Friday, April 28, 2006

from David Cross' blog;

Excerpts From the Galley Copy of James Frey's Latest Memoir: "Lesson Learned".

Hey everyone,
I was lucky enough to get my hands on an advance copy of James Frey's newest book. It's a soul-searching and no holds barred look at his life since appearing on the "Oprah" show. This shit is crazy! What a tough life this guy has had.

-David


Excerpts From the Galley Copy of James Frey's Latest Memoir: "Lesson Learned".


From Chapter One - "I left the Harpo studios in Chicago in a state of shock. When I accepted Oprah's invitation to go back on her show and tell my side of the story, I didn't think that I would be treated so unfairly. I felt as if a couple of angry skate punks who "didn't like my attitude" ambushed me. It reminded me of the time I was ambushed by a bunch of angry skate punks who "didn't like my attitude". I had awoken from a nineteen-day bender to find myself floating face down in a canal in Amsterdam. I came to with a knife in my chest and a tattoo on my left nipple which mysteriously read: "100% Goth!!" I blurbled something in Arabic to a passing man on his bike and he was decent enough to stop and fish me out. After drying myself off, I raped him and stole his bike. I regret this behavior now of course. I knew it was wrong then too but that's what makes me such a monster. Or rather made me such a monster. That and all the drugs and alcohol I was addicted to. I'm better now thanks to rehab. But that's an entirely different true story, which has already appeared in my last book, "An Unverifiable True Remembering". Anyway, after getting myself a breakfast (consisting of a fifth of Popovitch Grain alcohol and some dirty socks I found in a garbage can), I set about looking for an explanation as to why I was in Amsterdam, and where I could get my next "fix man". I lurched forward towards the liedzenplaza to see if I could find Bruno Ganz who always did right by me when I was in town. I made sure to catch all the projectile vomit I could into an empty Burger King bag that I carried around with me for that express purpose, for I knew I would be hungry later and would spend every coin I had on my "next fix". I had perfectly lurched no more then 10 feet...or thirteen miles? Maybe it was thirteen miles. I can't remember exactly. This is a memoir and that's French I believe for "memory", which let's admit, is a little clouded by all the "drugs" and "alcohol" that I was totally addicted to. Anyway, I was walking along the plaza with my now useless leg. Wait, did I mention that I was so fucked up that I accidentally (?) let a transit bus run over my foot and didn't realize it until later that day when a young Amsterdamian child pointed to it and started to cry? Well, that did happen. I just remembered it just now so...yeah. Because of my now missing foot (I had it amputated without any anesthesia. I did this so that I could save $50 which I could then spend on getting a "fix" for my latest "high".) I was having a difficult time keeping my balance. Despite my best efforts I found myself bumping into a group of five gutter punks sitting on a curb. One of them got up and threw a kettle of boiling water in my face. They were making tea as I recall it. I said, "Hey now, what was that all about?" Which was difficult because the top layer of my face skin was peeling off. One of them mentioned not liking my attitude and I remember that setting off some crazy interior switch deep, deep inside me. Maybe it was because of my shitty worthless life or maybe it was all my self-loathing at not being able to make something out of myself despite graduating Summa Cum Laude from the Sorbonne and almost being nominated for a Noble Peace Prize for my work in the Congo, but when that switch switched it was as if my veins were drained of blood and filled with super strong adrenalized juicy juice. I got an odd and calm look in my remaining face, stared the ten of them straight in the eyes and said, "I'm bad you motherfuckers. I'm a really bad man. I am so jacked up on alcohol and various speeds, like, crystal meth, cocaine, ice, snowcaps, bobbyrocks, po-po's, jaggersticks, glass monkeys, and even two grams of pure Canadian sizzledots. That I can barely see straight. If you're not careful I just may eat your eyeballs with my rotting teeth (I had "meth mouth" from all the alcohol I had been drinking) Now if you don't mind, I've got a date with a bottle of 100 proof Bukowski". The twenty of them looked at me with the same curiosity that a Mexican Ranch Hand has when tending to the cattle, and he comes across a great big steaming pile of bullshit. They looked silently at each other and then back to me. After a tense couple of seconds the leader started to slowly but very deliberately clap his hands. One by one the others joined in and, picking up the tempo, parted themselves so that I may pass through. It was such a touching gesture filled with hope that it is seared into my memory and I will certainly never forget it. I walked through with a new found sense of humility and humanity. I walked for another couple of feet when I slowly stopped and turned around to express my gratitude. However, much to my surprise, they had all vanished. As I looked about for them I could have sworn I heard a tiny childs voice whisper to me: "You truly are the baddest mofo in all of the Netherlands. Go, and spread your word. But do it in book form. And not as fiction either. Good luck James Frey". And so that night I set down this tale on paper...


***

Chapter Two:
...Except the papers were confiscated at the border because it was determined that I was a security risk due to the fact that my vomit pants had blood on them. I had meant to wash either the vomit or the blood off the pants but had forgotten after I had gotten "high" by hyperventilating and spinning around as fast as I could after eating some Heroin cake I had bought from an African. So I had to set about trying to piece the pieces of the story together. Honestly there must have been at least a million pieces if not maybe a half dozen or so. I can't remember too well. I was so "high" on the fresh blood of the Burmese child that I drank in a "highish" haze that it's tough to get all the "facts" "straight". I'll do my best though. That's all anyone can or should ask of me. Forever. Just to do my best. Let's see, what happened? I talked about the one punky guy with the leather jacket throwing his cup of iced coffee at me and my face falling off and down on the dirty Amsterdam ground right? (My face is deathly allergic to certain iced coffees getting on it– it stings!) I talked about how they jumped me and made me take out my appendix without any anesthesia. Man, what a mess I was. I desperately needed to get some help or I was gonna die. I wasn't about to spend my last days of life rotting in some Prison in Ohio with a bunkmate named "Lefty" (serving six consecutive life sentences for raping and killing all of his cell mates. He was originally brought in on a misdemeanor for spray painting) and a ten-pound pet rat that I nicknamed: "Aeolis" after the Greek God of the winds. No way man. I decided that rather then get help, I would break out of the prison that night or die trying. Much later in life I would decide to get rich or die tryin', but that's another (this) story. I set about looking for my way out of this hell that was the Ohio Maximum State Prison. Officially* recognized as the most brutal prison in the world. I called over the guard who had stabbed me in the chin when I tried to beat him up for calling me a pussy the night before. He sauntered over and spit on me. I told him that that he just made a grave mistake. I told him how one day I would write a book and mention all the wrongs I had been wronged, and everyone who ever crossed me would end up getting their shit called on in book form. Who knows? Maybe I would wind up going on the t.v. talk show circuit and telling the truth about the brutality that goes on in American prisons. I'm sure Montel Williams or maybe even Dr, Phil would be interested in my story. After that he killed me.

More To Come Later,
Sincerely,
James Frey

*Prison Stuff Monthly

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