Acid Heroes

July 6, 2011

What Do You Think of ME ME ME ME !!

Filed under: Random Archives — Ace Backwords @ 4:26 am
Tags: , , , ,

(Originally published February 5, 2007)

I recently caused a minor stir on the Comics Journal Message Board when I made an off-handed remark: “The only contemporary artists that I consider in my class are R. Crumb and Charles Bukowski. Of course, the world doesn’t share this high opinion of myself.  But then, I don’t think much of this world, either. So we’re even.”

Which inspired many posters to respond by pointing out that I’m actually a piece of shit, and how dare I speak my name in the same breath as these Great Men, and etc. Which hurt my tender feelings. But, of course, the reaction was understandable because, face it, its obnoxious to gas off the way I did. So what the hell.

But it made me wonder: Does it really matter what anybody thinks of you? Or even what you think of yourself, for that matter?

In fact, I’ve been called a “genius” before. I’ve also been called just about the lowest things you can call a human being who walks on 2 legs on God’s green earth. And just about everything in between. It’s quite a spectrum of opinion. (The only one that really hurts is when they call me a “bore”  — and I’ve been called that plenty, too.)

Right after Kerouac published On the Road, the reviewers practically ripped him apart. They not only denigrated his literary talents, but they went on to point out his utter worthlessness as a human being and etc. And yet, 50 years later, people are still reading and enjoying On the Road (whereas, I suspect most of his critics are no longer as widely enjoyed).

I’m a big sports fan. And, of course, the audience always has the right to boo or cheer or hiss or yawn to their heart’s content (that’s a big part of the fun). But it always annoys me to hear some slob sitting in front of his television set criticizing these world class athletes. The latest one they’ve been heaping abuse on is (the unfortunately named) Rex Grossman, the quarterback of the Chicago Bears, the losing quarterback in yesterday’s Super Bowl. Oh the abuse they’ve been showering on this guy. WHAT A FUCK-UP he is, what a TOTAL LOSER, we’ve GOT TO GET RID OF THIS BUM, and etc. This guy Rex Grossman happens to be a world-class athlete, just a great, great, magnificent athlete. You don’t get to the Super Bowl if you’re not. And just once, I’d like to see some of his “critics” spend 20 weeks getting hit on the head by 300-pound monsters, and then see how accurately THEY throw the ball.

I’m always fascinated by how other people see me. Mostly because I have no core of self-esteem, and really don’t know WHO I am (so maybe some of these other people can give me some clues).

The other night, I was sitting on the sidewalk smoking a cigarette with some other street people, when this car pulled up to the curb  — this group of Christian do-gooders  — and gave me a free bag lunch, and then pulled away. Just as I was starting to put the bag lunch in my backpack, a cop car pulls up. The cop walks over and gives me the flashlight treatment:  “I just wanted to see what you were putting in your pack.” I guess it looked suspicious, me putting it in my pack just as the cop pulled up. “You got me, officer,” I said as I opened up my pack. “A peanut butter & jelly sandwhich.”

But the point was:  After several decades of being a contributing member of the community, this is probably what most people think of me: As either a “bum” or a “criminal.”

Last month, I was desperate to make some money. So I took some of my own books  — books with my own work in it that the publishers had sent me as contributer copies — down to the local Used Book Store to see if I could sell them for cash. I figured the buyer at the book store would be highly impressed. “Wow, a Published Author” and all that crap. But instead, she looked at me sternly and said: “These books look BRAND NEW. Where did you GET these books?!” She thought I was a shop-lifter who had stolen them.

But its always like that. Whenever I start to care what people think of me, whenever I put my ego out there, I’m setting myself up to get my bubble burst.

Often, I question my motives in all this. Like, why am I even writing this stupid blog in the first place, putting myself out there in front of the public eye to be ridiculed and/or adored? I concluded my motivation is pretty much split down the middle: Half of it is a compulsion towards self-expression (or “gassing off” if you’re less favorably disposed).  And the other half is a need for attention. Because face it, one of the most primal urges of a baby is a cry for attention. And sometimes it works (“AHH!  Tittie!”). And other times it don’t (a slap in the face and “SHUTTUP you brat!”).

And, like most people who attempt to go The Great Man route, I probably put myself before the public as a way of trying to compensate for my low self-esteem and feelings of worthlessness by winning the approval of the audience.

And now that I’ve done that with this magnificent blog, I finally realize that, yes, I truly am great after all.

Or maybe not.


1 Comment »

  1. Loved this Ace. Hope you are doing ok. Um as far as that cop and the bookstore worker, their treatment. Um I was in a Greyhound bus terminal the other day and got stopped by security guard for using the bathroom. I looked suspicious too, long beard and hair. Shit never changes. Keep writing pleeze. I almost always relate lol.

    Comment by John Delmos — July 26, 2011 @ 3:01 pm | Reply

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