Review: “Notes of a Dirty Old Man” by Charles Bukowski

“Notes of a Dirty Old Man” is a collection of a column with the same title that Bukowski was writing for an underground newspaper, Open City, starting in 1967.

Fun fact: The FBI has investigated and kept notes on Bukowski because of that column. I have no problem believing that, after having finished this book.

what’s the difference between a guy in the big-house and the average guy you pass on the street?

the guy in the bighouse is a Loser who has tried.

All those short articles are filled to the brim with the author’s iconic dark humour. It is not a read for the easily offended. Frankly, Bukowski isn’t a writer for the easily offended. He writes the observations on people, the world, the society and many more, from what he believes to be a truthful point of view.

there is only one place to write and that is ALONE at a typewriter. a writer who has to go INTO the streets is a writer who does no know the streets.

You can feel Bukowski’s tiredness through and through. The stories are filled with reference to alcohol, drugs, sexism, sex (a lot of it), toxicity in multiple shapes and forms. The stories tend to get disgusting, but if you dig deep enough in the shit that the author presents, you are able to find the harsh truth. At times, you could even say this read is entertaining, but what it is all the time, is disturbingly honest, ugly – real.

an intellectual is a man who says a simple thing in a difficult way; an artist is a man who says a difficult thing in a simple way.

It is not what I have expected from this book, but I suppose the most beautiful words of Bukowski were found within all the chaos, which makes sense.

it takes practise, a little laughter and some luck.

I find it extremely difficult to rate this read, it is not your traditional novel, I cannot even recommend it, simply because I don’t believe a lot of people will understand what it was meant to serve. I myself have had a hard time with it.

Have you read any of Bukowski’s work? If so let me know what you thought of it down in the comment section. Thank you for reading this review and until next time, Dream On, Dreamers!

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