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MORE FROM JARED YOUNG
As a child, I thought of myself as a prodigy. In the sixth grade I picked out a paperback from the school library for no other reason than it appeared difficult to read and would, I imagined, suggest to teachers and classmates a secret literary acumen.
Dick Loudon, growing increasingly depressed about his middling career as a writer of do-it-yourself books, purchases a Connecticut guesthouse and moves there with his emotionally distant former mistress Joanna. But the chill New England air only serves to heighten the tension between them, and soon Dick begins an affair with Stephanie, the chambermaid.
When I was a kid, I spent summers with my father in the suburbs of Regina. I remember his basement with particular fondness. A small kitchenette, a pullout couch and wood panelling on the walls. The rabbit-eared television, when you flipped the dial fast, sounded like a dry-firing machine gun. I would hide down there in the dark, laying on my back, feet against the wall, reading comic books and sipping Slushies.
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Of the myriad reasons I should have loved Russell Smith’s Girl Crazy was that it was sexually explicit and had the reputation, when it was published four years ago, of being vaguely misogynistic, which at the very least should have aroused in me (besides arousal, generally) a defensiveness in favor of that endangered apex predator, the sex-obsessed white male protagonist.
Shortly after 10 a.m. last Wednesday morning, I was heading back to my office from a meeting at a nearby coffee shop. The walk is only 100 feet from door to door. Because I’ve been conditioned by the conveniences of modern technology to fill even the briefest intervals with digital stimulus, I pulled out my smartphone and punched in my passcode.
jared young @ McSweeney's
FILM REVIEWS BY JARED YOUNG
Read more of Jared Young's film writing at Dear Cast and Crew.
Other Writing by Jared Young
Based on the true story of a pride of lions who escaped from the Baghdad Zoo during the second American invasion of Iraq, Brian K. Vaughan's new graphic novel Pride of Baghdad wastes no time in distinguishing itself as a harsher, truer-to-life cousin of the allegorical anthropomorphic tradition.
We were eighteen, living together in Regina, in that apartment near the university. It must have been May, because the snow was gone and we were in the habit of taking the kittens outside and letting them play in the grass.
For centuries, impoverished farmers in Northern Thailand harvested insects for sustenance. Today, in urban centres, traditional dishes like spicy red-ant soup and flame-roasted giant dung-beetles are served from motorcycles with sidecar-trolleys.