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Long Past Stopping: A Memoir

Long Past Stopping: A Memoir

by Oran Canfield

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Oran Canfield—son of self-help guru and Chicken Soup for the Soul creator Jack Canfield—tells his surreal story of growing up in Long Past Stopping. In this remarkable memoir, writing with a wry and cutting edge, Canfield relates tales of a childhood in flux—being buffeted about among family friends, relatives, rebels, and born-again circus clowns, in an anarchist private school, communes, and libertarian enclaves—and of a young adulthood spent among the ruins of heroin addiction. Long Past Stopping is Oran Canfield’s often hilariously harrowing tale of surviving life in the strange lane.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061937217
Publisher: HarperCollins e-books
Publication date: 09/15/2009
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 336
File size: 685 KB

About the Author

Oran Canfield was raised in Massachusetts, Philadelphia, New Mexico, Arizona, and the San Francisco Bay Area. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, and works as a musician and freelance art handler.

Table of Contents

Prologue: In which our speaker begins to weave his yarn in a cellar full of strangers 1

1 In which our protagonist sets foot in this world, survives a nuclear meltdown, and learns the secrets of juggling from a traveling group of hippies 3

2 In which a young man is introduced to the pleasures of a dark substance, through the benevolence of a learned professor 12

3 The adventures and misdeeds of the boy and his brother on a dirt lot in New Mexico 21

4 Tells of how the young man came to be enslaved by the mighty god Chiva 43

5 Wherein the boy encounters a holographer, a born-again Christian, and his Jewish grandmother, and lives to tell about it 61

6 In which he meets a girl and accidentally exposes his terrible secret 72

7 In which the boy finds himself living among misfits, radicals, anarchists, and robots while performing daring feats with a band of clowns 87

8 In which our subject tries to escape from the powerful clutch of Chiva, and is transformed into a bull-person 96

9 Is where he gets some new clothes 112

10 Tells of a series of bad decisions, which lead to a terrible fall 119

11 In which the young boy comes upon an evil dictator, and starts a revolution 125

12 A reconstruction of confounding events, as our protagonist tries to escape the noble intentions of his friends and family 132

13 In which the boy finds himself in trouble with both sides of the law 142

14 Sees our protagonist stand his ground against a pack of fanatical well-wishers 151

15 Presents evidence that extracurricular activities lead to communism 160

16 In which the young man is caught in a torrential downpour of fecal matter and encounters pure evil in the form of a rock 168

17 In which a journey to the outlands finds our protagonist in the back of a cop car sniffing a curious white powder 180

18 By what low road he arrived at his father's house 200

19 On how he came to eat a bit of paper that is said to open minds 208

20 Recounts a daring heist from the police and a subsequent visit to the psych ward 215

21 In which he is saved from untimely death and avoids broccoli and zucchini through his own resourcefulness 229

22 Is long, but holds the reader's interest through a series of comical interludes 238

23 In which a no-handed woman learns to juggle, and a son halfheartedly bats a pillow 259

24 Shows the disastrous consequences of a walk to the store 269

25 Mostly concerns the uncomfortable topic of sex 277

26 In which a learned doctor tells our subject about the god Iboga, enemy of Chiva 288

27 In which the boy sets out to become a man, but does a terrible job of it 299

28 Chronicles the journey to a faraway isle in search of the mystical god Iboga, who reveals the identity of our subject's true nemesis to be none other than himself 309

Epilogue: In which our speaker brings his audience up to date 320

Gratitude list 322

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