By: John Zachary Townsend

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Broken Badly: A Memoir by Walter White Jr.


Hey Sharon!

Here is a sample chapter from my memoir, Broken Badly: A Story Of Lies, Cancer, and Crystal Meth. It’s about growing up with a father who secretly made and sold crystal meth. This chapter focuses on the first car my dad bought me, and how I lost my virginity. I hope you enjoy it! Let me know if it’s too sexual.

Badly Broken:

A Memoir by Walter White Jr.

It’s weird to admit that I couldn’t stop thinking about my father the first time I saw a woman’s breasts in real life and not on a tilted computer screen, but admitting the uncomfortable and weird has become a part of my daily regiment ever since I learned my father was one of the biggest manufacturers of crystal meth in the country. To me, it’s as normal as brushing my teeth, eating breakfast, preparing a poached egg omelet with a side of freshly cut strawberries and Lemon Ricotta Pancakes, and taking out the trash.

In the end it wasn’t the girl who broke my heart, but my father, who broke my heart like an egg on the side of a measuring cup, only to be scrambled and fried into a Spinach Mushroom Omelet.

I reached into her underwear. She was as wet as a glass of orange juice. She grabbed me bellow the belt, and I was harder and crisper than a slice of bacon.

“Do you want to have sex?” She asked. What reason would an awkward teenager with cerebral palsy have to decline a beautiful Blonde cheerleader’s offer of sex?

“I do.” As we made love, I was consumed by an intense love, but not for the beautiful woman I was making love to. I was consumed with love for my father. I was here because he bought me a cool car, and suddenly I wasn’t just the school sympathy case, I was that cool kid with the hot car girls were suddenly oddly into.

I was not supposed to be the guy uncomfortably disrobing in the back of a Ford Mustang with a blonde cheerleader. I was the guy born with cerebral palsy, the guy who needed crutches to walk; and yet suddenly here I was, sucking on breasts, her nipples as soft and round as silver dollar pancakes.

I did not think it was entirely impossible that I might sleep with a beautiful girl. I just imagined it would be under Revenge of the Nerds like circumstances, where I lure her into a dark room with a Darth Vader costume, only revealing my true identity after I had truly wooed her with my unexpected sexual prowess.

But in the end, I didn’t need a Halloween costume or a plot device from a raunchy 80’s comedy to sleep with my high school crush. All I needed was a Ford Mustang, and a dad who made Crystal Meth.

We were a Middle Class family. My father was a chemistry teacher at a high school I later attended, an okay job for a guy with a Master’s Degree. He was once a partner with Elliott Schwartz, the founder of Gray Matter, that absurdly successful pharmaceutical company you read about on Huffington Post. My father refused to talk about why Elliott became a millionaire who owned guitars that were signed by Eric Clapton and my father worked a part time job at a car wash. He was a proud man, my father. To think I used to respect him for keeping so much to himself.

For years, I naively assumed my father’s overnight fortune was the result of buying the shitty car wash he once ashamedly labored part time for. My mother told me he made a lot of money gambling, and they decided to buy the car wash.

Over breakfast one morning, a truly amazing breakfast featuring breakfast tacos with egg, chorizo and jalapenos, freshly cut strawberries, a tall glass of milk, blueberry pancakes, Canadian bacon, baked beans, hash browns, Count Chocula cereal, Earl Grey tea, and toast, my father came in.

“Would you like a car?” he asked.

The cheap dad who made us buy our jeans at the outlet mall asking me if I wanted a car? I didn’t know how to answer. “Sure. I wouldn’t mind having a car.”

Twenty minutes later we drove by a Used Car dealership. But my dad didn’t stop. I assumed he had missed the exit for a minute. That minute turned into three.

“Dad you missed the Used Car lot.”

“I did, didn’t I?” My father replied, pulling up in front of a nearby Ford dealership. “I’m sick of used things. I’m tired of settling for used. I’m tired of being used. Let’s start a new life. Right now. With a new car. Is that alright with you?” He asked. “Or do you want me to turn around? I think I saw a nice used Toyota Corolla in my rear view window ‘”

“Fuck used shit!” I screamed. “I mean. If it’s cool with you, I’d love a new car. I am also tired of being used,” I said, completely unaware of how used I was about to become.


Very great Walter! Or should I say Flynn?!?

You have a very moving, amazing life story. I feel very confident we can find a publisher for this. My only note: I’m a little thrown off by all the breakfast imagery. I’m not sure I get what you’re going for. What is it supposed to mean? It feels a little forced at times, and kind of bizarre. Is this symbolic of something larger? Was your dad a big breakfast guy? Where does this breakfast obsession come from? You have such a rich life story to draw from, I think we’re getting a little too distracted by the breakfast stuff. Great story otherwise though! I will pass this on to my friend at McSweeney’s.

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