5 for Friday

by Patrick on May 29, 2009

I’m kind of bored this afternoon, and you know who benefits from that?  You do, good reader, you do.  Today, I thought I’d try something new.  5 for Friday is a list of 5 books/movies/albums, etc. about a certain topic.  Today, I thought I’d use Mark Sarvas’s excellent post about “Loser’s in fiction” at Bookforum.  I won’t list any of the books he did, so do click over to his post.  I also won’t list Mark’s novel Harry, Revised, though I’ve mentioned it here before.  Did you know it’s out in paperback?  Well, you do now.

  1. In the Drink, by Kate Christensen.  Christensen’s debut novel puts a feminine twist on what’s often a decidedly male genre.  Claudia Steiner has the job from hell as an assistant to an unstable and terrifying society matron.  In addition to this, she lives in a roach-infested walk-up apartment, for which she owes several months rent.  Oh, and she’s in love with her best friend, too.  So, you know, good times.
  2. A Fan’s Notes, by Frederick Exley.  Exley’s protagonist is an alcoholic womanizer who spends a fair amount of time in insane asylums.  He’s also a rabid New York Giants fan.  If that doesn’t scream loser, I don’t know what does.
  3. Withnail & I, written and directed by Bruce Robinson.  We can debate whether this is exactly a work of loser fiction.  It’s certainly part of the grand tradition of “weekend in the country” narratives, of which I’m also a fan.  But really, let’s look at this.  Withnail and our loyal nameless narrator live in a crumbling squat in London, where they are so broke that Withnail, in a moment of foolishness, drinks lighter fluid.
  4. FML.  Everybody already knows about this site, but with posts like this, I think it’s appropriate for this list:  “Today, my most difficult task at work was three hole punching a 500 page document so somebody could put it in a binder on their shelf and not read it. I have a $150,000 education. FML.”
  5. Kicking & Screaming.  No, not the Will Farrell movie, though I’m sure that’s great, too.  This one was the debut film for Noah Baumbach, and it’s hilarious.  A bunch of guys graduate from an elite college…and then never leave.  Instead they hang around and try to fit into their old college lives.  I don’t say this often, but if you’ve never seen this movie, I pity you.

Have a great weekend, everybody!  Next week, I’ll be posting a new podcast, as well as other assorted awesomeness.