Outlet or a Heaven Full of Televisions

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9780974694016: Outlet or a Heaven Full of Televisions
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As a lowly shoe pimp in an outlet mall, Scott Sundvall casts a lyrical and interrogative eye on American culture. With both searing drama and comedic irony, the author: takes a road trip to Mexico, where the meaning of life can be had for one dollar; meets Newt Gingrich in a divinely metaphorical D.C. bathroom; indulges in vodka and psychedelics to within three yards of death; faces one friend’s suicide attempt and another’s disappearance into rehab; and finally undergoes observation at a psych ward in the midst of an emotional epiphany. Full of anger and yearning in an existentially indifferent world, the 20-year-old author of this "memoir with elaborations" ultimately finds some clarity and purpose amid dead pigeons and clearance leather shoes.

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From the Author:

A memoir with elaborations." Are you being cheated? Conned? As you read, will this categorization force you to stop and ask, time and time again, Did this really happen? It did. It’s true. Have certain things been enlarged or reduced, colored according to my desires, painted over or made transparent, wrapped up in blue bows and sent out for Christmas? Yeah. How is it possible not to do this? We remember people and events the way we want to remember them, not the way they really are or the way they really happened. Memoir is always a creative art.

This book is my personal campaign against camera viewpoints. Despite this advent of a cultural thirst for reality—more and more reality, as close as we can get please—we know Ronald McDonald better than our second cousins in Kansas. In this hollow age, we venerate documentaries, "reality" shows, and yes, memoir. But do we identify more with what is real on the outside or with certain ways the outside is taken inside, interpreted and re-formed?

I wrote this book as a prolific refutation to myself. It will not get you any closer to me than a work of fiction would. But maybe as I get closer to myself, you will get closer to yourself, too. We can only tell so many truths before we start fabricating fictions. And we can only tell so many fictions before we start relating truths. If this is an advertisement, then yes, I am lying to you. But do your dreams lie to you, too? Are they only commercials of your desires and plans? Are you buying and selling? Is it real? Would you like it to be?

About the Author:

Scott Sundvall grew up in Southern California but currently attends the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. He likes the circus and wishes more people would take an active role in shaping it. Scott has worked as an usher, a shoe salesman, a con artist, a coffeemaker, a manager, a factory boxer, a Teamster, a hash brown flipper, a professional asshole, a lover, a fraud, a data entry representative and, whever possible, an unemployed loafer. He likes green best of all.

Some of Scott's authorial mentors have been the Beats, Hunter S. Thompson, and Arthur Rimbaud.

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Scott Sundvall
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