Thursday, July 10, 2003

The Slow, Sad Demise of The Hitch; Part XXXVIII

No, this one isn't written by Hitchens, so you're spared that at least. It's one of Hitch's friends and proteges, bewildered by his behavior and bemoaning the polemicist he has become in terms I relate to. Rather than mock his drinking habit and slovenly appearance like some other less classy adversaries, this writer describes an experience that mirrors my own pretty closely--reading him with great relish and admiration, and then watching in dismay as he descends into uncomplicated and even hypocritical thought.

I can barely read him anymore. His pieces in the Brit tabloid The Mirror and in Slate are a mishmash of imperial justifications and plain bombast; the old elegant style is dead. His TV appearances show a smug, nasty scold with little tolerance for those who disagree with him.

He also coyly places their conversation in Hitch's "fave D.C. pub just down the street from his spacious apartment." I've already got the apartment stalked. And shockingly, I can't seem to think of his area bars. I think this calls for a field trip. What in God's name would I say to the Hitch if I met him? "Buy you a drink?" "Please stop staring at my breasts?"


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