"I'm Full of Hate and I Love It"

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"Who can I trick into my room first? I can sweep someone off their feet, tell them what they want to hear, be all nice and sweet, and then 'fuck 'em like an animal, feel them from the inside,' as [Trent] Reznor said...

"I want to tear a throat out with my own teeth like a pop can. I want to gut someone with my hand, to tear a head off and rip out the heart and lungs from the neck, to stab someone in the gut, shove it up to their heart, and yank the fucking blade out of their rib cage! I want to grab some weak little freshman and just tear them apart like a wolf, show them who is god. Strangle them, squish their head, bite their temples in the skull, rip off their jaw...the lovely sounds of bones cracking and flesh ripping, much to do and so little chances."

Showing them who is god began to look easier after they bought firearms at a local gun show in December 1998. "Today was a very important day in the history of R," Harris wrote. "Today along with Vodka and someone who I won't name, we went downtown and purchased the following: a double-barrel 12 ga. shotgun, a pump-action 12 ga. shotgun, a 9mm carbine, 250 9mm rounds, 15 12 ga. slugs, 40 shotgun shells, 2 switchblade knives, and a total of 4 10-round clips for the carbine. We...have...GUNS! We fucking got 'em you sons of bitches!"

"R" probably is short for Reb, Harris's nickname. But it could stand for "revenge" or "Robyn," as in Robyn Anderson, the "someone" Harris wouldn't name -- the eighteen-year-old classmate who served as straw purchaser for the two underaged gunmen that day.

The exultation of the shopping spree was clouded by one sad note.

"You know, it's really a shame," Harris continued. "I had a lot of fun at that gun show, I would have loved it if you were there, dad. We would have done some major bonding." But Harris was already in trouble at home for getting caught with a flask of whiskey; his major bonding over the next few months was with bombs and shotguns.

Harris made only one entry in the journal in 1999, two weeks before the attack:

"Months have passed. It's the first Friday night in the final month. Much shit has happened. Vodka has a Tec 9, we test fired all of our babies, we have 6 time clocks ready, 39 crickets, 24 pipe bombs, and the napalm is under construction. Right now I'm trying to get fucked and trying to finish off these time bombs.

"NBK came quick. Why the fuck can't I get any? I mean, I'm nice and considerate and all that shit, but nooooo...The amount of dramatic irony and foreshadowing is fucking amazing. Everything I see and hear I incorporate into NBK somehow...feels like a goddamn movie sometimes...

"I hate you people for leaving me out of so many fun things. And no, don't fucking say, 'Well, that's your fault' because it isn't, you people had my phone #, and I asked and all, but no no no no no don't let the weird looking Eric kid come along, oooh fucking nooo."

That is how the journal ends -- not with the howl of the wolf-god, but the whine of the pathetic geek who can't land a prom date.

And decides everybody deserves to die.

When the first SWAT officers entered the school library almost four hours after the shootings, they found a dozen bodies and one badly wounded girl. The two gunmen were lying in their own blood in a far corner, bombs and guns scattered around them. Klebold was on his back. Harris was crumpled up next to him, leaning against a blood-spattered bookcase.

The top of Harris's head was gone. When the coroner's people moved the body, a "mass of blood" fell out of the open skull and landed on the carpet where Klebold's body had been.

Although questions linger about Klebold's death -- gun in right hand, wound in left temple -- there was no doubt that Harris killed himself. He stuck a shotgun in his mouth and excavated the cranial vault. He blew his brains out.

It was as if, after blaming his misery on "all the fat ugly retarded crippled dumbass stupid fuckheads in the world," the snotty rich toadies and the bitches and the un-self-aware and all the other despised people who needed to be winnowed out, he'd finally elected to deal with the problem at its core.

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Alan Prendergast has been writing for Westword for over thirty years. He teaches journalism at Colorado College; his stories about the justice system, historic crimes, high-security prisons and death by misadventure have won numerous awards and appeared in a wide range of magazines and anthologies.
Contact: Alan Prendergast