Vollmer fatally in the head. He was aiming for the glass of gin on top of her head.

William Seward Burroughs, 37, first admitted, then denied today that he was playing William Tell when his gun killed his pretty, young wife during a drinking party last night.

via Le Revérénd Docteur right here on the wordpress.

Apparently William S. Burroughs was also a heroin addict and later threw out being bi and went whole-hog homosexual, being one of the first to identify as “queer” and reclaim the word as positive. The latter I’m way down for and think is great, the former …? — I don’t get how people can be addicted to heroin and still live long and functioning lives. Heroin addicts, clue me in on how this is possible? Seems so inescapably destructive a drug that it kind of puzzles me. I suppose having a lot of money helps. Then you don’t engage in all the risky behaviors poorer addicts do in order to acquire money to buy the drug. This is speculation: I am neither well-off nor a heroin addict. I like to try and take a “never say never” approach to life but I feel safe asserting that I will probably never be either.

I’ve used this picture before, but I cannot get enough of Burroughs’ delightfully priggish and pedantic expression. Looking straight down his nose at Kerouac and no doubt both laced to the gills. 1953, Greenwich Village.

I say “apparently,” about those factoids from his life story because, you guys, it’s super embarassing and inexplicable, but I know pretty much zip about William S. Burroughs. I don’t know how it happened, but seriously — virtually zip. I don’t even know if I’ll like all that I plan to read by him, but I was idly flipping through my millions of pictures and run across the scan of the newspaper clipping. I decided that the coincidence of a) searching for someone new to focus on this month; b) toying with an idea for a feature called Yesterday’s News that would be news out of history that had also literally been printed the day before the present date, rather than the more hackneyed “on this date in history…” etc, and c) finding something on Burroughs that’d been published yesterday in history* was too much synchronicity to ignore. So today marks the beginning of Burroughs Month. Welcome!

To be clear: Joan Vollmer was killed September 7. The article is dated September 8, and is the “yesterday’s news” to which the category will henceforth refer. This is partly a “how good am I at searching archives” challenge as well.

edit: Please read the comments, where DaveW takes us to school in re: heroin and Ms. Vollmer. Thanks for the info and insights, Dave!

The Voice of the Internet Judges Good Ol’ E.

July 7, 2010

“The Voice of the Internet judges Good Ol’ E”

Voice of the Internet: Hello, E. I am the Voice of the Internet and I am here to judge your journal.

Good Ol’ E: Fuck a bunch of Voice of the Internet. You’re not going to make me apologize for anything.

VOI: We’ll see. Let’s start: Your blog lacks a strong male figure.

GO’E: Your mom lacks a strong male figure.

Look out: Jessica Rabbit will hit you with a purse, next three miles.

VOI: Yes, and I have often wondered if this is part of what lead her to abandon me and be a drug-shooting hooker who is not one of the ones with a heart of gold at all. So thanks for reminding me, Miss Apology-Not McInsensitivepants.

GO’E: Shit. Okay, well, still I must say that is a totally forced insult name, even with allowances for being made up on the fly and under duress.

VOI: I have difficulty making up insult names, on the fly or otherwise, because I have short-term memory loss as a result of a head injury from being dropped as a baby.

GO’E: That explains a lot.

Ir♥sh boy Gabriel Byrne for the priest picture because why not?

VOI: Oh? It happened when my grandmother dropped me upon hearing the news of my underground-decommissioned-firetruck-racing father’s accidental decapitation when he was saying Mass because he was also a priest on top of racing. Though I was only a few weeks old, my grandmother was holding me since, as I have just mentioned, my mother is a drug-addicted hooker who abandoned me. Does that “explain a lot”?

GO’E: Okay, actually no, because what the mothership was a bedamned underground-decommissioned-firetruck-racing priest even doing with a drug-addicted hooker? And how do you race a firetruck?

VOI: He accompanied a negotiator to a police standoff with my mother in a motel room, a standoff which was over of course drugs and hooking, and my father succumbed to Stockholm Syndrome and I was conceived. I don’t know how you race a firetruck* because my father it seems was the only one and the knowledge died with him that awful day in Mass when he was decapitated by accident.

GO’E: If he was the only one, then was it like a beat-your-own-best-time thing or else who did he firetruck-race against?

VOI: We don’t know. They have never come forward despite the reward.

GO’E: I am getting straight up interested despite my own damned self. What reward?

Just pretend Gabriel Byrne is behind the wheel in the cab.

VOI: My grandmother has posted the offer of a reward to anyone with information about my father’s firetruck-racing, as we did not know about the secret racing life he led until after his death, when we discovered an embroidered “Four-time Underground-decommissioned-firetruck-race Winner” robe** in his effects. When she passes on, which will be soon because she has recently been diagnosed with cataracts —

GO’E: Not typically fatal.

VOI: — plus liver, stomach, and ovarian cancer —

GO’E: Shit. Sorry.

VOI: — then in accordance with her wishes, I will add to the reward fund with any leftover money after we settle up the estate. I anticipate that the reward will go as high as about $3500.

GO’E: Huh. I need to say: for being the Voice of the Internet, you are awfully fucking pretty specific.

VOI: You really say cusses a lot.

GO’E: What the what? After all this shit, you’re going to try to bring me down with some motherfucking ridiculous chump change criticism like that? “You really say cusses a lot.” Like, dude, how even old are you?

VOI: I am ten and I can’t say I am appreciating your king-size cusses.

GO’E: Oh, effing cheezits. This is going all kinds of not well. Heck. Know what? I’m sorry.

VOI: So the Voice of the Internet wins? Against you?

GO’E: Dude. The Voice of the Internet wins the whole dad-blessed thing against Good Ol’ E for alwaystimes, okay?


*for the record you underground race decommissioned firetrucks the way you race regular cars ‘cept you do it a-way out in the country at this quarry behind my friend’s stepfather’s ranch and you better believe you run the sirens THE WHOLE TIME it is the fucking shit sorry kid but only a king-size cuss will do for how much of the fucking shit firetruck-racing is: all of the fucking shit okay so pass it on but try to keep it underground.

**He actually won five times but they don’t know it because he left that robe in a truck stop in Tulsa. Total bummer cause he loved that thing.