Sunday, August 26, 2012

Pussycat Fever by Kathy Acker.

Pussycat Fever by Kathy Acker.  Paperback book published by AK Press 1995, 75 pages with black and white illustrations.  

In my younger, impressionable and adventurous years, I read a number of Kathy Acker books.  Starting with Blood and Guts in High School and finishing with In Memoriam to Identity, I remember these books as being difficult and somehow a little unfulfilling, which is why I ended my relationship with the works of Kathy Acker.  In other words, my reading of experimental punk post modern sex positive feminist writing, is no more. 

A few years back I bumped into an old acquaintance that I hadn’t bumped into for a number of years.  For some very strange reason in our brief 5 minute conversation outside a supermarket, he began excitedly telling me how reading Kathy Acker had changed his life.  I found the conversation a little uncomfortable as all I could think about was my current lack of enthusiasm for her works and how could I politely change the conversation… which I was unable to do.  Most importantly though, this confession of his reminded me of Kathy and her oeuvre which was something that I hadn’t thought about since Kathy and I parted ways.  She died in 1997 and this encounter with my old acquaintance was at least 10 years after the fact, leading me to the conclusion that despite my personal lack of enthusiasm, Kathy still has a fanatical fan base… of at least one fan… probably more.

This book was published a few years before she died, which was also the year that she toured Australia.  I know she toured Australia as this book has a ticket stub for the show, which at a guess was probably her reading from her works and talking about all sorts of stuff.  The original owner probably bought this book at the show as this copy is signed which was as good a place as any to buy a signed copy of Pussycat Fever particularly here in Australia.  Whenever I find a Kathy Acker title I always think of my acquaintance, which I guess is why I pick them up… also, they seem to sell.

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