Leaning with Intent to Fall: A Memoir

Ethan Clark, Author Garrett County Press $14.95 (186p) ISBN 978-1-891053-04-7
Despite the title's suggestion of a life lived on the edge, this tepid series of disjointed, sometimes-amusing stories probably fare better in person, over a beer or three, than they do relegated to this slim volume. A noted New Orleans 'zine author and editor, Clark spins tales of irate fireworks customers, public drunkenness and cross-country hitchhiking fairly well, but falters when taking potshots at ""The Establishment"" (SUVs, Wal-Mart) that never progress beyond familiar disaffected punk-rocker posturing. There are genuine laughs to be found, however, and Clark offers a rare look into the unique subculture of bike punks. Unfortunately, few stories achieve a climax; it's telling that the title-a fabled, trumped-up charge that NOPD once used to harass local punks-is explained thusly: ""If someone started telling a 'leaning with intent to fall' story, it was a signal for me to stop listening to anything they said."" Less patient readers might want to heed that advice; those immersed in the punk lifestyle, however, may find comfort and recognition in humdrum highlights like collecting copper wire for cash and surviving a 13-day-long summer storm.
Reviewed on: 12/24/2007
Release date: 08/01/2007
Open Ebook - 200 pages - 978-1-891053-27-6
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