For an egomaniac like me, getting invited back to your alma mater to speak to students is like...a dream.
Actually, for an egomaniac, it's more like...expected.
"It's about damn time they let me start inflicting my views on today's youth."
I was invited to give a reading, followed by a Q & A alongside my manager Craig T. Wood, followed by a signing, all at the ritzy new Newhouse 3 building (not yet built when I attended Syracuse). But, I must not be a full-blown egomaniac because I braced myself for a potential flop at each step.
Luckily, a large crowd arrived, including numerous professors from my past. Unluckily, I hadn't exactly prepared for my first career reading. Personally, I kinda think author readings are lame--books are to be read by YOU, not ME to you (unless you're a child, illiterate, or retarded; 2 out of 3 demographics that would actually probably dig my book)--and that's why I'd intentionally placed myself on this 30 Bars in 30 Days tour where I'd bypass the typical lame bookstore stop. But, when your school asks you to present a little storytime to the enrolled kiddos, you do it.
Without much thought, and little time to consider it due to perhaps being too busy touring or too hungover over the previous few weeks, I selected Footchapter 3, "How to Fail to Write Commercial Material," figuring it to be nice and brief, yet packed with comedy, and even somewhat inspirational as a discussion starting-off point.
I hadn't figured, or rather recalled, how much profanity was packed into Footchapter 3 until I was standing behind the lectern already performing for dozens and dozens of eager minds. I'm not 100% sure that I'm the first person to say "cunt" and "twat-licker" in front of a packed classroom full of students, professors, and even the late arriving dean (!), but I'm certain I'm the first person to ever be applauded for it.
I sold a cuntload of books, and Craig and I were essentially given a standing offer to return to Syracuse and Newhouse to speak whenever we see fit. We'll certainly see fit quite a bit more. A massive success.
FAIL OF THE DAY:
The aforementioned dean attempting to purchase my book via SUpercard, the Syracuse University intra-school debit card, typically used for late-night muchies runs to the dining hall Burger King or Sbarro's.
SUCCESS OF THE DAY:
A higher up at Newhouse's Career Center purchasing a book for said Career Center, having me autograph it to them, and then noting that she is going to encourage all would-be seniors to read it before entering the "real world." Genius!
DRINK(S) OF THE WEEKEND:
*After the speech, we moved onto a book signing at Chuck's Cafe, a classically divey and overstuffed college bar where the beer may be abject swill, but at least it's only $3.50 a pitcher. A PITCHER. Those $3.50 pitchers made our books and t-shirts seem quite costly in comparison, but eventually, even low ABV swill gets one drunk if you buy enough of it, and we moved a lotta paper.
*Saturday, my "How to Fail" team spent all day tailgating in Syracuse's windy arctic weather for that evening's massive Cuse/UConn football tilt. We rubbed elbows with Sean Keeley and the Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician crew and I was honored to share a delicious bottle of Dogfish Head Bitches Brew with my heretofore Twitter-only buddy Hoya Suxa. The beer was a rich and creamy African honey stout (?!) and gone oh too soon.