Wednesday, October 08, 2014

A Tennessee Williams anecdote, co-starring John F. Kennedy & featuring Gore Vidal. Or: Three Men and a Gun Part II

From Gore Vidal's Palimpsest (1995)


"When Jackie [Kennedy] heard that we were in Miami, she asked us up to Palm Beach for lunch. The Bird [Tennessee Williams] had no idea who they were but took my word for it that Jack was running for president. We arrived an hour late. Jack was firing a rifle at a target on the lawn. He was not a very good shot; and I was as bad as he. The Bird casually took the rifle from him and shot three bull's-eyes, 'Using only my blind-eye,' he cackled.




"Jack knew exactly how to flatter authors. Always say you admire their least successful work. He praised Summer and Smoke, and the Bird began to find him presidential. He also found him sexually attractive.

'Look at that ass,' he said thoughtfully as Jack led us into the damp, moldy-smelling house.

'You can't cruise our next president.' I was stern.

'Don't be ridiculous. The American people will never elect those two. They're far too attractive.'

[...]

As we left, I told Jack that the Bird had found his ass attractive.

'That's very exciting.' Jack grinned."



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