'X' Marks The Spot


From St. Louis Post-Dispatch (June 1, 1995)

by Jabari Asim

The man who helped perpetuate the term "Generation X" doesn't want to discuss it anymore. In fact, Douglas Coupland recently told an interviewer he never even thinks about it.

The problem, he said, is that his name is "so wrapped up in identity politics" and his work is "widely misappropriated by just about all viewpoints to mean just about anything and nothing."

Coupland, 33, would rather talk about his most recent - and fourth in as many years - book, "Microserfs" (384 pages, ReganBooks, $ 21). The new novel follows the adventures of eight computer programmers who work for software giant Microsoft. Coupland has structured his story in the form of a computer- generated diary featuring varying fonts and misspelled e-mail memos.

For example, two full pages are devoted to graphically rendered binary codes: "0100100100100000011010..." And I thought Jackie Collins was hard to get through. Sir Duke No, that's Duke, not "Dookie," so if you're looking for a tasty tidbit about Green Day, park your peepers elsewhere.