A Man is a Shining Psychedelic Optimist

I’ve been interested in Walter Kirn since I found out he spoke at Wordsmithy in Moscow. Stumbled across his blog recently and got a kick out of his bio. Writing a bio that’s actually fun to read is one of my ambitions in life. Like this one.

I live in Montana and California but go to NYC a lot. That big picture is my wife. The little one is me when I was her age. I have kids. I grew up in a town of 500 where a noon siren sounded every day so people who worked outside knew what time it was. The town of 7,000 where I live now is pretty bombed out from the recession. The movie Up in the Air is based on my novel. George Clooney played me. He could have stolen my girlfriend and showed signs that he knew it, but he didn’t. I think that indicates class. In both of them. The movie Thumbsucker is based on my novel. Of all the H’wood people I’ve met, my favorite is R.Downey Jr., a shining psychedelic optimist. I saw Samuel Beckett on the street once in Edinburgh wearing a long navy blue wool coat. It was like seeing a great British sailed frigate from the Empire days come knifing up a little river, that shocking, that beautiful. I also met, unexpectedly, Jorge Luis Borges once, long after I thought he was dead. It was 1985. It was like meeting Kafka. He recited a speech from King Lear (in English) and then explained how it might be improved.

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