The Fish
for 8 August 1997. Updated every WEEKDAY.
Suck Staff

Joey Anuff
Joey Anuff


Terry Colon
Terry Colon
Art Director


Ana Marie Cox
Ana Marie Cox
Executive Editor


T. Jay (the man) Fowler
T. Jay Fowler
Production Manager
& Ass Kicker


Heather Havrilesky
Heather Havrilesky
Senior Editor

Suck Alumni
Suck Alumni Text

Carl Steadman
Carl Steadman


Sean (Duuuuude) Welch
Sean Welch


Owen Thomas
Owen Thomas
Copy Editor


Matt Beer
Matt Beer
Development Manager


I don't want to give you
anything but time, this is
the easiest place to send
off, to me anyway. I was
hoping for some mention in
that Martian cartoon of "that
rock that looks like a
homeless person" that that
NASA guy referred to in the
initial news conference on US
TV. Why did they stop
referring to it that way? Big
lumpen homeless person on the
horizon of Mars. The guy
seemed to think it was funny
at the time, now it's "Yogi."

Mars needs Women - Mars needs

Laurie Colson

That NASA guy was taken out
back and shot. Anyway, better
to demean ourselves by naming
alien rocks after cartoon
characters than to embarrass
ourselves by alluding to an
issue that reflects just how
inhumane humans can be.

The man from Mars eats


Fish With Letter Icon

Kill 'Em All


Big laughs for me reading
"Kill 'Em All." No doubt that
Mars Bonfire was not reading
Burroughs, but one small
correction: "heavy metal"
does not appear as a
free-standing phrase in Naked
but I am fairly
certain that the introduction
(you know, the ramble about
having a look around at
Honest Bill's Lunchroom)
refers to "the Heavy Metal
Kids": junkies who have
slowed their metabolism to
the point where their spines
are like "frozen hydraulic
jacks." If not Naked Lunch,
then in the sequel, The Soft
I don't have copies
to check anymore ... mine
went to the used bookstore 20
years ago, after I got the
skinny on Steely Dan and The

Jim Bordner, Gravity Music

It's funny, I haven't looked
at a '60s Burroughs novel
since the '80s, but the two
Metal tomes I consulted,
Deena Weinstein's Heavy
Metal: A Cultural Sociology,

and Robert Walser's Running
with the Devil: Power,
Gender, and Madness in Heavy
Metal Music,
are both at
great pains to disabuse us of
the notion that the term was
in Naked Lunch (Walser, a
former "professional
musician" with a
"conservatory background"
who'd surely get his "ass
kicked" in the "parking lot"
at any worthwhile Metal show,
even got two (!) friends to
read Naked Lunch for him to
check[!!]) and to, um, abuse
us of the notion that it was
in Nova Express. If you have
to read a Heavy Metal book,
Weinstein's was 1) not
written by a former
"professional musician" and
2) actually includes Venom in
the index, but they're both
boring; read Chuck Eddy's
Stairway to Hell instead.


Fish With Letter Icon

Metal will never die, it will
cannibalize itself and begin
anew with an even more
sensationalist and grating
sound. How else will the
children of former punks,
bangers, and metalheads annoy
their parents with their
music (let's not talk about

Fish With Letter Icon

The Uses of Enchantment

It's interesting to me that
the point of your article
seems to be "they're kids,
forgive them." I know nothing
of the three metal heads you
mentioned towards the end,
but the girl in New Jersey is
a dispicable specimen of
humanity no matter how you
slice that story. No matter
how the child died, her
disregard for her baby's, her
own, and her classmate's
health was appalling to say
the least.

When I was an adolescent in
7th and 8th (not too long ago
at all, believe me) I spent
my time playing games,
arguing politics, studying
math, and reading Orwell. My
concern at the time was that
kids wern't getting treated
with the same respect as
adults - I personally wanted
to vote at 16 (this was my
big issue). Now I see that
the big issue for kids is
impersonating their favorite
TV character (be it Beavis or
the Menendez brothers). It's
a major cop-out to imply that
the inexperience of youth is
any kind of excuse for the
major felonies kids AROUND
THE WORLD (majority in the
US) are increasingly
committing. You know right
and wrong: By 7 you know not
to throw things at people; by
10 you've learned hitting is
bad; and by 14 when you've
learned how to load a
semi-automatic 9mm handgun,
you sure as hell know that
discharging it in the
direction of another human
being is going to bring
consequences a little more
severe than grounding.

Todd Mentch

It wasn't my intent to forgive
the New Jersey mom, just to
call attention to how
demonizing her makes it easy
to ignore the stickier and
more ambiguous cultural
issues which undergird her
situation. Niche marketing
has made for a increasingly
divided American culture -
with their own television
networks, music artists, fast
foods, personal technologies,
and catalogs, teenagers and
children exist more and more
in a separate consumer
universe, and therefore a
separate cultural universe
than their elders. Hyberbolic
rhetoric about juvenile crime
and the easy moralization and
easy answers that come with
it widen that same gap.

A gap that has an analog in
your argument: You imply that
(except for you) teens are
stupid mimics, unable to
distinguish between goofball
fart jokes and double
homicide, and yet you also
suggest that a junior high
school kid with a gat will
somehow be able to judge when
to use it. Maybe he'll just
kill his television.

I have no trouble at all
believing that 7th and 8th
grade were "not too long ago"
for you; your vindictiveness
toward adolescents reeks of a
convert's sanctimony....
However, seeing as how you've
cast yourself as some kind of
since-day-one, I bet you were
an asshole even back then.


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Lemme get this straight.
According to someone calling
themselves Ann O'Tate (how
cute) in The Uses of
Enchantment, "The
vilification of the New
Jersey high school senior who
gave birth" (and also death,
by the way) on prom night is
"small-minded." What's more:
"[Critics'] speedy damnation
is an exercise in ... petty

So condemning the murder of a
child is petty stuff to be
engaged in by intellectual
inferiors insufficiently hip
to understand that, dammit,
sometimes you just have to
take a little kid down. What
would Ms. O'Tate prefer the
public's reaction have been?
A standing ovation? A little
help tightening the grip
around the poor kid's neck?

I'm a new reader of your
publication, and I hope that
all your writers are not as
"open-minded" as Ms. O'Tate.

Clint Conatser

Actually, my original draft
included the suggestion that
we eat the child.

All for Swift justice,


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