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4:18 p.m. - 2023-10-03
Writers You Read When You Were In Your Twenties And Now You Feel Embarrassed For Having Read And Enjoyed Their Writing
I was working at the libary today, shelving. Non-fiction. I came across an unshelved item, and, following Library Custom, brought it to the circ counter to check-in and reshelve it. What was the book, you ask? It was (and thanks for asking!) a collection of advice columns by Dan Savage. His
(I think syndicated) columns used to appear in free weekly newspapers when that was a thing. I enjoyed his column. It was ribald, witty, occasionally insightful, and a pleasant weekly diversion. Also, it turns out he had a creepy take on romantic relationships that involved subjugation and dominance and he was really into harshing on people whose body weight exceeds his ideal, presumably whatever his weight is. Dan Savage is a witty asshole, but he's first and foremost an asshole.

So, I told myself: Self, let's take the asshole out of circulation so young people who haven't been wisened by life experience won't be influenced by an asshole. I took the book to the Library Backroom (it's right by Circ!), checked it in, and shoved it in my backpack, with the intention of taking it home, tossing it in recycling, and getting Creepy Columnist out of circulation. I felt pretty self-content.

THEN, I had the realization that I'm just doing the same crap that the current crop of American nazis are trying to do. Taking any book out of public circulation is limiting the public's access to information, whether the information is correct and helpful or just a bunch of bigoted asshole (Dan Savage) ravings. Everyone needs to see both in order for us to have an educated and aware populace.

So then I reshelved the asshole's book.

OTHER assholes include:

Bukowski: gah. Such a piece of misogynist shit.

Henry Miller: also gah, but he was a better writer than the Buk, at least.

Whoever Wrote That One Book That Was All Sex Scenes From The Eighties And The Lady Had A Weird Hat And We Were All Required To Read It In College And Maybe It Was Czech And There Was A Movie

And probably many more!

There are a few great writers and many, many terrible ones, and let's make for gaddamn sure that everyone has access to them all.


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