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Shirley Jackson, Francine Prose
No Logo: No Space, No Choice, No Jobs
Naomi Klein
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"I want to perform an unnatural act."

- Lenny Bruce

"I get a kick out of being an outsider constantly. It allows me to be creative. I don't like anything in the mainstream and they don't like me."

- Bill Hicks

"I don’t like ass kissers, flag wavers or team players. I like people who buck the system. Individualists. I often warn people: “Somewhere along the way, someone is going to tell you, ‘There is no “I” in team.’ What you should tell them is, ‘Maybe not. But there is an “I” in independence, individuality and integrity.’” Avoid teams at all cost. Keep your circle small. Never join a group that has a name. If they say, “We’re the So-and-Sos,” take a walk. And if, somehow, you must join, if it’s unavoidable, such as a union or a trade association, go ahead and join. But don’t participate; it will be your death. And if they tell you you’re not a team player, congratulate them on being observant."

-George Carlin

"The more I see, the less I know for sure."

- John Lennon

Attempting Normal - Marc Maron I've never liked fans who find themselves superior to others when they've liked someone or something before it/he/she/they became popular. Some people are lucky enough to discover a talent before everyone else does and feel a kinship to that person when they rise to fame. For me, Marc Maron is one of those talents. I became a huge alternative stand up comedy fan in the early nineties and Maron was one of those guys I told people about. I still know a lot of his old routines. Maron's enjoying success now because of his WTF podcast and his show on IFC. Those who weren't aware of him are getting schooled on his awesomeness. Here's the thing - comedians writing books isn't anything new. Also, if you know anything about Maron, you know he's a caustic, bitter guy who won't namedrop people just to impress readers. "Attempting Normal" is mostly a look into Maron's two failed marriages, his drug problems, and his inability to attain the fame and recognition of his peers.Maron writes with intelligence and resignation about past mistakes in a way that can be poetic at times. He talks about having a dead-end segment on a local show while realizing that his marriage was in trouble:"It was a 'talk show on the street' segment. It was cute but like being dead but accepting it. I was married to a woman who had just added pre-natal vitamins to our kitchen vitamin lineup. I was thinking, 'That can't happen.'"I can certainly sympathize with Maron's self-destructive nature and I think that's what attracted me to him in the first place. As he says, "...when things are going well there is a voice in my head saying, 'You're going to fuck it up. You're going to fuck it up"...I just wish that voice were louder than the voice screaming, 'Let's fuck it up!'"Still, Maron has found acceptance: "I'm not a household name, I'm not a huge comic, I have not made millions of dollars, but I am okay and I make a living. I'm good with that. Finally."Some people never find that peace. I'm glad Maron did.