LOS ANGELES — 43-year-old burnout and failure Tom Johnson noted this morning that author Charles Bukowski was 50 years old when his first widely published work was released, reminding himself and anyone within earshot of the fellow late bloomer and degenerate.
“I’m just trying to tell my truth to the world,” Johnson said before leaving for his job in the dish pit at IHOP. “I’ve got a unique perspective, but you have to put in the effort before you can expect something out of it. And if that effort involves hanging on to the hope that some people got a late start while refusing to do any legwork, then so be it.”
“Progress isn’t linear, man,” he added.
Indeed, the personal details of the famed author’s life have served as a sort of blueprint for Johnson’s own, including the model of writing compulsively and publishing in whatever place will have him — which he swears will “just happen when it happens.”
“I drink like a fish, dude. And just like Chuck, I get fired a lot. I’ve had sex with a bunch of people who own snakes,” Johnson explained. “It’s just a matter of time before I really blow up — I’ll do whatever it takes, and I respect the process. It’s never too late.”
According to longtime friend Stacy Wilcox, Johnson not only doesn’t write much of anything, but also is not active in any bands, and hasn’t performed anything publicly in well over a decade.
“I’m not really sure what he’s expecting to happen other than somehow magically being successful years from now,” said Wilcox. “15 years ago, it was that LCD Soundsystem guy… then, Tom was all about Alan Rickman, until he turned 40. I don’t know what comes after Bukowski.”
“We’re all very scared for him to turn 51,” she added.