Wishing all my American friends a sober and peaceful Thanksgiving. Enjoy family togetherness and food cooked with love and make space for the lonely stranger or orphan at the feast. And when the beloved family members tread on toes and push the same-old-same-old buttons, breathe in deeply and surrender it all, let it go, take another slice of honied pumpkin pie –
My Nanowrimo novel-in-the-making has reached the sum total of 32 000 words and I am about to give up. I may have a short story there, buried in the digressions and Maryness and good intentions paving the road to hell or writer’s block.
Intriguing review of a new tell-all non-fiction book on alcoholic film actors, Robert Sellers’ Hellraisers: The Life and Inebriated Times of Richard Burton, Richard Harris, Peter O’Toole and Oliver Reed. An element of riotous drunkalogue perhaps:
Peter O’Toole: “I did quite enjoy the days when one went for a beer at one’s local in Paris and woke up in Corsica.”
But the reality is a much sadder and more predictable story. Alcoholism had the last word.
Anyone horrified by the reckless abandon of “Hellraisers” should know what its ultimate effect turns out to be. This fun-loving celebration of drunkenness proves to be an even more sobering cautionary tale than some of the most serious addiction and recovery memoirs. And the fact that none could entirely stop drinking, even when it became a life-or-death medical necessity, makes it that much sadder. Funny as it is, the book’s boisterous beginning gives way to grimly premature states of illness and dotage, with Mr. Harris as the member of the foursome most aware of his behavior’s high price. “I didn’t even have the joy of remembering my own exploits,” he said, after realizing that alcohol had wiped out much of his memory.
Today I am making huge sagging peppermint ice-cream cakes for a Christmas party given from small children from disadvantaged communities. Outside, a heat wave is building like a solid wall of fire. Given the rate that the ice cream melts, this is going to be a very messy and sticky party, but such fun! I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!
And a dear friend who is usually cynical and fond of throwing cold water on my enthusiasms and faith in humankind has just sent me an email in which he surprisingly says: Let’s remember the thanks in Thanksgiving. How touching and unexpected.