Chuck Klosterman’s “Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs” is an expose on American culture from the 70s and 80s. In particular, Klosterman narrows in on such topics as “This is Emo”, “Porn”, and “Being Zack Morris.” While I skipped the chapters on heavy metal cover bands and most conversations about sports, I did enjoy Klosterman’s writing style and fresh perspectives on recent pop culture, most of which will never receive any other literary attention.
I would describe Klosterman’s style as boisterous and pedantic. Klosterman could probably write a book on anything that hasn’t been dissected well and form a well written opinion on it. In a lot of ways, Klosterman’s style reminds me of Frankfurt’s “On Bullshit” where Frankfurt uses a standard philosophical essay and techniques to write an article about nothing really, in fact, he writes an article which is as much about bullshit as it is bullshit in it of itself. Comparatively, Klosterman writes convincingly about obscure topics in the same way, however, Klosterman comes off much whineier and more scattered than Frankfurt.
What Klosterman clearly is begging for subconsciously is a girlfriend to love and hate his mediocrity in her own mediocre way. This woman will be plain but fascinated by Klosterman’s late night waxing on about pop culture trends. In this way, Klosterman will lose all his material and the time to write about such material to this special woman. Klosterman is one in an increasingly long tail of postmodern writers on pop culture and really write about nothing at all. Klosterman joins the ranks of Larry David, Seinfield, and David Sedaris. All awkward with too much single guy time on their hands and praised for celebrating their brilliant discoveries while watching TV, doing laundry, and interacting with non-family, non-co-worker social circles.
Why read “Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs”? Because you are eager to read about a postmodern perspective on pop culture and the nostalgia such topics ignite within you. For instance, I really miss Saved by the Bell, and Klosterman’s commentary on the mysterious appearance and disappearance of the female characters, senior year Tori in particular, was especially riveting. You will also enjoy Klosterman’s commitment to excellent grammar, diction, and syntax. You will not enjoy “Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs” if you hate pop culture and you hate postmodern commentaries from the likes of the aforementioned comedians in the previous paragraph. Oh shit, happy reading anyways!