Monday, January 05, 2009

I Am the Phoenix

That is to say for the first time in a week I'm feeling quite chipper (a word that's fallen out of favor since that scene near the end of Fargo). As I told E. by phone, I look around the house and I see ... ruin. That is to say, things are a bit of a mess.

Thirty years ago -- god; no! really? -- I did an interview with Don Conroy, Pat Conroy's dad, whom Pat had used as the model for the title character in Pat's novel "The Great Santini." The novel presented Don Conroy as pretty much a brutal blowhard, but the novel was well received and a movie was being made based on the book, and that's why I did the interview to appear in Atlanta Magazine, where I was working at the time. Conroy and his dad has this complex love-hate relationship, but one thing was true: Don Conroy loved the attention, even if it meant he had to undercut his son's portrait of him.

But that undercutting tended to reinforce the accuracy of the portrait.

It was a lovely piece of writing, and someday I may scan it and put it online. Old Conroy was living in a high rise apartment complex on Peachtree St. -- the big one; not one of the subsidiary Peachtree circles, inlets, vistas, etc. His apartment was a mess, and in the lead to my story I said something like, "This is either a bachelor's heaven or a bachelor's hell."

What goes around comes around. Yesterday I described it. Today I live it.
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