Any Press is Good Press, Except When You’re Still Broke: Broke-Ass Remains Yours, Truly

Babydolls, holy shit. That’s the best Broke-Ass can come up with for an introduction. Holy shit–and lord, has she missed you.

So, just where the fuck has she been? Broke-Ass, as is known to some, lives under the same metaphysical roof as Susan Gregory Thomas, as they are, in fact, the same person. Susan Gregory Thomas, the writer and author, has just come out with a book called In Spite Of Everything: A Memoir (Random House: July 12, 2011) and has been writing for, and doing interviews with sundry esteemed media outlets. All have yielded positive, albeit exhausting, experiences. Which is a great deal for which to be grateful. None, however, has yielded much in the way of money.

It is one of those surreal circumstances of cognitive dissonance that is so difficult to square in one’s mind: How can it be that a person speaking with Matt Lauer on The Today Show, having an hour-long interview on NPR, writing a front-page story for The Wall Street Journal’s Weekend section, and more, still find herself as essentially penniless as she has been for the past four years? It doesn’t seem right. Surely, that reasonably-dressed, basically coherent person is rolling in it. Aren’t all reasonably-dressed, basically coherent people invited to speak on morning television and NPR and write for The Wall Street Journal at least solvent?

Not if they’re idiot writers like BAG-SGT. Writers like BAG-SGT seem to write stuff that people like to hear about, or read about, but not actually read. Perhaps this will change. Wiser folk than this profoundly retarded duo have counseled that it’s still too early to tell–that the book may yet become a big-seller. Perhaps, and if this does come to pass, no one will be happier than the schmushkies, who are so worn out by their stress-puking, addled mother that it practically makes her stress-puke again just looking at their worried, lovely faces. But, sadly, it looks as though this day will not land soon enough.

Babydolls, Broke-Ass has to sell the ranch. Literally. The Rancho del Broke-Ass is on the market, complete with chickens, post-recession Victory/Failure garden, and all its good witchy and homey vibes. The blunt-edged truth is that Broke-Ass just isn’t making it in Brooklyn. Although she’s had her three children here–and has spent her entire adult life in New York–she just cannot afford to live here anymore. In spite of living on beans, fresh eggs, and canned anchovies. In spite of seeming to be getting a bunch of great press for her book. In spite of everything. Also, in spite of everything, it looks as though the one place she may have a shot of making it is outside Philly, where she spent one hell of an adolescence, as chronicled in the book and periodicals mentioned above.

Frankly, it’s so damned heart-breaking, she’s finding it hard to complete this entry. What can anyone say? As Broke-Ass has often irritatingly been known to advise the schmushkies, all the misery in the world comes from not accepting reality. There it is.

Broke-Ass will find a way to make it work. At this point, it’s something of a specialty. But it still seems awfully sad. At this point, Broke-Ass will listen to David Bowie’s beautiful “Rock and Roll Suicide,” say the rosary because it is so transporting, and head to bed. What a life, eh?

But it’s true, you know: Oh, no, love, you’re not alone. Thank God for those schmushkies. Thank God for all of you.


About brokeassgrouch

I'm goddamned broke and grouchy. I live in the middle of the damned ghetto and raise chickens for eggs; grow all my own vegetables and fruit; bake the bread and make the cleaning products. Why? Because I fucking have to, that's why! That's what you do when you're fucking poor! You have to make the shit yourself, dumb-ass! Broke-Ass Grouch is sick of all you Bennington and RISD trustafarians yapping about your "urban farming co-ops" and your "carbon conscious lifestyle" and your "green choices" in the Times Styles section and every alternapress periodical that you can pick up for free in every eye-wateringly expensive, edgy bakery or green-market. Maybe when you have a trust fund, you can make "choices" or have a "lifestyle" or "decide" how to "spend" your "money." Excuse me, but Mama is just trying to feed her kids over here, you little shits. And stop spraying your art-school graffiti on the fence of the vacant lot across the street from my house. I know who you are, and I'm telling my friend Keith (who lives in the projects) that it was you who painted that cartoon of the African mask. So what can I tell you? I don't fucking know. I know a lot about being broke, sure as Bob's your fucking uncle. I know about how useless an Ivy League degree is when you're flat-ass broke. I know how to unclog a drain with baking soda and vinegar, and I know how to make my own CHEESE, for fuck's sake. You tell me.
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12 Responses to Any Press is Good Press, Except When You’re Still Broke: Broke-Ass Remains Yours, Truly

  1. glad to meet says:

    this is a sad one… I hope you are doing ok in spite of everything!!!!

  2. jen l says:

    I”m really sorry. I’ve actually just started thinking about where i can afford to live in bklyn, too & haven’t come up with anything yet. i feel like my life is tracking yours — just a year or so behind. stay strong, dynamic duo.

  3. germanbride says:

    sending congrats and consolations your way. and much love.

  4. Barbara Spencer says:

    Well…damn. Bought the book, read it in one sitting. Wishing you and babes best luck in Philly. Hard times.

  5. xo – also sending you good wishes and hopeful thoughts. the economy (and our place in it) sucks.

  6. Jen abrams says:

    Bought your book today, before reading this post. Philly is a good place, broke-ass. And this city chews people up and spits them out. It’s brilliant, but profoundly unforgiving. You’ll be missed here, but I wish you abundance in your new home – in a place where abundance is a bit easier to come by.

  7. helaine says:

    I’d love to talk to you about this when you are up for it. Many similar conversations up here at Casa de Chaos on the Hudson, though I don’t know if we will really do it in the end. Otherwise, 2011 sucks. The only bright side is that the Wall St folks are finally getting it handed to them on a platter too.

  8. Tifany cain says:

    So unfair! I’m buying two more copies of that fantastic book this week.Good luck!

  9. BAG/SGT, I love your book, and this post breaks my heart. Seeing all the amazing media scores, it’s shocking to hear that hasn’t translated into the big sales, or at least the medium sales? Ouch, to understate it. I’m rooting for you, as are all your readers….

  10. GiRRL_Earth says:

    Dear BAG,

    That sux! I have missed your posts. You are the one who inspired me to start my own blog, which references you throughout. Heck, I even wrote you an email, which I assume you didn’t receive. Oh well… I hope the $$$ starts to roll in for you. I ordered your book and await it’s arrival from Amazon.
    Best of luck,

  11. momuphigh says:

    You’re my hope, though i’m not a writer, just a dreamer. Sucks, reality bites, come out this way to the rocky mountains, it’s beautiful, clean air, clean water (unless those frackers get their way), good schools (free), community.

  12. I hope your relocation goes smoothly. If it is any consolation, when the money from the book does come in, it will be possible for you to use the money in more varied ways rather than all of it going to the bare necessities that are so insanely expensive in NYC. As you build your new support system in the Philly area, consider contacting Katie Mulligan. She’s a friend of mine from my time in central NJ, a pastor and a single mom. I think you two are kindred spirits. Check out her blog, if you like:
    Thanks for your blog – I get a sense of solidarity from it. I’m making chicken, squash soup, and bean soup a la Broke Ass tonight to put in the freezer for the week. And we now buy in bulk!
    Looking forward to reading your book.

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