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Sheerly Avni has an interview with Gore Vidal up on in which the American author discusses Oscar-nominated films Brokeback Mountain and Capote (both of which he approves of, saying of the latter, “The movie is quite brave about showing somebody who did not have any redeeming characteristics, nor did they pretend he had”). Of Capote himself, Vidal has some choice memories:

Oh, Capote. [Sighs.] I spent half a century trying to avoid him, in life, and now suddenly I’m surrounded by him.

He was a pathological liar. He couldn’t tell the truth about anything, and he’d make it up as he went along. He always wore dark glasses, and his eyes would drop behind the dark glasses, and he would seem to be looking down at his nose, and then as he got more and more frenzied—the lies really very frenzied, they were orgasmic—you would start to see the eyes begin to roll up to see if you’d fallen for what he was saying.

And it was always about famous people, some he’d barely heard of before. I remember he told me once “I’m the American Proust.”

So I said, “So who’s your Mme Verdurin?”


He had not heard of one of Proust’s principal characters. He was confidently illiterate. It’s highly suitable that he would become iconic, because he didn’t know anything, and never told the truth. Doesn’t he fit in the age of Bush?

(Thanks to Movie City News for the link.)

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