There’s a new book out called Mortality, mostly written by Christopher Hitchens during his battle with cancer. It wasn’t finished, so the last chapter contains a bunch of fragments and notations that he left behind. I’ve preordered the Kindle version, but the printed version is already available. A few gems were printed in Slate. My favorite:
Now so many tributes that it also seems that rumors of my LIFE have also been greatly exaggerated. Lived to see most of what’s going to be written about me: this too is exhilarating but hits diminishing returns when I realize how soon it, too, will be “background.”
This is not the only instance in which he appears to want to take himself down off the pedestal, a place that clearly made him uncomfortable:
Brave? Hah! Save it for a fight you can’t run away from.
And this, which betrays his unending restlessness:
Lost fourteen pounds without trying. Thin at last. But don’t feel lighter because walking to the fridge is like a forced march. Then again, the vicious psoriasis/excema pustules that no doctor could treat have gone, too. This must be some impressive toxin I’m taking. And a mercy for sleep purposes…but all the sleep-aids and blissful dozes seem somehow a waste of life—there’s plenty of future time in which to be unconscious.
Looking forward to reading this whole book.