Charles Bukowski on Individuality

Poet/author Charles Bukowski is known for living most of his life as a drifter, bouncing around from one job to the next, hanging out in seedy bars, and then going home to drunkenly write away on his typewriter. But in this old interview (sorry, we don’t know the source) we get a chance to hear him talk about why he settled into that lifestyle. According to him, individuality ends at age four. After that, people are conditioned by society to start going through the expected motions of life. “You get caught into the stricture of what you’re supposed to be and you have no other choice,” he says in his trademark drawl. “I didn’t like this, and I didn’t like the eight hour job. I didn’t even like the four hour job. So I decided I would rather starve and live on the edges of nowhere than do anything at all.” Ahh, Bukowski. Such an optimist.

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