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I Don't Care About Your Band: What I Learned from Indie Rockers, Trust Funders, Pornographers, Felons, Faux-Se nsitive Hipsters, and Other Guys I've Dated [Format Kindle]

Julie Klausner

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Descriptions du produit


Hey! Remember the '90s?

The Clintons were in office, everybody was using AOL, Will Ferrell and Cheri Oteri did "The Cheerleaders" on SNL, and everybody thought Oasis was fantastic. In hindsight, we were all a bunch of potato–salad–eating jackasses. Sure, it was before 9/11, and optimism always looks like corn–shucking yokelry before planes hit buildings, but we were also marinating in the guava juices of our own naïveté, having collectively just hit our national stride of financial prosperity. And nothing lends itself more to navel–gazing than having a surplus of money and time on one's hands. Appropriately enough, it was in the mid–90s when I began my liberal arts college education.

I went to NYU's Gallatin School of Individualized Study, a school I'd chosen because of my crippling fear of places that are not New York City and Gallatin's decidedly laissez–faire policy about what you actually had to learn. My self–designed concentration was in "Cultural Criticism," which afforded me the freedom to take classes in filmmaking, postmodern literature, abnormal sexual behavior, social psychology, dramatic writing, performance studies, and arts journalism. Gallatin called itself "The School Without Walls," and you know what it also didn't really have? A lot of practical requirements for graduation. You had to take one math or science credit, and social science counted as a science. It was sort of like the A–School: Part Two, only at Gallatin, nobody cared about you. I spent three evenings and two afternoons a week in three–hour classes, discussing whether gender was a construct, and I had the rest of my week to spend browsing Wet Seal and looking for guys to fall in love with.

The other defining memory I have of the mid–1990s was that everybody seemed to be talking about dating all the goddamn time.

The Rules, that shrill creed designed to make women feel bad about their own desires, was published in 1995. The First Wives Club came out the year after. Then, in 1998, the Monica Lewinsky scandal broke, and Sex and the City debuted. I think 1997 is the only respite of the zeitgeist chatter concerning the ins and outs of romance, and I blame that on Princess Diana's death. Clearly, a nation's vaginas were sitting shiva on the behalf of the People's Princess.

At this time, I, too, was eager, to paraphrase Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption, playing (for a change) a wise old black man, to "get busy datin' or get busy dyin'." I bought into the Clintonian promise of a mouth for every dick, and I wanted in on the deal. The rest of the world seemed to buzz on the same frequency, and women everywhere in New York City seemed to crawl with dating desperation. Terminology that previously only lived between the covers of Cosmo now seemed to be inescapable: Get and keep a man! Commitment time! Pleasure zones! On the prowl!

I dressed the part, in animal prints and red lipstick. But I wasn't going for "cougar"—I wanted to do the B–movie, cateye– glasses, Bettie Page, fishnets, and Russ Meyer thing. You know, the look that people in the Pacific Northwest still think is really cutting–edge? But it didn't look cute on me. Instead, I looked like a woman with designs on men, and more Delta Burke than Annie Potts.

Predictably, my efforts were tempered by the fact that real life, thank God, is nothing like Cosmo magazine. Which is why nobody should wear makeup to the gym to meet men or learn how to perfect one's "Faux–O." I was like Carrie Bradshaw only in that I hung out downtown and wanted a boyfriend. My shoes were limited to a couple of comfortable options, I didn't drink, and you couldn't see my collarbone without an MRI. Also, the people I hung out with around that time were pretty un–fabulous.

There was Jodi, my roommate from New Jersey who was missing a set of knuckles, so her fingers could only go perpendicular. Candace, the only person I ever met to have actually grown up in the Orchard Beach section of the Bronx, who used to strip to Motley Crüe in Yonkers and blamed her small breasts on an eating disorder she developed during puberty. And Eve, a dumpster–diving punk–rocker wannabe whose identification of water as "wudder" screamed "Pennsylvania Mainline," but who wanted more than anything to live in a squat somewhere in 1982. Eve's whole life was scored by URGH! A Music War, but her bank account was padded with the wages of comfortable suburban parents. I was also friendly with a lot of gay girls who would never get sick of telling me how great Judith Butler's books are, and why it was important to see Boys Don't Cry more than once, "to catch the subtleties."

"I don't get it," said Lauryn, one of the aforementioned lesbians, after I made the mistake of asking her for advice about my sorry dating life. "How many times are you going to get screwed over by all those shitty guys before you move on?"

I just giggled in response, like she was fl irting with me—all gay people who share your gender want to have sex with you, you know—and thought, "Lauryn's so funny!" I knew sex with a girl was like the Master Cleanse: Maybe it changed other people's lives for the better, but it wasn't for me, and it sort of made my stomach hurt a little to think about diving into that particular collegiate cliché.

But Lauryn was right about the shitty guys. I dated them in college like it was my major.

MET all grades of awful men getting picked up in bars I got into with a fake Georgia driver's license. Under the guise of hailing from Savannah, I got to meet winners like Reginald Blankenship, a carrot–topped lanky Kentuckian who met me at Max Fish two hours before requesting oral sex with a mintfl avored condom, which is sort of like ordering a cheeseburger and drinking it through a straw. Reginald taught me two things: that I can't be intimate with a man with the same skin and hair coloring as me, because the minute a redheaded man lowers his drawers, I feel like I'm looking at myself with male genitalia; and also, that when you try to suck a guy off with a mint balloon on his penis, he will ask you to stop, and then he will tell you that he wants to take a bath.

I met a guy old enough to have known better than to dabble with a college freshman at the now–defunct Coney Island High on St. Mark's Place. We kissed until my hair caught fire from the candle on the bar, igniting instantly the helmet of White Rain hair spray I used to encase my ginger dome before a night on the town. After the bartender did me the favor of throwing a lager on my head, the dabbler and I had boring, missionary sex. I remember his apartment was on Park Avenue in the high 20s, and that he had photos of African children on his wall. I wore a garter belt and stockings under what I thought was a classy zebra–print skirt and V–neck top from Express, and I moaned appreciatively as he gently plowed my soft, eighteen–year–old body.

There was a boy at a hotel in Italy—a fellow American traveler—whom I met over breakfast during a summer abroad. I marveled at his chin–length Shirley Temple ringlets and tiny, round balls for the time it took for him to finish in one of Tuscany's finest lambskin condoms, only to run into him the next day on the steps of some beautiful ruin in Rome, where he told me he shouldn't meet up with me again, because he was in a relationship back at home. "Me too," I lied back, feeling so stupid about being dumped abroad that I forgot he was the one who transgressed. My wanting another night of what I thought was good sex with a cute guy who happened to have Bette Davis's hair from Whatever Happened to Baby Jane was still less embarrassing than a guy thinking that just once, on vacation, wasn't cheating.

I didn't even like any of these guys, but I wanted so badly for them to want me. When nobody called, I turned to the annals of self–help and dating books, ubiquitous as they were at the time. But I read them with an ingenious filter: I wouldn't listen to anybody.

"DON'T CALL Him and Rarely Return His Calls," advised Ellen Fein and Sherrie Schneider in Rule Number 5 of their dating book about not pursuing men in order to trick them into marrying you. I think the only book that made me as mad as The Rules was The Atkins Bible. I lasted on a low–carb diet for thirty seconds before losing my mind, and I didn't even try to follow any of "The Rules," even the ones that made sense, like "Don't Try to Change Him." Not going after what I wanted more than anything seemed counterintuitive to everything else I knew about the way things worked. If I wanted an internship, I'd pester higher and lower–ups at the office until I got it. If I wanted to get into a class, I'd show up at the Registrar at seven a.m., bounding through pedestrian traffic to calls of "Run, Forrest, Run!" from passersby in order to make it to the top of the queue on time. And when I had a crush on a boy, I would raze fields of wheat with a torch if I had to, in hopes of getting touch. I would call frequently and obsessively return his calls. I would ask him out. I would bring him gifts. Pay for meals. I would never end a date first, or without some sort of action. And as for Rule Number 3, "Don't Stare at Men or Talk Too Much"? Well, I was a gaping, chatting, rushing–into–sex monster, and the idea of seeming unavailable, when in fact ...

Revue de presse

"I wish that, like a big sister, I could have taken Julie Klausner aside and advised her against most of the dalliances in this book. On the other hand, her horrible dating experiences are your laugh-out-loud entertainment."
-Rachel Dratch, actress and comedienne (Saturday Night Live)

"Julie Klausner has the perfect comedic voice for a new generation of ladies-brave, self-deprecating, high-larious beyond and brand spanking new. It's one of those books that you take to bed with you, that keeps you up all night, and that makes you laugh so hard in public the next morning that strangers ask you what you're reading. And make me so glad I'm not dating."
-Jill Soloway, author of Tiny Ladies in Shiny Pants and executive producer of United States of Tara

"Julie Klausner is Helen Girly Brown: hard-working, yet lusty! Romantic and intelligent! But best of all: unapologetic about wanting to be in love. I Don't Care About Your Band has more wit and all of the tsuris of Carrie Bradshaw's Sex and the City, without the pithy bromides."
-Sarah Thyre, author of Dark at the Roots and actress on Strangers with Candy

"All those misplaced orgasms and disappointing hookups with deviants were well worth it. Julie Klausner's memoir is screamingly funny and wiser than a hooker with health insurance. Take it home for a ride!"
-Michael Musto, columnist for The Village Voice and author of La Dolce Musto

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 608 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 274 pages
  • Editeur : Gotham; Édition : Reprint (11 janvier 2010)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B0030CVQ08
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Non activé
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°140.755 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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322 internautes sur 359 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Water Seeks Its Own Level 7 mai 2010
Par Snark Shark - Publié sur
Julie Klausner dates a lot of losers. Which is weird, she tells us, because she is AWESOME.

Which begs the question: so why is she dating such losers?

Disclaimer: I don't know Klausner the person, probably never will. I'd very much like her to be awesome -- there should be more awesome people in the world.

But Julie-as-portrayed-in-a-book-written-by-Julie-Klausner did not impress me.

The book is a series of essays, loosely connected in that they all address Klausner's sexual life/romantic life/theories on men. I found some more interesting than others; usually where she left the personal and examined cultural icons like Kermit and Piggy or Jim and Pam (from The Office US) to see if she could suss out a relationship zeitgeist. The essays about specific hookups had a depressing sameness to them: Girl meets Guy. Girl deducts Guy is not on her level, but Girl is single, so why not. Girl has sex with Guy, hopes that this will improve the relationship. Eventually, a)Guy dumps Girl or b)Girl decides relationship is not improving, dumps Guy.

Klausner isn't dull, don't get me wrong, and sometimes she delivers killer black humor. But she is incredibly frustrating as a memoirist, because "I Don't Care About Your Band" reads like an extended version of that joke about the terrible food served in too-small portions. Although she tries to persuade us her escapades are rooted in romantic optimism and the belief that, some day, she'll meet someone who deserves her, she doesn't actually like any of these guys. With few exceptions, none of her hookups are all that captivating: they're not as funny as she is, not as mature, not as intelligent, not as attractive, not as generous in bed, not as thin, not as sane, not as sophisticated, not as talented. "So why didn't they like me?" she mourns, bewildered.

Klausner has a really interesting thesis (I did say she had moments, right?) that most guys want is a girl no one else knows is pretty. (See above: The Office US, Pam.) I think it's a fascinating idea, but I also think Klausner suffers the gender flip: she wants a guy no one else knows is a mensch, whom she can elevate from his squalid extended boyhood into a Real Adult Relationship. Either that, or she's setting up her ego to fail: she confesses to crushing on the disinterested, as if getting him interested will prove her self-worth. Once he's interested, though, the real test begins -- can she make him love her enough that he'll "grow into the man he knows I need to be with." Yes, that's a quote.

The style of the book is chatty and breezy, but the overall effect felt like getting cornered at a party by That Girl. You know the one, she'll get hammered and trot out her theory that she is actually a gay man! Trapped in a straight woman's body! Get it? Because she enjoys giving oral sex (and women don't) and is hilariously witty (which (white) women aren't). I picked this up because it came recommended by the writers at [...], and they should be ashamed of themselves. A liberal feminist website has no business promoting a book with such strong undercurrents of biphobia and bi-erasure ("a lot of bisexuality" in a girl means she's just straight and "horny," but even a "little bit of bisexuality" in a guy means he's actually gay), transphobia (a woman who doesn't have ex-friends she hates must be "a convincing tranny," because she's not actually a woman, haha get it?), and misogyny.

Yeah, you heard me.

Klausner talks a good talk. She encourages women to do their own thing, be their own ego-boosters, and entertain the idea that what they find attractive in romantic partners is what they really want for themselves, in their own lives. All good stuff. But the actual women populating her book are a mix of mean girls, backstabbers, frumpy friends, boring lesbians (they advise her to dump guys she dislikes -- haha, what do they know about dating men, right ladies?), and the faceless "mousy" girls she accuses guys of defaulting to in the face of her intimidating awesome. She encourages her readers to go out and get a gay man as a best friend ASAP, as they are the only true BFF material. (She confides, in a masterful stroke of pigeonholing men on the basis of sexuality, that she can judge a woman's level of taste and sophistication on her number of gay male friends please observe AS MY JAW DROPS.) Friendships with women are undermined by innate competitiveness and jealousy, according to her, and other women are never truly happy about your personal or professional successes. Not all female friendships are like that, Klausner demurs, but she's warning you.

Seriously? That's the kind of message you want to package in with go-girlism and rah-rah "we ladies deserve real men" dating anecdotes?

Sorry, Ms. Klausner. I just don't care about your book.
19 internautes sur 20 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 "What I didn't learn" is more accurate 26 septembre 2012
Par Scuffy - Publié sur
I am happy to say that I did not buy this book, but instead borrowed it from someone after being intrigued by the title. I have had my fair share of dating/sex mishaps, so I was hoping for a funny, self-reflective memoir that would make me think of my own stupid 20s and laugh. Instead, I just felt uncomfortable for much of the book. I could relate to her situations, but not to her view on them. She says repeatedly throughout the book that she is smart and funny, but I saw neither trait in her writing. It is my opinion that if you have to tell someone what you are, then you are not that thing.
Near the end of her book, she says it is not her intention to make people feel bad. She wants people to read this book and feel good. However, I am not sure how this could be possible unless she only expects carbon-copies of herself to read it. Her judgments don't come across as funny; they come across as close-minded and ignorant. She is severely lacking in self-awareness and seems to expect men to be able to read her mind. Instead of outrightly telling a man that she does not want him around, she pouts and ignores him until he leaves. The only part of the book that showed personal growth was when she opted not to have an affair with a married man and actually stuck to her decision (unlike with other relationships, when she would say "no" but then go ahead with sex anyway).
Klausner treats sex like it is something that happens to her, instead of something she takes part in. When she describes herself, it's as an aggressive person, but when she describes her situations, she clearly is expecting men to do everything and to read her mind about her desires. Her poor communication with other people, and about herself, comes across louder than anything else she tries to say. She inadvertently paints herself as an increasingly shallow person who desires men to make her feel better about herself, while at the same time screaming "girl power," without actually examining the discrepancy between those thoughts.
She casts judgment without understanding why, such as on vegans, bisexuals, midwesterners, Portlanders, and open relationships. Never does she examine why she would feel derisive, but expects people to understand her without her trying to understand them. She is the worst kind of hypocrite, as she lacks the self-awareness to realize that she is doing exactly what she demonizes other people for doing.
74 internautes sur 93 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
1.0 étoiles sur 5 More pathetic than funny 24 février 2010
Par The Observationalist - Publié sur
Oh dear. I really did want to like this book but I just couldn't find anything to like.

I had heard it was a must-read for any woman who's ever been single in NY. What I took away from this is that Julie Klausner is a deeply insecure woman with major self-esteem issues who made terrible choices because she was so desperate to be "loved".

I had heard it was funny. I think the potential was there but the author tries SO hard to show us how hilarious she is that she ends up tripping all over herself to create a wordy mess. Editor?

I had heard it was clever. Guess that depends on your definition of clever. I suppose if you feel it's clever to beat your reader over the head with arcane pop culture references or trot out the over-played gay best-friend character (with predictable smugness) you'll think this is clever.

Ugh. When I finished this book (and that in itself was a feat as I was tempted to hurl it under a subway on more than one occasion) I felt vaguely disgusted and sad. Women of the world: you are better than this.
20 internautes sur 24 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Amusing If Shrill 8 décembre 2011
Par blondewriter99 - Publié sur
Julie Klausner is primarily a comedienne, and therefore, the book isn't so much a series of stories but of sketches. And each one of them is about a loser guy who breaks Julie's heart after she (ohhh, nooo, not again!) jumps into bed with him, despite knowing better. I have nothing against women who have a healthy sexual appetite but by the middle of the book even Julie is admitting that she's not getting any pleasure-- either physical or emotional-- out of these arrangements. They seem done almost purely out of habit and a natural inclination towards light sadomasochism. The guys are all one dimensional idyuts (according to Julie) and she makes fun of them with a kind of over-the-top screechy insistence that most of them don't even warrant. One guy mentions he likes Burning Man so Julie slaps her knees and points and hollers to the reader, "Can it get any worse???" Well, actually, it probably could. All of the guys come in for this type of hooting and snorting, no matter if they seem to deserve it or not. The majority commit no greater crime than not quite having their lives together (as Julie doesn't either) and not wanting to have a relationship with Julie. Julie, for her part, doesn't seem to want relationships with them either. She just doesn't like the men being the first to call it quits. (She complains bitterly when men don't return an email or text, but then blithely reports committing the same acts when she herself isn't interested in someone.) That said, I kept reading the book, often into the wee hours, because despite the increasingly shrill depictions of these "loser men," Julie is, for the most part, a very talented writer and she does have a certain raw power and joie de vivre in her prose. I would have liked for her to add a little psychoanalyzation to her depictions: Why does she repeatedly have sex with men she cares nothing for and often isn't even attracted to? Why is she repeatedly hurt by men when she doesn't even seem to like them very much? But Julie is not the analytical kind, unless she is telling us why she doesn't like musicians, while simultaneously doing virtually nothing but chasing musicians. The book could have benefited greatly from a little emotional depth, some soul-searching, and some compassion for these men- who seemed just as lost and lonely as she was, if not as articulate. But the book is what it is, and if you enjoy the kind of raunchy bad date stories that are usually told over a few Margaritas with your girlfriends, then you'll like this book.
10 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
1.0 étoiles sur 5 Extremely disappointing memoir... 22 mars 2013
Par Mathew - Publié sur
I was looking forward to reading this book; I put it on hold with the digital library until it became available to read. I sat down looking forward to a funny, insightful book by what I thought was a woman with a sarcastic, self-deprecating wit! What I got was a disgusting sexual "tell-all" that wasn't funny, wasn't insightful, and definitely was not self-aware! Julie is like many other memoir writers I've read - she grew up in a privileged upper middle class home, had a loving mother and father, and takes every bit of it for granted without any self-awareness that not everyone - in fact, the majority of people in the world do not have her good fortune.

I was at first a little taken aback by her early interest in the act of sex - not love, not romance, but just lust and sex. I realized she was very different from me in that respect, but that didn't bother me in itself, I thought it would provide an insight into her behavior. However, she NEVER outgrows that look at sex as a animal act that she looks at from a disapproving and slanted point of view. Her crude language isn't the problem, it's how she uses it to demean men (and women). Sex should be wonderful and exciting - if it's not, then don't do it. No one was holding a gun to her head to commit these sexual acts with the men she chased. She only has herself to blame for her banal lifestyle. If she is looking for a real relationship, or great sex - she's looking in all the wrong places, and choosing all the wrong partners.

The other problem with the book is her stereotyped views of the people and world around her. Again, I don't want to sound as close-minded as she is, but as a young privileged, educated, Jewish woman, is she really that naïve and condescending about people from different races, sexual orientation, geographic location, and socio-economical circumstances? There are millions of young women (and men) in this world today who would love to have to opportunities and the comfortable lifestyle she has inherited from a loving family. Instead of using her good fortune to help the world become a better place, she runs around like a promiscuous princess sleeping with men and then criticizing them.

How depressing and disgusting...after a few chapters, I decided I didn't want to waste my time finishing this trite nonsense. Plus, the images of her sexual exploits were beginning to annoy me - and I didn't want any more of those images floating around in my brain.

Julie Klausner...grow up and use your talent to enrich the world - not exploit it from your privileged tower.
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