Men are weird.
Now, basing blanket statements like that on the example of Russell Brand and his dad is probably not a wise decision. But there's no denying it's a thought that wanders through my mind as I read books like Brand's autobiography My Booky Wook.
As stated yesterday, I found this book to be a surprisingly rich reading experience. There's a few reasons for that. First, I love all things Brit, and that includes Russell. Secondly, he's funny; I even loved his captions. For one of his school pictures, he wrote "Dagenham Park, elfin, porcine, oddly Puerto Rican; this look has it all. I loved that shirt." If you could see the picture, the "oddly Puerto Rican" bit of that would just make you laugh. It's perfect. I also enjoyed his dedication: "For my mum, the most important woman in my life, this book is dedicated to you. Now for God's sake don't read it."
Secondly, the book, although it is emphatically ALL about Russell, provided a surprising degree of helpful information. Take heroin, for instance. I've read Irvine Welsh's Trainspotting several times and can't say I ever really understood the appeal of heroin. But Brand actually describes it in a way that puts it in context, especially in relation to other drugs:
"Heroin delivered. LSD kind of does a bit, especially when all the things that are familiar to you peel away and you suddenly realize the fragility of how you normally see the world. Marijuana kind of doesn't really, although it's a laugh for a while (I say that having smoked it constantly for a decade). Alcohol makes you sick and gives you a headache. Crack is like inhaling plastic, but so brief and flimsy and brittle as a high. Normal cocaine just makes you nervous, amphetamines are even worse and ecstasy never really agreed with me. But heroin gets the job done.
What it mainly does is take you right out of reality, and plant you somehwere more manageable. In short, it contextualizes everything else as meaningless." (p. 214.)
Okay, I start to get why that is a dangerous, dangerous drug. I've lost the exact page where he also references his love for living in the present, and that provided some insight as well, particularly for why I don't believe I have a particularly addictive personality (except where Pop-Tarts are concerned). I'm never aware of when the present is going on, actually. I fret about the future and I spend a lot of time looking back with nostalgia, but I'm not terribly good at being in the present. If you're the sort of person who is, I can see where it would be a lot easier to become interested in a whole lot of "feels good in the present" things. I found that very interesting. Hmm, gaining insight through a pop celeb autobiography. I don't think that was supposed to be part of the process.
So, I loved My Booky Wook. I loved it and was as surprised by it as much as I loved and was surprised by Jenna Jameson's autobiography, How To Make Love Like a Porn Star: A Cautionary Tale (make note of that subtitle; it really was). And, as I told Mr. CR, Russell is my very favorite former drug- and sex-addict.* He seems to be funny even without the addictions so I hope he can keep it up.
*I like his comedy too, but not as much as I love Dylan Moran's. And yes, I know, Moran is Irish, not British. He's my favorite import from "across the sea."