Friday, September 06, 2019

Quote of the Week: Something to Say

For a while I didn't have anything more to say. I was working in a comic-book store on Melrose Avenue. This is the main drag of Pop Angeles; it used to be art galleries and thrift shops, and then about a decade ago punk seized control of its low-rent aspects. Now there are retro diners and record stores and gelato shops and trendy eateries and this comic-book store where I worked. Punks and New Hollywood moguls and alleged bohemians and tourists and counterculture newspaper editors from Oregon who can't wait to move to New York because Los Angeles isn't hip enough for them all collide on Melrose Avenue; a Jewish retirement home sits in the middle of it; Holocaust victims on the patio watch the passing parade. I worked in the comic-book store about eight months. I attended to the needs of adolescent boys who required this issue or that of Punisher or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I also had to put up with the grownups, young men in suits and ties who would burst in red-faced and hot under the collar about the ways Superman was stripped of certain facets of his X-ray vision in the most recent adventure. The most appealing thing about the job was the way everyone thought it was beneath me. Even the other people who worked in the store thought it was beneath me, though not necessarily beneath them. This was just something I had to overcome, it just took time to persuade people that it wasn't beneath me at all, that I was in fact perfectly suited to such an occupation. By the end of the time I worked there they believed this. I completely convinced them. I left finally because there was something to say again, and so I wrote another book and now that's over and it's the beginning of another year.

 - Steve Erickson, Leap Year, pp.13-14

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