Friday, December 16, 2011
A Toast to Christopher Hitchens
Christopher Hitchens was also the type of public figure I tricked myself into thinking I could be friends with, given half the chance. In interviews, as well as on the page, he always seemed so affable and wry and approachable despite having a mind that seemed to have a fully-realized and complicated position on, and I'm not exaggerating here, everything. I even picked up the pretty obnoxious habit of thinking of and referring to him as "Hitch," like we were drinking buddies. We weren't, though, and I didn't know the man whose body gave out last night. I'm sorry for his friends who did, and I'm sorry for the rest of us that his body of work has given out as well. I feel like in mourning him, I'm also mourning all the essays and books he didn't get to write. It doesn't make much sense, considering his dire diagnosis and the frank manner in which he spoke about it, how surprised I am that he's gone--I guess I thought because his writing was so powerful, it wouldn't, couldn't, just stop.
I'm going to have a bourbon for Hitch tonight, and read his new collection of essays, and deeply wish it wasn't his last.