Saturday, October 10, 2020

Bill Styron | ah'm goin' home to grow pee-nuts

Peter Matthiessen in Nelson W. Aldrich, Jr, ed., George, Being George: George Plimpton’s Life. New York: Random House, 2008, p. 89—

[In 1952 American novelist] Bill Styron showed up on the dingy fourth-floor landing of our apartment [in Paris] at 14, rue Perceval, with no French and a thick Tidewater accent…Patsy and I gave him a drink, and then took him to…a little Breton café…[During dinner] We were all…sloshing up a good deal of rough vin de table, and at a certain point, overcome by dire homesickness, he fell face forward into his platter and lay lachrymose amongst the oysters, uttering the immortal Styronian words: "Ah ain' got no mo ree-sistance to change than a snow-flake." But by this time, we were were already fond of this well-read, humorous, and very intelligent man. We became fast friends on that first evening and from that time on.

Roy R. Behrens, rice bowl collage (detail), c1992