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Chapter 40
October 29, 2017

Notes To Future Biographers

Looking over the literary landscape, one sometimes gets the feeling that there are two kinds of writers: those who write, and those who write biographies about those who write. It is inevitable that even the most obscure writer will have a biography written about him or her, if only because there is only so much one can say about James Joyce before one fervently wishes to drown oneself in a vat of dog shampoo.

Not being James Joyce, sooner or later somebody will want to write a biography of me. For those in desperate enough need of a Masters thesis topic to do so, I offer these notes in the hopes that you will portray my life accurately:

I wasn't a homosexual. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.) I wasn't in denial about being a homosexual. Anybody who looked at my clothing could tell that immediately. It wasn't that I was unaware of fashion; it was just that I preferred to use the precious moments of my life to obsess about other things. (Not that there's anything wrong with that, either.)

When I say "obsess about other things," I do not, of course, refer to the kind of obsession that results in substantial property damage and/or loss of life. I mean the good kind of obsession, the kind that keeps life interesting enough that you don't have to pursue the bad kind. It's more like a very, very, very passionate hobby, really.

I never had a relationship destroyed by Angelina Jolie. We could never get our schedules straight. I wasn't a gaffer on Paris Hilton's sex tape. I mean, really: you'd think that a billionaire heiress would have sprung for better lighting! I did star in a sex tape of my own, but it won a Droopy Award as the worst hardcore film of the year; all of the copies were subsequently melted and made into genital-shaped earrings that were sold out of carts in Times Square. (To be fair, my genitals were not the model.)

I wasn't an alcoholic. I took a sip of wine on the Sabbath and at Passover Seders until I was old enough to stop, at which point I stopped. I had a beer once when I was at University and decided it was the vilest thing I had ever put in my mouth. (Yes, I led a somewhat sheltered life. Not that there's anything wrong with...well, anything that did or did not happen to me.)

I used two inhalers for asthma, and the occasional antihistamine when my allergies were bad. The only substance I could be said with any reasonable honesty to have abused was chocolate. If that's wrong, I don't want to be right.

I never bribed a politician to do something inane in public so that I would have something to write about. I never had to. I never slept with anybody in the publishing, film or television industries to further my career; one look at my career would prove the truth of that statement. I was never tempted to kill my rivals in order to promote my work; I did often think of killing Linwood Barclay, but that was just to put him out of his misery.

I never ran over a pedestrian with my sports car, fled the scene and got my politically connected father to cover the whole thing up. I did drive for a few months. The worst thing that happened was that I hit a patch of ice and slid into a parked car at about five miles an hour. Oddly enough, this soured me on the whole "driving = freedom" equation, and I never drove again.

I was never much good at math, anyway.

I never abused my family's Mexican maid. Come to think of it, my family never had a Mexican maid. I never abused the Mexican maid my family didn't have. Okay, I may, on occasion, have tortured the English language, but, to be frank, it was a willing victim.

I must admit, to my ever-lasting regret, I did not score the goal that won the 1972 Canada versus Russia hockey tournament. I didn't hit the home run that won the first ever World Series for the Toronto Blue Jays. I wasn't the one who unseated Tiger Woods as the highest earner on the PGA tour. I, uhh, did have a shutout as a goalie in a game of road hockey when I was 12, but that would probably merit no more than a few words in any real, self-respecting biography.

Good luck finding something interesting to write about...

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