Quote For The Weekend (Superbowl Edition)

A writer and his cat at work

1. In modern war…you will die like a dog for no good reason.

2. Man is not made for defeat.

—Ernest Hemingway

I regret not going into Hemingway’s house when I was in Key West. Instead I stood out on the sidewalk, by the pretty brick wall, a gazing idiot in her little sundress and flipflops. I felt shy, as if he was alive and in the house, disgusted by me ogling the arching windows and shade scattering palms. I was in shock that he had lived in the cheerful tropics. The manly man, safari man, war hero prolific in a precious city infested with twinkle lights and laughter? I had a drink in Captain Tony’s/Sloppy Joe’s (not a Teacher’s and soda or a Papa Dobles, another regret)–of course I did–searching, as any Hemingway fanatic will when visiting ‘his’ town. I brooded over my Amstel Light, irked by the happy people everywhere I looked. Why the hell didn’t I go in the house? I thought, wanting things. I vowed to return to 907 Whitehead Street, even though snooping through the homes of famous dead people I admire gives me not answers, not insight into idols and legends, but the creeps.

Papa? Is that you?

But then I was overcome by the white beaches and fantastic snorkeling, bewitched by the sunsets viewed from the bricks of Mallory Square. I laughed, even under water. I ate conch fritters with a huge smile on my sunburned face. I had one of the best meals of my life at Louie’s Backyard. I purchased twinkle lights and packed them reverently in my suitcase. I did not return to the Hemingway Home And Museum. I got it. Key West is magical, or as Papa himself said: “It’s the best place I’ve ever been anytime, anywhere, flowers, tamarind trees, guava trees, coconut palms…Got tight last night on absinthe and did knife tricks.”

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About PB Rippey

Writer, wife, mother, fortunate.
This entry was posted in Fiction, Quotes, Writer quotes, Writer's Angst, Writing, WTF and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Quote For The Weekend (Superbowl Edition)

  1. Miss B. says:

    “Got tight last night on Absinthe and did knife tricks” has to be one of the best lines ever! I am stealing it.
    I like the visual of you laughing under water – happy bubbles.

    • PB Rippey says:

      Yes, it is a good line, isn’t it? One of these days I will try a Papa Dobles. The Key West version, not the Cuban as I doubt I’ll be going to Havana any time soon…

  2. Beth Hull says:

    When I was in Key West, I didn’t know who Hemingway was. If I had, I wonder if I would have wandered into his house. It does seem a bit creepy.
    I certainly wasn’t old enough to order myself a drink. At least, not legally. (I think I was 14.)
    The Super Bowl is this weekend?

    • PB Rippey says:

      Ha! Yes, this weekend. I only know because my husband is going to watch it and requested my homemade nachos. And then I found out Madonna is performing at half-time. That I shall not miss. The next time I visit Key West I will be sure to go on in that house. I guess they perform weddings there now. Isn’t that going a little too far?

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