June 16, 2008

"This orgiast has never become a hermit"

Just watched an entertaining interview with Jack Kerouac (in French, with English subtitles) and hope to get to a longer interview with Jack Kerouac in 4 parts -- 1, 2, 3, 4 -- later this week.

Also, saw Kerouac on William Buckley's TV program Firing Line in 1968. Even TV was so interesting back then!

The more entertaining and widely-known and longer-lasting feud with Buckley, of course, was with Gore Vidal; culminating perhaps in the vitriolic (and perhaps deserved) obituary ("RIP WFB—in hell.") by Gore Vidal after Buckley's recent death.

Enjoy the 1968 conversation between them here: Vidal Vs.Buckley: Part 1 (1968) andVidal Vs.Buckley: Part 2 (1968); with the choicest part excerpted here. (Noam Chomsky vs. Buckley is also an interviewing worth watching some day: 1, 2; though it should be said that Chomsky was far more polite after the passing of Buckley, saying he was "considered...not by me... but considered to be witty, articulate, knowledgeable and so on..and much respected; again, not by me ..but I'm giving the general impression.")

Speaking of Gore Vidal, wikipedia has some interesting tidbits about his family history.

Vidal's father, a "brawny, handsome" West Point all-American quarterback who was director of Commerce Department's Bureau of Air Commerce (1933–1937) of the Roosevelt administration, was one of the first Army Air Corps pilots, and, per biographer Susan Butler, was the great love of Amelia Earhart's life. In the 1920s and 1930s, he was a co-founder of three American airlines: the Ludington Line (merged with others and became Eastern Airlines), Transcontinental Air Transport (TAT, became TWA), and Northeast Airlines (founded with Earhart), and the Boston and Maine Railroad. The elder Vidal was also an athlete in the 1920 and 1924 Summer Olympics (seventh in the decathlon; U.S. pentathlon team coach).

Interesting!! The Earhart connection and him starting TWA, NWA and other airlines that is...not just that Gore Vidal's father was a "brawny, handsome" quarterback and an Olympian!

Also learned something new - that there was another Senator Gore, Thomas Gore, Gore Vidal's maternal grandfather. Apparently, he was blind and from Oklahoma and not from Tennessee. Although quoted as being a distant relative of Al Gore in many sources, the wikipedia link for Thomas Gore indicates that they are NOT related as "Al Gore descends from a John Gore who was in Virginia by 1653 while Thomas P. Gore descends from a James Gore who was born in England or Wales in 1662."

More interesting stuff in wiki about Gore Vidal's mother too:
Gore Vidal's mother was an actress and socialite who had her Broadway debut in Sign of the Leopard in 1928. She married Gene Vidal in 1922 and divorced him in 1935. She later married twice more; one husband was Hugh D. Auchincloss (stepfather of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis) and, per Gore Vidal, she had "a long off-and-on affair" with actor Clark Gable. She was an alternate delegate to the 1940 Democratic National Convention.
Interesting lives!

Leave you with couple interesting links to interviews with Vidal -- one old and one very recent.
Gore Vidal: The Art of Fiction No. 50 Interview with The Paris Review, Fall 1974

A Gala Conversation with Gore Vidal 1 hour interview with Melvyn Bragg followed by a 17 minute audience Q&A session. Recorded in London on May 20, 2008 as part of The Spectator's ongoing IQ2 Debates series. (mp3 format)

No comments:

Not one more refugee death, by Emmy Pérez

And just like that, my #NPM2018 celebrations end with  a poem  today by Emmy Pérez. Not one more refugee death by Emmy Pérez A r...