Erections, Ejaculations, Exhibitions, and General Tales of Ordinary Madness ? (1 Viewer)

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caraculo

I am halfway through this short story collection, and noticed a few things which I'd like to clarify.

For example, in a story he describes a 3 some with his girlfriend and two of her friends. But he was the only one who was aware of the situation, since the others were sleeping, and he switched holes after each job was done. If I remember correctly, this is the same situation described in Factotum, during that spell he was living at the house of that rich old man?

Then the story where he learns to bet at the races. During an idle weekend, he suggests his g/f to do something to kill some time, in order not to hit the bottle since he was still recovering from a hospital spell, and she takes him to the races. In a few minutes he learns the ropes and starts winning money. This is really how Bukowski first discovered the races? (and apparently win money)

The rape story of a little girl by a paedo...what's with that?

And what about the story about him in the hospital, lying on his death bed and saved in the very last moment by his father who managed to give him a blood transfusion. The first thing he does when he walks away is go to a bar and order a beer. Is this event real?
 
caraculo, take a deep breath and calm down. Sounds like you're hyperventilating on Bukowski and that's not necessarily a bad thing but pace it, young fellow, pace it. When I was young, one of the worst hazards to my young life was nearly choking to death on Bazooka Joe bubblegum. A youngin' like myself would cram my mouth full of bubblegum and Bazooka Joe would pack a laugh with every bite and I'd damn near choke to death laughing. Now what troubles me with your post is that you may be having difficulty in understanding fiction from reality and you are biting off more than you can chew and choking on it. Just keep reading and I believe you'll find your second wind with Buk. If that fails and you still don't get Buk, or his sense of humor, then maybe he's simply not right for you. Best to you.
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
With Bukowski, it's probably half true, half fiction. I'm not sure which stories fall into either category, but he does make stuff up. It's fiction, sometimes autobiographical fiction, but fiction. I need to reread that book. I was last through it the year it came out.
 
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caraculo

caraculo, take a deep breath and calm down.
I am as calmed as a stone. But being calmed and having literary doubts can go hand in hand. I was told Bukowski wrote all his stuff based on his real experiences. Well, I read Factutus, and thought "okay"...now I am reading Tales of Ordinary Madness ,and find the same scenes and situations from Factotum, but thrown in a diferent way, and I think " mmmm, so all this stuff is just made up?"

I dont really care what part is real and what part is made up as long as I have a feeling the author is honest. You can enjoy reading Lord of the Rings, you know it's all fantasy but you feel the author introduced the fact in a reliable way.

If I am not wrong, was Bukowski himself who admited in interviews the autobiographical nature of his work, right?

But introducing something as "the real deal", and then finding out diferent versions, just puts me off, I feel slightly dissapointed, you no longer connect with an author when you cant trust him.

You say I dont get his sense of humor? Perhaps you are right, I didnt laught at all reading how a man rapes a 6 year old kid.
 

1fsh2fsh

I think that I think too much
Founding member
something tells me this Bukowski fellow ain't gonna be your cup of tea.....
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
I was told Bukowski wrote all his stuff based on his real experiences. Well, I read Factutus, and thought "okay"...now I am reading Tales of Ordinary Madness ,and find the same scenes and situations from Factotum, but thrown in a diferent way, and I think " mmmm, so all this stuff is just made up?"

caraculo, Bukowski often reused his material but that does'nt mean it's totally made up. The facts are the same, it's just the setting which is different because he did blend facts with fiction. Also, he wrote many stories which weren't based on his own experiences.

I didnt laught at all reading how a man rapes a 6 year old kid.

Who said it was a funny story you're supposed to laugh at? It's not a funny story, of course. What we have here is a story told in part from the viewpoint of the rapist and that's rare, I think. Whether you like the story or not, is another question.

This is really how Bukowski first discovered the races?

Yes, his girlfriend took him to the races and that's how he got introduced to the sport.

The first thing he does when he walks away is go to a bar and order a beer. Is this event real?

Who knows? I tend to believe so because he mentioned it in different contexts.
I recommend you read some of the Bukowski biographies. Then you'll find out which stories are based on facts, at least to some degree.
 
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caraculo

Who knows? I tend to believe so because he mentioned it in different contexts.
I recommend you read some of the Bukowski biographies. Then you'll find out which stories are based on facts, at least to some degree.
Well, I am not really interested in the life of any author (except a few exceptions, of course), it's only their work what catches my eye. As you said, it was/is not common to write about child rape from the viewpoint of the rapist, I guess perhaps he was on an experimental mode. The curious thing is that the name of the rapist (cant tell you now, I have the book somewhere else) appears on another story, one about Bukowski sharing for a couple days a flat with a fat lady in the French quarter of New Orleans, the rapist himself was the one who introduced Bukowski to the lady, so I guess there must be "something" behind.

Anyway, I see you are from CPHN? I started learning Danish a few months ago, but I had to give up because of the pronunciation. I was adviced to learn Norwegian instead, it's much more easy to learn and Norwegians seem to understand Swedish and Danish people without problem...I got a basic level already, I wish I could work in Norway for a few years and master the language.

Jeg ma ga, hyggelig a mote deg. Ser deg senere!

PD:I cant find the a with the little o on the top nor the transversally crossed o on my keyboard, it sucks.
 
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Rekrab

Usually wrong.
Autobiographical fiction or stories "based on" real events are not the same as non-fiction writing. Bukowski wrote short stories meant to entertain, not to report the facts. He took bits and pieces of reality, mixed them up, changed things when it suited his purposes. If the stories weren't highly entertaining, no one would give a damn if they were true or not. There's nothing unusual about an author playing with the fact to make a good story. It's what they do.
 
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caraculo

Autobiographical fiction is an oximoron, dont you think? As you said, if the stories weren't highly entertaining no one would give a damn if they were true or not.

But what I find hard to swallow, is the repetitive term of "honest" to describe Bukowski's work. Honest about what, exactly? Imagine for a second you found out that Anna Franks journal was a less autobiographical work than we have thought until now, and there was more fiction in there...yeah, she was in Holland during the Nazi occupation, but she spent her time in the local cinema watching movies and eating popcorn. Wouldnt you feel somewhat cheated?

The thing is that nobody asked Bukowski to become Bukowski, ie, an author obsessed about booze, sleazy sex , and horse-racing, he chose to do that out of his free will, nobody put a gun on his head and forced him to. And he decided to document all those anecdotes and experiences so the rest of us could enjoy. Fine. But I just find it weird all this ambiguity, so many identity games like if he just dared to suggest in a confuse way that there was a part of himself in Henry Chinaski but he didnt have the balls to go all the way...it's a bit like a white noise attitude.

He proudly talks about poverty, homelessness, the skid row, but you get this impression that he would sell his own mother in order to enter in the celebrity club and rub shoulders with those he criticizes in his stories. Have you seen him on interviews? He looks so affected, it's like he is giving the speech at the Nobel Award ceremony.He talks about love, and at the same time he treats women like sexual objects, he talks about literature but you can count with the fingers of one hand the authors he mentions, donno, the whole thing seems a bit contradictory, there's something that doesnt match.

Well, that's the impression I have, I could be wrong, of course.

Peace.
 
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hank solo

Just practicin' steps and keepin' outta the fights
Moderator
Founding member
Okay, we get it - you don't get it. We won't persuade you that your assumptions are wrong and you won't persuade us that they're right.

I suggest you try another author.

Don't waste your time with this one. Peace baby.
 
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caraculo

Bon't try!

It's funny you mention that. I read an interview with the widow (cant remember her name), about the meaning of the "dont try" epitaph on his grave. She basically said that people should read it as "dont try, if you really want to do something, then you should just go and do it, be brave and go for it instead of only trying and blaa blaaa..."

And I thought, "okay, so he meant JUST DO IT", like nikes logo.

If he wanted to say just do it, why did he want dont try as his epitaph??? Why this bloody ambiguity? Yes, no..., perhaps, well maybe... Jeez, it's even irritating,Lol.

Sorry guyz, I guess I am taking the whole thing too seriously, I'll better take a break or I'll have an epileptic attack or something.

See you around.
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
Anyway, I see you are from CPHN? I started learning Danish a few months ago, but I had to give up because of the pronunciation. I was adviced to learn Norwegian instead, it's much more easy to learn and Norwegians seem to understand Swedish and Danish people without problem...I got a basic level already, I wish I could work in Norway for a few years and master the language.

Jeg ma ga, hyggelig a mote deg. Ser deg senere!

PD:I cant find the a with the little o on the top nor the transversally crossed o on my keyboard, it sucks.

I don't know if Norwegian is easier to learn than Danish. I should think it's about the same since the two languages are very similar (Norway was part of Denmark until 1814), although there's naturally some differences in the pronunciation. The written languages are even more similar. We have many English and American people living here who speaks Danish fluently so it's not that difficult to learn
If you speak one of the three Scandinavian languages, then it's easy to understand the other two. Danish and Norwegian are more similar than Danish and Swedish or Norwegian and Swedish, because Swedish have some words you won't find in Danish and Norwegian, so it is a tad more difficult to understand.
Btw, how come you want to learn Danish or Norwegian?

Det var også hyggeligt at møde dig! Vi ses...

But what I find hard to swallow, is the repetitive term of "honest" to describe Bukowski's work. Honest about what, exactly?

Well, it's other people who writes that. You really should ask them. Personally, I find Bukowski very honest and open about his own life, and he does honestly describe parts of life we usually don't hear much about in literature.

...why did he want dont try as his epitaph???

Who says he wanted that? For all I know, it could've have been his wife's decision after his death. Maybe, "just do it", would've been a better choice, but it's certainly not something to get irritated about, I think.
Bukowski probably often heard people say, "I think I'll try and be a ...", to which he responded, "don't try". Simple as that.

The curious thing is that the name of the rapist (cant tell you now, I have the book somewhere else) appears on another story, one about Bukowski sharing for a couple days a flat with a fat lady in the French quarter of New Orleans, the rapist himself was the one who introduced Bukowski to the lady, so I guess there must be "something" behind.

The rapists name is Martin Blanchard. I don't recall there's a Martin Blanchard in any of the other stories. Maybe a Martin, but not Martin Blanchard. That Bukowski used the name Martin in another story, does'nt (necessarily) mean it's the same person in both stories. It's just some other guy also named Martin.
The guy in the story about the Fat Lady in New Orleans, "A Lovely Love Affair", is called Joe Blanchard, not Martin Blanchard. The fat lady, Marie, does talk about a guy named Marty, a boxer she used to know, but that's not the Martin Blanchard from the rapist story. I don't know if there's some kinda connection between Martin Blanchard and Joe Blanchard, or it's just Bukowski who recycled the name. Your guess is as good as mine.

He proudly talks about poverty, homelessness, the skid row, but you get this impression that he would sell his own mother in order to enter in the celebrity club and rub shoulders with those he criticizes in his stories.

Proudly? I never noticed that. Poverty etc. is not something to be proud of, or something to be desired, and I think Bukowski would agree.
As for your impression that Bukowski would sell his own mother to rub shoulders with those he criticizes, well, that your impression! Bukowski was a loner, and he disliked being part of a crowd. He liked to be left alone, and that fact does'nt jell with your impression, I think.

Maybe Bukowski is just not your cup of tea, because you do seem to take him and his writings too seriously. Why not enjoy it all instead of noticing discrepancies (real or imagined)?
 
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bospress.net

www.bospress.net
and to follow up on what the learned BUKFAN said, Bukowski certainly wanted financial security, but to say that he wanted to enter the celebrity club and rub elbows is 100% wrong. Once he was a celebrated underground hero, all kinds of famous people contacted him to try to hang out (like AXL Rose, at the height of his fame). He ignored those requests. There were others, I am sure, but he was just happier at home, drinking and writing than at a black tie event where he was expected to play the drunken dirty old man, which is what these celebrities wanted to see...

.and he did have something of an arrogant way of talking at times. i think that it would be hard to not get a bloated ego when so many people tell you that you are a genius. Plus, he seemed to be a biot like that even when he was very poor and unknown. Some people just give off that vibe. My wife accuses me of being cocky and arrogant. That is funny pictuing a broke, underemployed, bald, overweight guy being somehow cocky. Cocky about what?

Bill
 

chronic

old and in the way
"¢: A guy walks into a bar with his pet duck on his shoulder...

caraculo: Why did he have a duck on his shoulder?

"¢: I guess because it's his pet.

caraculo: Yes, but why would he have it on his shoulder? Wouldn't that be an uncomfortable place to carry him? Why didn't he carry him under his arm?

"¢: I guess it would be uncomfortable. Okay, he was carrying it under his arm.

caraculo: But you just said...

"¢: I was wrong... he was carrying it under his arm, okay?

caraculo: Do bars allow ducks in? I would think it would be a violation of health laws. And what kind of person has a duck for a pet anyway?

"¢: I don't know if bars allow ducks in. Anyway, the duck says to the bartender...

caraculo: A talking duck? That's just silly!

"¢: Yes it's silly... it's supposed to be a joke!

caraculo: But there's no such thing as a talking duck!

"¢: Oh, nevermind.
 
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mjp

Founding member
Every thread this guy started is contentious. Well, mildly contentious. He's like the world's most delicate troll. But a troll all the same.
 

nervas

more crickets than friends
You say I dont get his sense of humor? Perhaps you are right, I didnt laught at all reading how a man rapes a 6 year old kid.
Hey, you misquoted him! He said somewhere between the age of 6 AND 9. He didn't say 6! How dare you.
 

Gerard K H Love

Appreciate your friends
Every thread this guy started is contentious. Well, mildly contentious. He's like the world's most delicate troll. But a troll all the same.

But can we keep him anyway? I'll feed him and keep him in a jar on my desk....but eventually one of my friends will poke his eyes out with a sharp stick. Then he'll die and stink up my room like that toad.
 
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caraculo

I don't know if Norwegian is easier to learn than Danish. I should think it's about the same since the two languages are very similar (Norway was part of Denmark until 1814), although there's naturally some differences in the pronunciation. The written languages are even more similar. We have many English and American people living here who speaks Danish fluently so it's not that difficult to learn
If you speak one of the three Scandinavian languages, then it's easy to understand the other two. Danish and Norwegian are more similar than Danish and Swedish or Norwegian and Swedish, because Swedish have some words you won't find in Danish and Norwegian, so it is a tad more difficult to understand.
Well, the main problem for me with Danish was that the spelling and the pronunciation difer more than in Norwegian. I compared the pronunciation of both languages, and noticed that Norwegian is more easy to understand, so I just took the easy way, perhaps I am lazy, Lol.

I'd like to go there to work. Wages in the Scandinavian countries are 3 or 4 times higher than in Spain, so I think it would be a good financial move spending there a few years working hard, in 3 years one can save as much as working 8 years in Spain. The problem would be the weather, the thought of a Scandinavian winter is scary, but the beauty of women would make things up, I just love blonde walkirias.

About Bukowski, you are right, I got the names mixed up, there's a Joe Blanchard and a Martin Blanchard, it flew below the radar. I guess I agree with you: he's not my cup of tea at all, I've been reading his work for a few weeks, wondering why he's regarded a cult author, wondering where's the big deal.

At some times I think his style is like an online blogger :"I woke up and went to the kitchen, grabbed a beer from the freezer ,drank it while I saw thought the window the sun raising and walked back to bed and had a quicky with Linda; a few hours later I prepared myself some pasta and took a few beers, then went out for a walk", etc, I wonder how he would write nowadays at the age of internet.

Perhaps there's more of his work/life than meets the eye, I am sure about it. Anyway, I better stop contributing to this forum, I see some folks are getting a bit passive-agressive and it's a matter of time before I get banned, I know people from forums get a bit posessive about their icons and accept no respectful criticism.

I am glad to see there's balanced and educated people like yourself among Buk's fan, you raise the average.

Okay mate, keep on the good work, good luck.
 
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To think the poor soul will never know the pleasures of Ham on Rye, South of No North, The Last Night of the Earth Poems, Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame, etc. Tragic really. Back to Disney with you, caraculo.
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
Caraculo: an "honest" writer doesn't necessarily write factually. Bukowski wrote honestly about life, people. He didn't sugar-coat things. His stories had the power to piss off people because he was spilling the beans about them. He could change their names, make up little bits, exaggerate, and people still knew that he was revealing things they would have preferred he kept hidden. That's what people mean when they call Bukowski an honest writer.
 

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
About Bukowski, you are right, I got the names mixed up, there's a Joe Blanchard and a Martin Blanchard, it flew below the radar. I guess I agree with you: he's not my cup of tea at all, I've been reading his work for a few weeks, wondering why he's regarded a cult author, wondering where's the big deal.

At some times I think his style is like an online blogger :"I woke up and went to the kitchen, grabbed a beer from the freezer ,drank it while I saw thought the window the sun raising and walked back to bed and had a quicky with Linda; a few hours later I prepared myself some pasta and took a few beers, then went out for a walk", etc, I wonder how he would write nowadays at the age of internet.

Yeah, nothing wrong with not liking someone's writing. I do not care for Stephen King, but I would never join a Stephen King forum to tell them that they have bad taste in literature. Equating his creative output with a lazy blogger must be meant as an insult. Maybe it sounds better in Danish, but I somehow doubt it.
 
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caraculo

To think the poor soul will never know the pleasures of Ham on Rye, South of No North, The Last Night of the Earth Poems, Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame, etc. Tragic really. Back to Disney with you, caraculo.

I said I've been reading his works for several weeks , but I've only mentioned Factotum and Tales of Madness. What makes you think I havent read all the above mentioned works?

I read Ham on Rye, that's when my initial gut feeling was confirmed. Okay, now I know that he had acne , was very shy when he was a teenager and a few anecdotes about masturbation and bowel movements, but what about historic events or social descriptions? We are talking about a very interesting timeframe in the USA: the Great Depression, Pearl Harbour, etc. NOTHING about it. Me.Me.Me.Me. My stuff, my anxieties, my booze. It could just take a book, perhaps two to send the message, so it's actually admirable he managed to stretch it for several decades over and over.

XXth century online blogger, mark my words.
 

cirerita

Founding member
Well, Factotum takes place in the early 40s and WW2 is mentioned only once in passing. Perhaps it was deliberate?
 
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caraculo

Perhaps, Cirerita. Perhaps the guy was so focused on his alcoholism and sexual perversions that he tryied hard to keep real-world insignificant events out of his life. I remember the reference because it came as a gratiying surprise "during the war jobs were easy to find in America, for other people, that is". (well, it was more or less something in those lines)

Sounded a bit like the Twilight Zone.

Anyway, I know I shouldnt be here talking in this way, it's a bit of a trollish attitude like some guys mentioned above, so I better to leave for good now.

Farewell.
 
The things young readers fail to see...

with MJP's permission to touch on caraculo's concern's or objections regarding Bukowski's what appears as ' lack of concern for the World event' etc...

Depressed since I was kid, he's the first writer who touched on subject (without saying it exactly) ....' hey, life is miserable regardless if you are a dishwasher or a nuclear physicist.' Do you think he drank because he liked the taste...? he drank to fill 'the hole.' Ad the fact that we are also dictated by the hormones it doesn't help so what's called humanity is as thick as our shirt we are wearing.

looking for tragedy..? don't look very far or live long enough, it will find you.

Regards!
 
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