- Fizzy Thoughts: Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs

Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs
Chuck Klosterman
August 2003
256 pages

Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs is the shit. And I have to say that, otherwise Raych won't be my friend no more.

Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs is a collection of essays on thought-provoking topics, such as Saved by the Bell, The Real World, internet porn, and tribute bands. Okay, maybe not so thought-provoking. But if you're of a certain age (say late 30's to early 40's), most of Klosterman's topics will be incredibly familiar and entertaining. However, you damn well better have a sense of humor and a high tolerance for bad words. Case in point:
"Fake love is a very powerful thing. That girl who adored John Cusack once had the opportunity to spend a weekend with me in New York at the Waldorf-Astoria, but she elected to fly to Portland instead to see the first U.S. appearance by Coldplay, a British pop group whose success derives from their ability to write melodramatic alt-rock songs about fake love. It does not matter that Coldplay is absolutely the shittiest fucking band I've ever heard in my entire fucking life, or that they sound like a mediocre photocopy of Travis (who sound like a mediocre photocopy of Radiohead), or that their greatest fucking artistic achievement is a video where their blandly attractive frontman walks on a beach on a cloudy fucking afternoon. None of that matters. What matters is that Coldplay manufactures fake love as frenetically as the Ford fucking Motor Company manufactures Mustangs and that's all this woman heard. "For you I bleed myself dry," sang their blockhead vocalist, brilliantly informing us that stars in the sky are, in fact, yellow. How am I going to compete with that shit? That sleepy-eyed bozo isn't even making sense. He's just pouring fabricated emotion over four gloomy guitar chords, and it ends up sounding like love. And what does that mean? It means she flies to fucking Portland to hear two hours of amateurish U.K. hyperslop, and I sleep alone in a $270 hotel in Manhattan, and I hope Coldplay gets fucking dropped by fucking EMI and ends up like the Stone fucking Roses, who were actually a better fucking band, all things considered."
So if you're still with me after all those fucks (and I can't wait to see what this post does to my Typealyzer rating, and all those other blog rating thingies, not to mention my keyword search statistics), you'll have figured out that this book isn't for everyone. But if you love references to popular culture (especially from the '80s and '90s) and snarky comments and a twisted mind, then really, you should read this.

Here's another example of why I love Klosterman. There is a brilliant short essay on why math is a lie (page 148 if you want to skip to the good stuff). If, like me, you loathed statistics, then this is pure genius:

"When push comes to shove - when you truly get down to the core essence of existence - there is only one mathematical possibility: Everything is 50-50. Either something will happen, or something will not."

and later...

"Math is not religion. Math is the anti-religion, because it splinters the gravity of life's only imperative equation: Either something is true, or it isn't. Do or do not; there is no try."

I'm tellin' ya, good stuff, Maynard.

8 comment(s):

bermudaonion said...

My son actually had to read this for a Freshman English class, and he brought it home. I started it, and enjoyed it, but after a while, the essays all seemed the same.

chartroose said...

I want to write something similar, but I'm afraid it would suck. This book sounds like a fun quick read, but I'm NOT putting it on my TBR. I am buried in books at the moment.

Rebecca @ The Book Lady's Blog said...

Great review! I read this shortly before I started blogging and just never felt like I could do it justice in a review. I *heart* Chuck Klosterman. I want him to write about Dawson's Creek.

raych said...

YES! Awesome. I knew you would love it. Still friends.

Steph said...

a substitute teacher I had in high school always had this book with him and he always talked about it. I'm surprised I still haven't read it.
The math comments, those make me want to read this SO BAD.
Math sucks hardcore.
And the swearing doesn't bother me in the least, probably because I am a monster of cursing myself. I'm crass. hehe.

Dar said...

Ok, this does sound intriguing. The swearing doesn't bother me at all either. I unfortunately have potty mouth more often than not. Trying to curb it but not always successful-lol. Thanks for the review-going to check it out.

Joanne said...

I have flipped through this one and another one he wrote (can't remember the title) about heavy metal - it has a cow on the cover wearing KISS makeup. Both were fun, I think it's time I gave them both a full read.

J.S. Peyton said...

I've never read this (although I've thought about it off and on for like two years now), but if all his essays are anything like the things you've quoted above, I think I agree: Klosterman is the shit. Now, I guess I need to actually go buy the damn thing. God, my TBR list is ridiculous.

Any plans to read his latest, "Fargo Rock City?"

In a real sense, people who have read good literature have lived more than people who cannot or will not read. It is not true that we have only one life to live; if we can read, we can live as many more lives and as many kinds of lives as we wish. ~S.I. Hayakawa

The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.
~St. Augustine

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.
~Mark Twain

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