Wednesday, February 25, 2009

"Permanent Midnight" by Jerry Stahl

My brother gave me this book for my birthday (along with a shea butter and lanolin shampoo and cream rinse; don't worry, they're for Louie). "Permanent Midnight" is a memoir of a one-time TV writer's drug addiction. Shooting heroin and writing for the family-friendly "Alf" and the baby boomer hijinks of "Moonlighting"--good stuff. Since the memoir he's published several novels. It's interesting to read a memoir from a writer whose creative work you aren't familiar with (except as manifest in the quirks of planet Melmac).

If I were to guess about a book like Fatty Arbuckle, based on "Permanent Midnight," it probably has pervasive drugs, some pornography, profound self-doubt, absent parents, the desire to do right but the overbearing compulsion towards self-destruction, and, maybe, a flash of light at the tunnel's end. Sounds good to me.

3 comments:

Mark Panik said...

I'm glad you liked it. I think the moral of the story is - If you want to succeed, do enough heroin to kill an elephant.

Michelle Panik said...

Do enough heroin to kill an elephant--wasn't that part of the Scout motto?

Jerry Stahl said...

Glad you enjoyed Permanent Midnight. No elephants were harmed in the making of my book - or, for that matter, the movie. Sincerely, Jerry Stahl