Book #12 I, Fatty by Jerry Stahl

“The Old Country treated me like a king – even more than on my first visit. Girls in Paris kept putting their pantaloons in my soup. I don’t know if that’s a tradition or if they were low on dinner rolls.” – I, Fatty

This book has the most marvelous set up I have ever read. In the Introduction it explains how “Fatty” Arbuckle, a famous silent movie actor, was an addict of heroin ever since it was prescribed by a bad doctor after a botched surgery. After he was falsely accused of murder and rape, he lost everything except for his Japanese manservant who stayed with him more out of having no place to go as no one would hire someone linked to Arbuckle rather than out of loyalty. The servant had always adminstered Arbucle’s heroin doses so after he could no longer afford to pay him the servant extract salary in another manner. He would refuse to give Arbuckle his heroin until he told part of his story. The wiley man continued this until he had all of Arbuckle’s story.

The only problem is that I don’t if this is true or not. The front of the book says “a novel” but every review I’ve read treats it as the true story. Fiction or not this book was fantastically well written. In the end it’s exactly like my dating history – incredibly humorous and at the same time heartbreakingly pathetic.

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