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Things Are Meaning Less

by: Al Burian

December 21st, 2009 · post by Lucas · Make a comment


Bottom line. This is great. It really connected with me on a personal level (which is why i enjoyed it so much!) but the meandering thoughts and subtle wit are good enough that anyone could pick it up and get something out of it. Trying to nail it to a genre, I guess it would be a compilation of a personal zine. Trying to go a bit deeper than that, it really is someone finding a way to pretty much publish their diary – without making you feel like you’ve crept in their room and found it under their bed. For me, the illustration just makes it easier to digest. Rather than steal your attention away from the writing, it lulls you into thinking that you’re stood next this guy (sometimes while he’s making a sandwich – sometimes when he’s strolling around town) as he tries (and often admittedly fails!) to orientate the random deconstructions of his life into a succinct point.

The book as a whole doesn’t have a continuous narrative and is more like a selection of diary entries that try and give a rounded representation of random points of his life. The themes it tends to deal with are relationships and alienation, albeit in various different guises. The first chapter works well as explanation to the overall tone of the book and as to why contents of the book are the way they are. Summed up most poignantly in the admition in which he writes that “despite my professed atheism, I’m deeply superstitious at heart. So its only normal that my next step after failing to find logical patterns would be to ascribe symbolic meanings to the blinking of lights”. I wish I couldn’t relate to this as much as i do but damn…i do. One of the main things i found interesting about this book (and stylistically similar more personal literature) is trying to figure out a point of departure for the truth. Just how far does the honesty go? It’s not a criticism of the book really, more a general musing I had when thinking about how willing I would be to let people into MY head so easily. (….I say as I’m writing about my thoughts on someone elses thoughts….whoops).

I think that’s why i liked this so much. Connecting with someone else, even if it’s vicariously through a drawing and a thought bubble, always sparks something within me. Whether it’s laughter, sympathy or empathy. I think I experienced all three of those whilst reading this so that’s why i would definitely recommended it. bye bye!

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