One of the unfortunate casualties of TNB 3.0 is that old comments, while still readable, will not “count.”

For the sake of posterity, then, here are the ten most-commented pieces in the history of The Nervous Breakdown:

What conclusions can we draw from this?  If you want a lot of comments, what you need to do is either a) use initials instead of your first name, b) found the site, or c) give birth to Lenore.

Duke is the Wayne Gretzky of TNB comments.  If you don’t follow hockey, here is a list of All-Time NHL points leaders by season:

1 Wayne Gretzky C 1985-1986 80 52 163 215 71 46 11 3 6 350
2 Wayne Gretzky C 1981-1982 80 92 120 212 81 26 18 6 12 369
3 Wayne Gretzky C 1984-1985 80 73 135 208 98 52 8 11 7 358
4 Wayne Gretzky C 1983-1984 74 87 118 205 76 39 20 12 11 324
5 Mario Lemieux C 1988-1989 76 85 114 199 41 100 31 13 8 1 1 313
6 Wayne Gretzky C 1982-1983 80 71 125 196 60 59 18 6 9 348
7 Wayne Gretzky C 1986-1987 79 62 121 183 70 28 13 7 4 288
8 Mario Lemieux C 1987-1988 77 70 98 168 23 92 22 10 7 3 2 382
9 Wayne Gretzky C 1988-1989 78 54 114 168 15 26 11 5 5 2 0 303
10 Wayne Gretzky C 1980-1981 80 55 109 164 41 28 15 4 3 261

Belardes is Mario Lemieux, Duke is Wayne Gretzky, and Brad is…Wayne Fencer, of course.

That 416 stands like DiMaggio’s 56.  Actually, it looks like one of those batting averages from the Rogers Hornsby era.  It may never be topped.

But then, records were made to be broken.  Especially Foreigner 4.  God I hate that album.

I’m wondering if writers in my Generation X age group who contribute their talents to various sites and newspapers, and yet don’t feel like they’re a part of a literary movement, might feel a kinship to this particular piece that I have never shared publicly until now. The Dead Generation is an excerpt from Chapter Nine of ‘Citrus Girl’ (about a third of that chapter). It was written sometime between 1996 and 1998. Could all be drivel. It’s up to you to decide. Part of it was edited by literary historian John Arthur Maynard of CSU Bakersfield who wrote ‘Venice West: The Beat Generation In Southern California.’