Happy birthday, Papa Hemingway! Many outlets are celebrating the famously concise and manly writer with tributes to his bon mots, but we thought we’d do something a little more appropriate for the 24/7 online news cycle — so we asked the beloved author to weigh in on a few of the most thinkpiece-worthy headlines of the moment. He obliged, being conveniently long dead, and therefore in the public domain.
As you read these responses, just imagine sidling up to the white-bearded writer at a bar in Key West and chatting with him — bracingly — about the following topics.
On the new photos of His Royal Highness Prince George and Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte:
To be a successful father… there’s one absolute rule: when you have a kid, don’t look at it for the first two years.
You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another.
Personal columnists… are jackals and no jackal has been known to live on grass once he had learned about meat — no matter who killed the meat for him.
God knows, people who are paid to have attitudes toward things, professional critics, make me sick; camp-following eunuchs of literature. They won’t even whore. They’re all virtuous and sterile. And how well meaning and high minded. But they’re all camp-followers.
On the fuss surrounding Fifty Shades of Grey and mommy porn:
If you can’t say fornicate can you say copulate or if not that can you say co-habit? If not that would have to say consummate I suppose. Use your own good taste and judgment.
On the 16-person-strong, and growing, Republican primary presidential candidate field, which includes Donald Trump:
We in America should see that no man is ever given, no matter how gradually or how noble and excellent the man, the power to put this country into a war which is now being prepared and brought closer each day with all the pre-meditation of a long planned murder. For when you give power to an executive you do not know who will be filling that position when the time of crisis comes.
But don’t try to find an untroublesome woman. She will dull out on you.
On Woody Allen’s most recent endeavors as a filmmaker:
The rich were dull and they drank too much or they played too much backgammon. They were dull and they were repetitious.
On recent celebrity divorces:
Only one marriage I regret. I remember after I got that marriage license I went across from the license bureau to a bar for a drink. The bartender said, “What will you have, sir?” And I said, “A glass of hemlock.”
On life as a cognizant citizen of the world in 2015:
Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know.