Generation X by Douglas Coupland

Mike’s review

I guess I must be starting a new phase of life if I’m reading this. That’s usually how it goes. Don’t want to move on. Have to. Read Generation X, come out alive. I don’t want to let go. The pain is worth the good. I don’t understand why anyone lets go of anything. Always hold on to what you have. You can’t have more, just less. Time erodes. People can only fall apart. I love you.

“Could the situation be that we no longer believe [in hell]? Or maybe we were all promised heaven in our lifetimes, and what we ended up with can’t help but suffer in comparison.”

Crazy how something different catches me each time I read this.

“When you see such photos, you can’t help but wonder at just how sweet and sad and innocent all moments of life are rendered by the tripping of a camera’s shutter, for at that point the future is still unknown and has yet to hurt us.” I’ll probably look at old photos and feel this wonder later.

There are genuine editorial concerns here, but none of it matters because what is good is so fucking good. (Concern example: “Ever notice how hard it is to talk after you’ve eaten lunch outside on a super-hot day,” implying lunch is over appears before, “[Dag’s story] runs in my head while the three of us eat lunch,” in the same paragraph even.

“‘Know what the fastest way to get rid of dogs that beg at the dinner table is?’ I ask to a mumbled response. ‘Give them a piece of carrot or an olive instead of meat, and give it to them with an earnest face. They’ll look at you like you’re mad [I think that’s what it says, but I’m having g a hard time reading my writing] and they’ll be gone in seconds.'” My dog’s favorite food is carrots.

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