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Wade Rouse Archive

Wade Rouse

This Blows: A Life in Hair

March 11th, 2009
by Wade Rouse

PALM SPRINGS, CA-

I’ve long wanted to write a memoir on hair.

I already have a title: “THIS BLOWS: A LIFE IN HAIR”

It would be about how our hair defines us, from birth to death … the hairstyles over time … our infatuation with our stylists … the incredible time most women and gay men spend on our their hair, for first dates, school photos, job interviews, speeches. I can remember my time with each and every one of my products, my brushes, my blow drier, my styles intimately.

Hair, like clothes, define an era. Moreover, I think our hairstyles defines us as people … our willingness to take risks, be individuals … or not.

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Wade Rouse

I Put The Stud in Study Hall

February 17th, 2009
by Wade Rouse

SAUGATUCK, MI-

I spent the first part of my 43rd birthday shopping at Abercrombie Kids, ripping T-shirts out of the arms of a boy who probably weighed, oh, maybe 60 pounds, if he happened to be carrying a sack of potatoes and a human head.

If I couldn’t recapture my youth, I could certainly buy it.

“Score!” I had screamed to my partner, Gary, while displaying an XL boy’s T-shirt that read, “I Put the Stud in Study Hall.”

“Jesus,” Gary laughed. “Just buy it before Chris Hansen gets here.”

Yes, my 43rd birthday had hit me hard. This meaningless day made me feel like I was in no-man’s land: 22 years from retirement, 22 years since the day I was able to drink legally.

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Wade Rouse

Dream A Little Dream

January 22nd, 2009
by Wade Rouse

SAUGATUCK, MI-

I just returned from NYC, where I visited my agent, Wendy Sherman (GORGEOUS!) and my publishing team at Crown/Random House. Gary ransacked SoHo, singlehandedly reviving the retail economy, while I sat down with marketing, publicity and editorial to discuss the launch of my upcoming memoir, At Least in the City Someone Would Hear Me Scream: Misadventures in Search of the Simple Life.

In many ways, the trip was a dream. But, in many ways, it was a gut-check, too.

Wendy asked, after I returned home, to share my experience. You can find it on her site at: http://wsherman.com/blog/blog.asp.

I’ve also included it below … I hope it inspires and helps.

-Wade

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Wade Rouse

Miss Porter’s & Me

December 15th, 2008
by Wade Rouse

SAUGATUCK, MI-

As the author of a current memoir on elite prep schools (CONFESSIONS OF A PREP SCHOOL MOMMY HANDLER), I have, naturally, been transfixed by the current scandal at Miss Porter’s School.

In a nutshell, a girl is suing Miss Porter’s after she was expelled, allegedly for cheating on a test, violating school rules, etc. The girl, however, says she reacted this way after being taunted and tormented for months by a group of girls that called itself “The Oprichniki,” apparently named after the 16th-century Russian secret police that brutally eliminated Ivan the Terrible’s enemies.

Miss Porter’s, btw, is one of the nation’s oldest, most elite, most expensive prep school’s, boasting an eye-popping A-List of alumnae, from Jackie O to Gloria Vanderbilt.

The truth will certainly play out, in some form.

I know.
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Wade Rouse

Election Day: A Family Story

November 5th, 2008
by Wade Rouse

SAUGATUCK, MI-

One of the worst days of my parents’ marriage came mere weeks into it, before I was even born, over a November pot roast dinner when my mother admitted – as she scooped mashed potatoes for my father – that she had just voted for JFK.

For my father, this was a more horrifying revelation than if my mother had yanked up her apron to reveal, say, a kangaroo pouch or footlong penis.

My father simply eased his chair back, according to family lore, left the table and “went for a drive.”

My father is a lifelong Republican.

I come from a family of lifelong Republicans.

The elephant is as much a part of our DNA as astigmatism and a wicked arch.

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Wade Rouse

The Customer Is Always Wrong: My Life in Retail

September 19th, 2008
by Wade Rouse

SAUGATUCK, MI-

A while back, I was asked to contribute to an essay collection with a wonderful concept: Authors writing about their experiences working in retail.

The book, entitled The Customer Is Always Wrong: The Retail Chronicles, will publish October 1 from Counterpoint/Soft Skull Press, a smaller, independent press. I contributed to the book not only because it featured a wonderful concept and great group of contributing writers (T Cooper, Colson Whitehead, Po Bronson), but it was also my understanding that a portion of the proceeds would go toward helping independent bookstores, an incredible cause, to say the least (contributors, btw, received no advance and will receive no royalties). 

I was asked to contribute by editor Jeff Martin, who is (steady yourself here for the biggest irony of all), a bookstore clerk in Oklahoma. Jeff contacted me because he had read my first memoir, AMERICA’S BOY, and was taken with my experience working in retail at Sears. As a child, I was a Winnie-the-Pooh clothing model, before ballooning into a Husky’s kid and college student, whose first real job came, more irony here, working at Sears. In AMERICA’S BOY, I wrote about how I told my supervisor at Sears — after witnessing an endless army of effeminate chubby boys march through the Husky’s corridor crying — that I truly felt a therapist should be stationed in the section along with a clerk. My suggestion was not heeded.

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Wade Rouse

Tales from the Green Room

September 15th, 2008
by Wade Rouse
.!.

SAUGATUCK, MI-

So, a large part of any writer’s life is shilling his work.

Or it should be anyway.

I hate it when I hear writers say, “That’s not what an artist should do. I’m above that.”

Well, I ain’t. And I don’t know many writers who are. You have to be willing to tell readers about your work. You have to spend time letting readers get to know you, on a personal basis. You have to sell yourself, and your wares.

Some shilling can be very glamorous; some is shit. I’ve appeared on a lot of radio shows at 6 a.m. where some dumbass morning DJ from some station with KISS in the title asks me, over and over, why I don’t like, and I quote, “to bang chicks.”

“‘Cause my equipment’s not wired that way,” I once responded.

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Wade Rouse

Signs the World Is Coming to An End

September 11th, 2008
by Wade Rouse

SAUGATUCK, MI-

My attempt to help save the world, one cultural tidbit at a time:

Sure Sign the World Is Coming to An End and Our Children Are Doomed-(From Publishers Marketplace) Star of MTV’s reality show The Hills, Lauren Conrad’s three-book YA series, inspired by her own journey, “about a girl who moves to LA and stars in a reality show,” to Harper Children’s.

Words & Phrases That Need to Come to an End in Order to Save my Sanity-
McCain: “My Friends …”
Obama: “Lipstick”
Weather Channel: “Category” Whatever
My Partner, Gary: “Guuurrrrlll!”
Me: “Dillhole” … as in, “You’re a complete dillhole.”

Suggested Names to Help Hurricanes with Their Poor PR Image:
Sassafras
Rihanna
Shiloh
Zac Efron

Sure Sign the World Is Coming to An End/Part 2-I have the exact same eyeglasses as Sarah Palin.

Sure Sign the World Is Coming to An End/Part 3-There are individual categories for “Penis” and “Vagina” on TNB. 

Sure Sign the World Is Coming to An End/Part 4-I will undoubtedly use them at some point.


Wade Rouse

I, Robot

November 4th, 2007
by Wade Rouse

SAUGATUCK, MI-

I don’t know what made me watch the remake of “The Bionic Woman.”

But still I sat down, like the rest of America, to watch the latest warmed over version of creative-free pablum.

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Wade Rouse

The Wonder Years: How A Blind Dog Taught Me to See

May 1st, 2007
by Wade Rouse

SAUGATUCK, MI-

Three days into spring, just as the mounds of dirty snow had melted into tiny rivers that forked through the hollows of our Michigan woods like country interstates, we found a dog.

Our neighbors, who own a blueberry farm that backed our woods, actually found it, calling us early one evening, just after daylight savings time when the sun was still perched high in the sky.

“We just found a dog lying in our compost pile. Think it’s dead.” 
 

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