Christopher Hitchens, April 13, 1949 – December 15, 2011.
And I was going to make him laugh one day, proving once and for all that women are funny. No time now.
Beautifully expressed by a writer whose one real talent was his ability to make himself the "adored object of many credulous and uncritical observers" through "the gradual manufacture of an illusion."
@La Cieca: calmate, just let it go
@flatfootafleet Right: this is a time for gooey sentiment, just the sort of sendoff a contrarian gadfly merits.
@La Cieca I was never a particularly big fan either, but if pressed to say something nice, I guess I would say that he got many people to discuss issues with one another that they may not have publicly debated in the first place. So I guess that's a positive?
@saythatscool That's the difference between us, I guess: I don't feel pressed to say something nice.
@La Cieca didn't say anything about gooey sentiment, you just seem a little too invested in going the other way. Oh well, you have a wonderful Friday. See…just. let. it. go.
@La Cieca I see your point too, Cieca. Believe me.
@flatfootafleet I'll thank you not to try to read my mind or to patronize me by saying "just. let. it. go." Hitchens was a glamorous figure who did vast damage, and, as is predictable, the responses to his death are going to focus on the glamour without (at least at first) any reflection on how it was precisely that quality that made Hitchens so dangerous. (And I don't use "dangerous," here in the sense of "mad, bad and dangerous to know," but rather as "would have been actively genocidal, had he been capable of crawling out of his scotch bottle long enough to organize a proper pogrom.")
I used to work at The Atlantic and he would usually turn in his book reviews at around 2AM, probably after his typical daily consumption of two bottles of Johnnie Walker Black, but they were always sharp and well-written. I don't know how he did it. Loved him, even when I didn't like what he was saying.
@RonMwangaguhung (Amazing! I did the Greek year at St. John's too. Oh boy, a long time ago now.) Loved this story a lot. Wow.
@LondonLee NO idea what happened there. What I meant to say was: SAME. And well said.
Guy was a grown-ass adult when he advocated for a war that was a crime. The end.
Dude was a great writer and always an interesting read, even when I didn't agree with him. Probably should pick up some of his long form stuff, since I mostly read his columns.
One of the best trolls out there. Here here, Hitch.
I liked the part where he got a bikini wax.
@Mr. B – and he was willing to get waterboarded.
@Ham_Snadwich More frightening, but much less painful.
And so the last bearer of the Adequacy Dot Org standard sinks into the sea. Trolling will never be the same again.
I had the great pleasure of meeting Hitch in London during the run up to the War in Iraq. It may have been a debate with George Galloway, but regardless, he argued the "pro" position on the war to a universally opposed crowd and was met with unequivocal condemnation and disapproval. Afterwards, he took up a position in the theatre bar and there, disheveled, sweaty and fat, with a cigarette and whisky in his hand, he took on any and all comers who wanted to take a shot at the champ. I disagreed with him on the war and history proved he was wrong, but still, what a great wit and incredible work-rate. His voice has been silenced now. RIP, you bastard.
@sigerson This is almost as appealing as Woody Allen's version of Hemingway: "WHO WANTS TO FIGHT?"
My boozy lunch with Christopher Hitchens, who was my mentor in the summer of '95
@RonMwangaguhung thanks for this.
@RonMwangaguhung something went wrong with my comment!! (see above.) such a story!
May he burn in hell for his cheerleading of the Iraq War.
Too bad there is no afterlife, which really pisses me off in this case. Anyway, fuck you, you articulate, funny, SOB. We're missing you already. And I'm not taking back the hell thing.
@namedropper – I think Hitchens' reasons for supporting the Iraq War were more complicated than the neocons he got lumped in with. Sure, he was in favor of deposing Hussein, but he was also in favor of intervening in Bosnia, Rwanda, Somalia and Libya. More anti-dictator than anything else.
@Ham_Snadwich this is illuminating: http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/63587/christopher-hitchens/just-causes?page=4&cid=soc-facebook-in-review_essays-just_causes-121611
though its still a royal fuck up.
The Best Time I Met Christopher Hitchens…
He and my father shared a love of alcohol and excoriation. One weekend Hitch and I were both visiting my father, I was probably about 14.
I had made the mistake of arriving with several copies of People magazine, and probably had expressed my love of Princess Di.
My father thought it would be hilarious to set me up. And so he prodded me–oh so gently–to ask his friend for "the british perspective" on the monarchy.
Needless to say, my eyes were opened to any number of human foibles after that incident.
He was always gracious, at least to me, the child of his occasional friend. To this day he's the only man I've ever seen match my father for alcohol consumption, which is no small thing.
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