Friday, September 20, 2013

Nurse the Hate: The New Hemingway Plan

I have been busying myself re-reading some Hemingway novels, which always leads me to wonder why well-mannered European waiters aren’t obediently fetching me whiskey and Perrier that I can leisurely sip under the brilliant skies of the Cote d’Azur.  Instead I am thinking about buying a Bud King Can at a gas station with bulletproof glass service window for my drive home in traffic under gun metal gray skies.  Such is the danger of immersing yourself in the prose of Hemingway.  It’s a world of individuals that spend their days seeking amusements leisurely and then relaxing for exotic drinks at the drop of a hat.  No one appears to have a real job or source of income with the exception of fleeting mentions of trust funds back East.  It’s really a world I could get comfortable in and frankly excel.

I don’t know if I can somehow become a 1920s novelist.  Is that a job listing on or do you just start hanging out in cafes and discussing “your work”?  I can do the Hemingway thing.  I just need to put a modern reference in now and then.   “He walked across the street to the BW3 and it was windy and cold and when the door swung open they looked up from their Buffalitos.  She sat alone at a table with a draft beer in a plastic cup with hair that smelled of the Plains of Africa.  She didn’t look up.  “I told The Colonel that I hate your writing.  He needed to know you are nothing.”  He ordered a beer and ate the garlicky chicken wings brought by the expressionless fleshy waitress.  The beer was cold.  They went back to his room and made love like they had in Vitoria after the fiesta.  She shuddered as God brushed past her.  “I hate you.  Come and take me again.”  It was different this time and she cried and he walked to the window to stare out at the moon.  They slept.”

The stuff writes itself.

I think I would really enjoy sitting at cafes all day, getting together with other dudes that do basically the same thing I do, and then arguing about the merits of what we were writing.  I could go to artist enclaves and act distant and aloof.  Socially I will become much more unpredictable.  I foresee having all kinds of destructive sexual liaisons with women that are financial benefactors, treating them horribly, and then pretending none of it matters at all because of some sort of vague ever changing dogma.  I will be involved in fistfights with publishers and literary agents because I doubt their artistic purity, or perhaps I am just in need to create some type of protagonist drama.  I will argue with everyone about everything from any point of view, but only when blindly drunk on whiskey.  Otherwise I will be silent and quietly judgmental in my gaze.

I will travel to distant glamorous destinations for the sake of “my work”.  At each location I will make myself a self-important cog in the artistic community, quickly establishing myself as the judge of artistic worthiness of others despite not really producing anything tangible myself.  I will need to find apartments in Berlin, Morocco, Marseilles, and Buenos Aires, none of which I will ever pay for or even attempt to pay for in any manner.  I will drift around with my posse of other dudes, all of us convinced we are some sort of quasi Beat Generation on a new Moveable Feast.  The real trick will just to be able to sell it into a few key social kingmakers so we can enjoy this Beatnik Rogue Drifter lifestyle.  We will need hangers-on to pay for meals, drinks, etc. and that can only come from the heads of some key social circles giving us breathless endorsement so their minions will open their wallets.

Eventually I will produce a novel that is either incomprehensible or so simple it appears to have been written by a third grader.  In either case, I and my brethren will hail it as “genius” and we can keep our globetrotting lifestyles intact.  I may need to call on some of you to testify to my “genius” from time to time, but please know up front that I will allow you to absentmindedly smoke cigarettes on my terrace at my villa in Cadiz.  If you hang out long enough, you can start to reference your own “work” and then become part of the gang too.  It’s a good plan.  It’s a wise plan.  It’s a plan whose time has come.



At September 20, 2013 at 4:42:00 PM EDT , Blogger Frank said...

I'm in.

At September 20, 2013 at 6:27:00 PM EDT , Blogger Greg Miller said...

You'll be a very important painter that refuses to show his work. Welcome.

At September 21, 2013 at 12:27:00 AM EDT , Blogger Walter Zoomie said...

I have the guns and a shitty attitude. Do I qualify?

At September 21, 2013 at 8:14:00 AM EDT , Blogger Frank said...

It's all attitude and it should be presumptive.

At September 21, 2013 at 9:08:00 AM EDT , Blogger Greg Miller said...

Frank, that's why you are part of the inner circle.


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