Don’t Put It In Writing

This is what my dad always says, “Don’t put it in writing.” He doesn’t believe in leaving written evidence of anything–“It’ll bite you in the ass, Miss B.”–and so, he thinks Tiny Cat Pants is stupid.

Him and Aaron Fox.

Yep, Aaron Fox has come back to bite me in the ass. Well, Aaron Fox is not biting me in the ass, literally. Something I wrote back in February has just now come to his attention. You can see his comments at the end, but I’ll also bring them up here.

Hey, Aaron Fox here. And I would simply point out that you are being unfair by not reading my work, article or book. You are taking a complete simplification of my paper in CMGtW by some reviewer as a correct statement of my views. I self-identify as upper middle class in my book and clearly in the article in question. I am open about my own love for alt country, Gillian very much included. And that “working-class” picture you cite is just me dressed for one of my old jobs, since I made my living for about a decade as a country guitarist. If you’re gonna slam me so hard with the class bat in print, it’s really kinda obligatory to read *my* words before representing them in yours. I’d love to discuss the paper with you, publicly here or on my blog if you’d like, and would listen most respectfully to this argument if it was informed by a fair representation of my views. I’ve heard it before, many times, and I concede its force. It’s really the same as the argument you accuse me of making (which I don’t) that one’s class background defines the authenticity of one’s experience. Of course it doesn’t. You are, in fact, using class to stereotype me (I put myself through Harvard working two and sometimes three full time jobs, and I’m the son of a professor and a nurse, not a banker or a president, I smoke, and like it sounds as if you do, I live pretty much paycheck to paycheck. What does that make me, a Rockefeller?)

Well, America, I have never been so politely called a jackass, and rightfully so. I am a jackass and I was shooting off my mouth without knowing what the hell I was talking about. I don’t even have the excuse of saying I was drunk, because as much as I talk about all my drunken adventures, I don’t really drink that often and I never post drunk.

I have insulted the man’s honor and, though I feel bad about it, I’m not sure how to make it up to him. We could have a duel, maybe. Or he could smack me with an umbrella every time he saw me. Something.

For starters, I’m going to actually read the essay and talk about it like a grown-up. We’ll see how that goes.

Shoot, what’s next? Nat Hentoff?

2 thoughts on “Don’t Put It In Writing

  1. Just went back and read that February post, and yes, I guess you were a bit harsh on the dude. But hey — it was well written and from the heart.

    You are not a jackass. You’re a brave and classy human for revisiting the issue and pointing out your (alleged) mistakes. So there!

  2. Aaron here, and you’re being too hard on yourself. Thanks so much for responding with . . . class. I look forward to hearing what your impressions of the actual article are.

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