Thursday, October 19, 2006

Defining New Ways To Be Stupid

Gerber, Michael. 2006. Freshman.

If you're worried about losing brain cells, don't bother picking up Michael Gerber's new book Freshman. It is 340 pages spent describing and defining new and old ways of being stupid and wasting one's life. Perhaps that wasn't his outset, I believe his intentions were to create a funny and lighthearted story about a guy and his dumb friends and what they like to do to waste their time their freshman year of college. But essentially there is no difference between the two. Guys might find it funny, I wouldn't know and couldn't begin to judge. But unless you're the kind of girl who laughs at the crudest, crassest humor--essentially 90% bathroom humor at that--then don't bother with Freshman. (If you find pee the most funny fascinating subject in the world, this is the book for you!)

Hart Fox is your average guy. He's smart, but not rich enough to go to the college of his dreams. Trip Darling is his enemy. The rich kid. The jock. The very definition of brainless. But Mr. Darling has a plan. He will pay for Hart to go to college IF he takes all of Trip's classes for him in addition to his own. But he's not a saint. He's running for political office. And his generosity doesn't include funds for living OR for books. But deluded into thinking college life at this particular college so incredible it would be worth doing anything even for his biggest enemy...he agrees.

Whan ensues is a rather long description of random events mostly centering on drinking, doing pranks, having sex, and to some extent going to school and studying--barely. But even at its highest moments where the book is enjoyable, it does not make up for the rest of the journey. Perhaps its weakest and stupidest moments are when Mr. Darling offers several fraternities the opportunity to KILL--literally kill--Hart Fox because he's won the election and he doesn't want him around. And then the reader is forced to read about one botched attempt after another.

The author's description of his book: It's school like it ought to be: loud, eventful, and full of swearing!

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