Home Land: A Novel
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What if somebody finally wrote to his high school alumni bulletin and told...the truth! Here is an update from hell, and the most brilliant work to date, by the novelist whom Jeffrey Eugenides calls "original, devious, and very funny" and of whose first novel Chuck Palahniuk wrote, "I laughed out loud---and I never laugh out loud."
The Eastern Valley High School Alumni newsletter, Catamount Notes, is bursting with tales of success: former students include a bankable politician and a famous baseball star, not to mention a major-label recording artist. Then there is the appalling, yet utterly lovable, Lewis Miner, class of '89---a.k.a Teabag---who did not pan out. This is his confession in all its bitter, lovelorn glory.
was she to call my father a letch? A man sidles up to claim his Darwinian due and if he doesn’t fit the demo he’s an outcast, a pervert, a slimeball at best. Besides, she’d never caught Daddy Miner caressing her daughter’s ass near the basement boiler. She hadn’t earned the right to call him a letch. Along these scientific lines I worked through my more virulent feelings about Glave Wilkerson, too. Pretentious mediocrity must have a place in this world, or why would Nature allow for it? Each of
saber-toothed tigers, or even pustular people-snatchers roving the outer dark, those in the audience had the opposite in mind: Please, please, pantheon of local animistic deities, please don’t let me be anywhere near this story. But it’s all very different now. It must be the video games. MY TROUBLE, Catamounts, is that I am very much in this, at least as far as Hollis Wofford is concerned. Last night, back from In Your Cups and my boozy, dreamy walk beneath the lights of the county road,
all cried out. I’ve been crying for months.” “Fuck you.” “You tried that already.” I could hardly breathe for the tears, the snot. I tried to flush the burn from my eyes, glanced up at Gwendolyn, the delicate swoop of her jaw, her plump lips, her nose, her beautiful nose, Hazel’s nose, really, my mother’s nose, more flared. I’d noticed the resemblance before, of course, but in the throes of new love you drive such thoughts from your mind. Probably now I’d convince myself I’d only ever loved
was a dry summer. Driest on record.” “It rained here,” I said. “Nonetheless,” said Victor, appeared proud he’d used the word, unsure how to follow up. “Nonetheless, we have statistics to prove this was the driest summer on record. It’s no surprise. What with the economy. And the terrorist networks.” “Not to mention the television networks,” I said. “And that guy in the White House, what’s his name?” “The president!” somebody called from the end of the bar. Chip Gallagher had the makings of a
later.” “Still got that sunburst?” I said. “The Les Paul?” “Do I know you?” “No, I just work here.” “Oh, cool.” “You guys going to play ‘Nothing Man’ tonight?” “Our pop song? Yeah, I guess we have to. For the chicks.” “They’re all pop songs, you idiot,” I said, whipped past him into the Moonbeam. “Envy’s a sin!” Glave called after me. I FOUND DADDY MINER in the banquet hall, stooped down near the buffet table, testing the base of a soup tureen. “Looks great in here,” I said. It’s