For those of you who could not make it on 7/10/12, Tottenville has included two of the four reports below. This monthly event, performed at Le Poisson Rouge and hosted by Leigh Stein and Sasha Fletcher, features book reports that are usually funny, unparalleled, ribald, and original. Be sure to check out the next book report reading in August.
Click here to read writer/blogger Ted Travelstead’s hysterical book report on My Donkey.
Below is our very own Matthew Daddona’s book report on Nikki Sixx’ The Heroin Diaries. Matthew writes in letter form from a sixth grade perspective.
Dear Ms. Rossum,
For our 6th grade book report I decided to write about THE HEROIN DIARIES by bass player Nikki Sixx. Nikki Sixx was part of the famous 80s band Motley Crue. You said not to do this report on someone you wouldn’t know, but since my dad says they are the greatest band of the century and he’s older than you, I thought you would be okay with it. Here is what the cover look like!
This book has a lot of dates. He starts the diary on Christmas 1986 and ends it on Christmas 1987. He says he started the diary because
- He has no friends left
- So he can read back and remember what happened the day before
So if he dies, he leaves a paper trail of his life, or as he calls it, a suicide note.
I asked my dad what suicide is and he says it’s when somebody leaves a good band, like when Vince Neil left Motley Crue or when David Lee Roth left Van Halen.
This report is in letter form because I wanted to write like him to get as close to the topic as possible because I really like Nikki Sixx even though his name is made up, I still think he’s a cool guy. This report will also be divided into sections which use his words.
#1 – THIS IS HOW IT STARTED…WELCOME TO MY NIGHTMARE
I got the idea for this project one night when my dad came home late singing “Girls, Girls, Girls” very loud he woke me up. I heard a girl laughing and thought it was my mom, but then remembered she was in San Francisco for work. So I went to say hi to my dad and saw him in very tight pants and makeup on, and that is when he said Motley Crue is the best band ever, and by the way this is Susan, she came over to listen to some records. Susan said to me, “Hi, Nice to meet you” and then sung “I’m such a good boy, I just need a new toy.”
I knew right then I had to listen to this band.
# 2 – THE BEST PART OF FREEBASE IS BEFORE THE FIRST HIT
Nikki Six is living in Van Nuys, California while writing this diary, which, by the way, is very sad because he never leaves his room. Occasionally, Nikki goes to the backyard where he drinks and suntans and listens to albums. Then sometimes he goes crazy; he calls this crazy self Sikki.
Nikki (or Sikki – sometimes it’s hard to tell who is writing) has a girlfriend named Vanity. She always comes over with a lot of coke – a mountain, Nikki writes. But instead of drinking it like most people do, they blow lines. There are no pictures of them doing this in the book, but I’m curious of what it looks like. Maybe if I find out, we could do a show and tell in class when it’s time to present this book. Up to you, though.
Vanity is as crazy as Sikki. She yells a lot and does not make sense. Things about Jesus and la-la-la-la-la-la-la. Sikki describes her as a crazy, wild black chick who was a backup singer for Prince. They snort and inject together, and cook up rocks, which she showed him how to do and I didn’t know people were able to cook up rocks. Can people cook up other things –like dirt or cement?
# 3 – ITS ZERO OR TEN
Friends pop in here and there in the diary and talk about Nikki like he wouldn’t be able to hear what they’re saying. Vince Neil said
“You know the problem with Nikki Sixx? He can’t do anything just a little bit. He can’t do a little bit of coke-he’s got to do all the coke. He can’t take a little bit of heroin-he’s got to take all the heroin. He just can’t have one sip of wine-he’s got to drink the bar out. There’s no middle speed for that dude-it’s zero or ten.”
After asking my dad, I found out today that coke is not really coke – it’s bad stuff. So is heroin. But dad says Wine is okay as long as you’re older. And this is true because he drinks it and gets really happy and sticks out his tongue and wiggles it and sings “Kickstart My Heart.”
Now that I know what heroin is, I see that Nikki Sixx does a ton of it. Also, I notice I can no longer do a show and tell about coke because drugs aren’t allowed in school. Up to you, though.
# 4 – SOME DAYS I’M KING KONG WITH A BASS GUITAR
Woah, what an insane entry. Nikki writes that after Jason, the guy who brings him heroin, leaves, Nikki starts hearing voices and his veins start collapsing. He is going wild with all the heroin – he sees faces, smashes all his awards, and even his bass guitar. All while Vanity just sits there.
At the studio in February, Nikki gets so bad that he has what he calls “blackouts” where he can’t remember anything. The band asks him about marks on his arms and hands and Nikki tells them that he had a fight with a cat. The band doesn’t believe Nikki, but I do. Even if it wasn’t a real cat, maybe it was Vanity who he sometimes calls Kitty Kat and chases around the floor jumping over piles of coke and scratches her eyelids until they bleed.
I don’t think Nikki’s band members and friends like Vanity so much. Don McGhee wrote:
“Nikki was into Vanity, but I think a lot of that was because she has come out of the whole thing of dating Prince. Rock stars are star-fuckers. Nikki might just as easily have grabbed Granny from the Beverly Hillbillies! Frankly, Vanity was not very attractive around that time. She was out of it an awful lot and she looked like a real mess. Let’s just say that when you are strung out, personal hygiene is one of the first things to go.”
I looked up Vanity in the dictionary because you say it a lot when talking about Principal Kavarsky.
It means “Excessive pride in or admiration of one’s own appearance or achievements.”
So I think Vanity probably liked how she looked, even if she was always “coked up.”
Speaking of Vanity and definitions, Mrs. Rossum, you told our class to make a list of words we didn’t know from the book.
# 5 – I’VE JUST BEEN HIDING ALL DAY UNDER MY SHEETS
Words and phrases I don’t know and will probably look up:
POMPOUS FUCK – my dad says it to my mom, but leaves out the pompous part.
SHIT – never mind, I know that word
“I’VE BEEN BUFFERING MY ITCH WITH VALIUM AND VODKA-AND-CRANBERRIES” Yes, that entire phrase.
# 6 – RANDOM THOUGHT: CLEANING UP IS DIRTY WORK
From May-August, right before the tour, Nikki does his best job to stay away from drugs. He makes it fourteen days. But he barely eats anything and is always mad at people, especially Jason who still wants to come over and get high and “fuck instruments.”
Sorry for all of this bad language, Ms. Rossum but it’s what’s in the book.
During the tour, the diaries aren’t as sad. That’s because Nikki Sixx is kicking ass on the bass and the band is traveling everywhere and stealing limos and doing fun stuff. Also, when they play “Smokin’ in the Boys’ Room” they light a fire on stage and all jump through it. Nikki and the rest of the band wish Tommy Lee would get stuck in the fire. But he always comes out of it and pretends to piss on the audience.
But the tour is not all fun because
# 7 – CHICKS=TROUBLE
Well, not really. Actually, it was a combination of coke, alcohol, and pills that sent Nikki to the hospital the night of December 23, 1987 where he was said to be dead for two minutes. But then they revived him.
Nikki talked about the experience, saying:
“I came to in a hospital bed. There was a cop asking me questions, so I told him to go fuck himself. I ripped out my tubes and staggered in just my leather pants into the parking lot, where two teenage girls were sitting around a candle. They had heard on the radio that I was dead and looked kind of surprised to see me.”
Okay, maybe girls are trouble.
The book ends on Christmas 1987 where Nikki realizes he’s still alive and wants to stay alive and doesn’t want to die. He wants to start another diary.