Wednesday, May 16, 2018

RIP Tom Wolfe, age 88

Wolfe was hailed in his time for his nearly electric prose, his long paragraphs filled with nothing but adjectives and a satiric eye at Society.  He nailed it nearly every time as far as good writing and controversy were concerned.

In addition to being a gifted linguist (in his adjective strings) he coined phrases that were absolutely de riguer in their day - remember ...
The Me Decade
Radical Chic (used more on the East Coast than West)
The Right Stuff - I think he might have lifted this one from old pilots.
Social X-rays - the aged trophy wives of New York, all of whom looked youthful and bright due to excessive use of Botox or face lifts.  He pointed out that they really aren't fooling anyone by reminding his audience to look at the back of their hands - age and liver spots.
Master of the Universe came out when the market and the dot.coms were going nuts.

Wolfe believed early in the logo presentation of a writer.  His habitual garb, visible across the busiest street in Manhattan, was a white "ice cream suit" with vest, striped shirt and spats with a straw fedora on top.  Once asked what he would call this habit/style he responded, "Neo-pretentious."  That alone would rank him tops with me.  Neo-pretentious.  I love it!

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