A Common Pornography: A Memoir by Kevin Sampsell

By Kevin Sampsell

“For good looks, honesty, sheer weirdness, and a haunting evocation of position, Kevin Sampsell is my favourite Oregon author. Ken Kesey, Chuck Palahniuk—make a few room at the shelf.”—Sean Wilsey, writer of Oh the consideration of it All

Kevin Sampsell’s A universal Pornography is a memoir, informed in vignettes, that captures the background of 1 dysfunctional American kin. An extension of a 2003 “memory experiment” of a similar identify, A universal Pornography weaves reminiscences of small-town early life with darker threads from his family’s tale, together with incest, insanity, betrayal, and demise. a typical contributor to Dave Egger’s The Believer and McSweeney’s, Sampsell has written “the form of publication the place you must thank the writer for assisting you're feeling much less by myself with being alive” (Jonathan Ames, writer of Wake Up, Sir! and The Double existence is two times as Good).

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That’s Dad and me and Kenny, taken at the first Thanksgiving I had in LA. Moving out to LA meant that my family and I were going to be in close proximity to my oldest brother Kenny. My memories of Kenny are perhaps the most difficult part of writing this book. My recollection of him just doesn’t line up with those of family. What follows is my version of my relationship with him, and I’ve decided to get it out in the open for the first time. He was really the dominant male figure of my formative years, for reasons that started out good and eventually turned very bad.

Even though I didn’t have a name for this ritual, I knew it was wrong, because I would never throw away the garbage from my private feast in the kitchen wastebasket, or even our garbage can in the alley. I knew a savvy CIA operative like my mother would have nailed me. So I actually gathered the hollow Pringles can and the empty Jiffy boxes, put them in a bag, walked down the alley, lifted the metal lid of the Schumachers’ garbage can, and placed it in there. I owe the Schumachers an apology. If Mrs.

It all seemed so fantastic. Part of me really did have a bit of idol worship with him. And when I was a snotty little kid who annoyed the family by singing and dancing around in the house every night, he was the encouraging one. ” A comment like that, as simple as it sounds, can really fuel the optimism of a starstruck kid. Kenny’s behavior at other times, though, offered up contradictions. He had a terrible work ethic, for instance, which really burned itself into my brain as something very negative.

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