March 5, 2013

I want to live alone in the desert
I want to be like Georgia O'Keefe
I want to live on the Upper East Side
And never go down in the street

Joy Feasley, Green, 2007

* Blake Bailey on The Lost Weekend. Did the cinematic classic destroy the literary achievement? excerpt:

The Lost Weekend—a novel about five disastrous days in the life of alcoholic Don Birnam—was an improbable success when it was published in 1944. Rejecting the novel, Simon & Schuster had assured its author that it wouldn’t sell in the midst of a World War (“Nobody cares about the individual”); within five years of its publication by Farrar & Rinehart, The Lost Weekend sold almost half a million copies in various editions and was translated into 14 languages. Its critical reception was no less impressive: “Charles Jackson has made the most compelling gift to the literature of addiction since De Quincey,” Philip Wylie wrote in The New York Times. “His character is a masterpiece of psychological precision. His narrative method … transmutes medical case history into art.”
Billy Wilder had bought The Lost Weekend at a kiosk in Chicago, and by the time his train arrived in Los Angeles he’d read it twice and quite definitely decided to make a movie based on the book, despite its then controversial subject: an alcoholic, as opposed to a comic drunkard or lush. “Not only did I know it was going to make a good picture,” said Wilder, “I also knew that the guy who was going to play the drunk was going to get the Academy Award.”

* Check out this video of Lou Reed (who turned 71 this week): performing in Paris, 1973

* “The point I discovered is that the best technique is none at all.” —Henry Miller


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Given what I've seen of Georgia O'Keeffe, and her numerous acolyte scholars, I do NOT wish to be like Georgia O'Keeffe.

Sherwood Anderson

12:50 PM  

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