Imagine a Kurt Vonnegut novel, but with no purpose and no plot Gross just for the sake of being gross Stupid just for the sake of being stupid And full of juvenile sexual references just for the sake of showing off Forget it, man. I haven t laughed this gleefully at a book since I read Gravity s Rainbow I have a weakness for zaniness, admittedly Horse Badorties is one of the most singularly unique and memorable characters in literature, reminiscent of later free spirited slackers like The Dude and Kramer, but with his own particular brand of lunacy If he were a real person, the TV show Hoarders could devote an entire season to him, if not give him his own spin off His overriding obsession is finding 15 year old girls to comprise his Love Chorus, and bringing medieval church music set to the pitch of Japanese handheld, battery powered electric fans, no less to the masses via a nationally televised concert, but his ADD tendencies and perpetually stoned headspace get in the way although surprisingly not that much So, in other words, it s a pretty weird book, but funny, very funny And I ll never look at the word dorky the same way again. The Fan Man Is A Comic Novel Published In By The American Writer William Kotzwinkle It S Told In The St Person By The Narrator, Horse Badorties, A Down At The Heels Hippie Living A Life Of Drug Fueled Befuddlement In New York City C The Book Is Written In A Colorful, Vernacular Hippie Speak Tells The Story Of The Main Character S Hapless Attempts To Put Together A Benefit Concert Featuring His Own Hand Picked Choir Of Year Old Girls Horse Is A Somewhat Tragic, Tho Historically Humorous, Character With Echoes Of Other Famous Characters In Popular Culture Such As Reverend Jim Ignatowski Of Taxi Fame In His Inability To Follow Anything Thru To Completion He Displays Symptoms Of Attention Deficit Disorder Tho This Could Equally Be Drug Induced His Defining Characteristic Is His Joy In Renting Or Commandeering Apartments Which He Fills With Street Scavenged Junk Articles Until Full To Bursting He Moves On To His Next Pad The Name Fan Man Is A Reference To Another Of His Traits The Collecting Of Fans Of All Shapes Sizes This is a vicious satire of narcissism of the hippie philosophy of peace and love Horse Baderite lives as a serial squatter in New York s Lower East Side, hoarding cast off junk, and bumbling through life on the bounties that comes his way from entertaining others with his groovy banter His obsessive quests propel him toward the door each morning, but there is so much junk in his way and so many mental diversions that intervene that he often gets so tired he has to take a nap before he can get down to business The daily goals typically include finding dope and teen aged nookie, but sometimes these targets call for an ambitious scheme to make them likely to happen His dream is to engage homeless teen girls to learn music from him and put on a free choral concert, in the process impressing them with his genius and paving the way to his bed This makes for an interesting allegory for civilization as a thin veneer over our hunter gatherer roots Unfortunately, the unwinding of the tale gets tiresome, and I longed to be free of the claustrophobia of being trapped in his twisted mind.The title refers to those little battery powered fans that seem to be the epitome of a tech solution to the misery that ails us all His conception is to collect enough of them to use them as an instrumental chorus in the planned concert As he goes about his quest, and props get added to his collection to the point that he can barely travel around To get people and props to the planned concert, he gets it in his head to acquire a used bus from a junkyard, paying with a hot check Before he gets out of the junkyard, he can t resist filling it up with other useless stuff He doesn t even make it a block before the vehicle s brakes fail and he blithely abandons the wreck that ensues All in this book are like sandcastles that mankind creates before the next tide erases them.This tale fits with a long tradition of literature where an aimless, anarchistic approach to life ends up calling for a creative career that gathers ever epicycles of effort From Don Quixote and Candide to the anti heroes of Joyce Cary s Horse s Mouth , John Kennedy Toole s Confederacy of Dunces , and Jim Harrison s Brown Dog , the path to accomplish something in life is paved with misplaced or aimless intentions, and the line between blind selfishness and meaningful purpose in an absurd world gets blurred in many ways. This is an account the Crumbling Autumn that followed the Summer of Love Told from the perspective of a smarmy , East Village loser Horse Badarties , largely in a stream of consciousness format, Kotzwinkle succeeds in sending the hippies off into the sunset Is it funny Hell, yeah It makes one wonder, though, where have all the potheads gone This book was a real surprise I was ready put it down after reading the first pages thinking that it was one of the stupidest things I had ever read But as I continued on starting to enjoy Horse Badorties inner monolog with every sentence ending with man , I soon realized that this was a masterpiece Definetly one of the best books I have ever read This book is gross Sexist Fucked up.I also loved it It s absurd, sublimely stupid, strangely buoyant. This was the edition we had around the house, the one I fell in love with because it had filthy illustrations to accompany the prose The most recent edition excises the sketches, replacing all with a cover that says nothing about the book, featuring a person with some existential conflict happening If you ve read the book and what a fucking book you ll see Horse Badorties isn t prone to that sort of thing. Every epoch needs its literary memorial And The Fan Man is an ideal memorial to the fabulously far out epoch of psychedelia.I just woke up, man Horse Badorties just woke up and is crawling around in the sea of abominated filthiness, man, which he calls home Walking through the rooms of my pad, man, through broken glass and piles of filthy clothes from which I shall select my wardrobe for the day The Fan Man isn t just a book it is a highly hallucinatory psychedelic trip.Open satchel take out special Montgomery Ward mail order glass enclosed water filled wire screened rubber hosed lung preserving mother fucking hookah And out of my moisture proof herbalist s pouch I am removing a generous pinch of Mexican papaya leaf, man, to get my enzymes flowing, sprinkling the leaves into the bowl of the hookah.Just tune yourself to the vibes of the world The ear hears, the heart knows, the voice sings out You should be in harmony with the universe and never mind how weird you may appear to the others dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky dorky
William Kotzwinkle is a two time recipient of the National Magazine Award for Fiction, a winner of the World Fantasy Award, the Prix Litteraire des Bouquinistes des Quais de Paris, the PETA Award for Children s Books, and a Book Critics Circle award nominee His work has been translated into dozens of languages.
- 191 pages
- The Fan Man
- William Kotzwinkle
- 11 May 2018 William Kotzwinkle