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Books / Fatwah / September 16, 2010

amis hitchens smoking

“C’mon cancer, I dare you to knock this sneer off my face.”

Since writing my last piece on Hitchens (“How Christopher Hitchens Robbed Hunter S. Thompson’s Grave”), I’ve finally found a widow smart enough to give Blitcons a massive up-yours. At around the same time Hitchens’ character assassination of Gore Vidal hit American newsstands, retired BBC news anchor Anna Ford wrote a letter to The Guardian accusing him and Amis of smoking over the hospital bed of her dying husband, Mark Boxer.

According to Ford, not only did the two Blitcons fill his room with enough carbon monoxide to de-chav an entire council estate, but they “exhausted” the poor moribund by overstaying their welcome. Their visit, apparently, was “not borne just of affection” but also to kill time before their next flight left at Heathrow.

Hitchens’ response is an unintentionally funny piece of bathos. Not even for his “beloved Mark” will he bow to the knavish vituperation of plain and respectful English:

I did indeed accompany Martin Amis on one of the (several) bedside visits he made during Mark Boxer’s last illness, and can be quite certain that he abstained from smoking (Letters, 20 February). Conceivably it was I who was the offender, though even in 1988 that could not possibly have been without permission. The same goes for the mean innuendo that any welcome was outstayed (which is in itself incompatible with the hurtful allegation of a swift and heartless “drop-by”): there were persons attending who would have anticipated and cut short any such thing. These lazy but suggestive errors to one side, it is both ungenerous and untrue to doubt, let alone to deny, that the least lachrymose of my friends was more than once overcome with grief at Mark’s early death. He told me that after his final call – which was just before he left for America and when Mark had whispered “goodbye” to him – he sat in his car unable to drive away for weeping. (His departure for Heathrow, if it matters, was on the following day.) We both shed further tears when our beloved Mark died not long afterwards.

Hitchens has a rare gift: being so loathsome that, even if his version of events were completely true, you’d still wish his cancer would evolve into a human form of Devil facial tumour disease. “Unable to drive away for weeping”? I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: when someone mourns a “friend” with writing as purple as a dish of HeLa cells, they’re talentless at best and at worst, sociopathic. You’ll notice Hitchens doesn’t even own up to being the smoker. He’s “quite certain” it wasn’t Amis, but as for himself, it’s only a maybe.

hitchens serge gainsbourg exiled onlineHitchens mugs another original talent

Of course, it’s perfect justice that he’d die from smoking. Cigarettes, after prose, were always the other great Blitcon pretension. The poses that Hitchens and Amis strike while drawing back are a natural extension of their prose style, lots of fake hustle wrapped around a squishy Etonian centre. As the picture above shows, Hitchens can’t even light up without plagiarising Serge Gainsbourg.

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32 Comments

Add your own

  • 1. rick  |  September 16th, 2010 at 3:56 pm

    Hitchens is one of about two people that I’m aware of whose deaths make me laugh each and every morning. The other people whose death makes me laugh is “them.”

  • 2. Steve Mckie  |  September 16th, 2010 at 3:58 pm

    on….”Hitchens has a rare gift: being so loathsome that, even if his version of events were completely true, you’d still wish his cancer would evolve into a human form of Devil facial tumour disease”.

    Really low. Sad and very grave. Bad news.

    Get well Hitchens.

  • 3. Shaun Roach  |  September 16th, 2010 at 7:00 pm

    What is a Blitcon?

  • 4. Connors  |  September 17th, 2010 at 3:48 am

    I saw this headline and thought Hitchens was finally dead. You raised my hopes, only to crush them. Here’s to rooting for Hitchens’ immediate death…

  • 5. empire in decline  |  September 17th, 2010 at 4:05 am

    As was kind of mentioned in the comments for the other Hitchen’s article he also thought of himself as a modern day George Orwell stemming the tide of leftist stupidity with the modern day equivalent of Stalin’s apologists of course being apologists for “Islamo-fascism”.

    One of the groups he called fascist were the Shiites, you know, the people who weren’t even practicing the same version of Islam as the people who attacked on 9/11, the people who were in Saddam’s mass graves, rape rooms and torture chambers.

    Here’s a quote from George Orwell’s Homage to Catalonia to keep in mind when thinking of how happy Christopher Hitchens was when thinking about all those Shiite kids the United States military slaughtered:

    “This, then, was what they were saying about us: we were Trotskyists, Fascists, traitors, murderers, cowards, spies, and so forth. I admit it was not pleasant, especially when one thought of some of the people who were responsible for it. It is not a nice thing to see a Spanish boy of fifteen carried down the line on a stretcher, with a dazed white face looking out from among the blankets, and to think of the sleek persons in London and Paris who are writing pamphlets to prove that this boy is a Fascist in disguise. One of the most horrible features of war is that all the war-propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not fighting.”

    He probably read Orwell’s Notes on Nationalism and thought the following point about Anglophobia was presciently describing those who today are called “anti-American”: “English left-wing intellectuals did not, of course, actually want the Germans or Japanese to win the war, but many of them could not help getting a certain kick out of seeing their own country humiliated, and wanted to feel that the final victory would be due to Russia, or perhaps America, and not to Britain. In foreign politics many intellectuals follow the principle that any faction backed by Britain must be in the wrong.”

    The main point Christopher Hitchens never got was that the idea of being against the Iraqi invasion had nothing to do with gleefully watching America lose but that the people fighting from the slums and gutters of Baghdad were the same as those who fought from the slums and gutters of Barcelona. It never mattered whether they were anarchists or socialists just like it didn’t matter that the people killed in Iraq were Shiites or Sunnis. All that mattered was an injustice was committed against people who never deserved it.

    What a piece of shit he was for not acknowledging something so simple. He, like most people, knew the truth, he just didn’t care.

  • 6. wellclosed  |  September 17th, 2010 at 4:07 am

    Ween’s song “Mr Richard Smoker” has for me always contained an image of the hitcher similar those contained above.

  • 7. Whooly  |  September 17th, 2010 at 11:03 am

    @ Shaun

    Blitcon = “British Literary Conservative”

  • 8. wengler  |  September 18th, 2010 at 12:01 am

    Ah, ol’ Hitch coulda been a martyr had that band of Nazi Lebanese ruffians bootstomped him all across Beirut. Instead the pasty drunk is just waiting around for inevitability to take him. Here’s to the hundreds of thousands of dead you helped kill Hitch, may you meet some of them where you’re going.

  • 9. Ragno  |  September 19th, 2010 at 10:13 am

    I get it, I think: Hitchens is an intellectual arriviste, a pompous tool, a self-obsessed shit, and a poofy fag. I mean, listen to him talk, for God’s sake: hello sailor!

    Only one problem: anyone who’d close this sort of hit-piece with an admiring reference to Serge Gainsbourg clearly takes it up the ass.

  • 10. good 'ol johnny  |  September 20th, 2010 at 8:26 am

    This should have been a video blog on youtube instead of an eXiled article.

  • 11. Spanky  |  September 21st, 2010 at 8:04 am

    Ragno seems to have issues about taking it in the ass. One can only wonder.

    Incidentally, Hitch was openly bi until, as he puts it, lost his looks and attained a form only women would sleep with.

    Professor Boozy is easy to hate for his war apologism, but he redeemed himself somewhat with his more recent attacks on religion. An easy target, to be sure, but too few other well-known folks are willing to take that stand.

  • 12. Adrian Newey  |  September 21st, 2010 at 2:20 pm

    Not as classy as the last piece, but still good. Please consider some sort of “Hitchens retrospective – life and times of a douchebag” as a next article. For the kids, you know.

  • 13. terry  |  September 24th, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    You are a vile human being.

  • 14. Anti-Theist  |  September 26th, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    You’re a bunch of sick bastards, Hitchens is a great man and he will be sadly missed. You should all be deeply ashamed of yourselves, you bunch of self righteous, flat Earthers.

  • 15. Will  |  September 28th, 2010 at 10:31 am

    I don’t have much love for Hitchens’s views on most things, but this guy should leave the hater work to Dolan. Hitchens committed plagiarism by having his picture taking while smoking? Sorry, but these Glazov articles are pretty stupid.

  • 16. Leon Breton  |  October 17th, 2010 at 2:27 pm

    This is weak left wing drivel. Completely frivolous. It’s no wonder the person who wrote this is a nobody, Hitchens could have critiqued himself with ten times the intellectual integrity and journalistic prowess. This guy has nothing on Hitchens so he resorts to name calling. The only thing in this piece that has “outstayed it’s welcome” is Gore Vidal’s conspiracy theories and his suck-up apologists like Ramon Glazov.
    Pitiful stuff.

  • 17. HEATHENATHEIST  |  October 30th, 2010 at 8:00 am

    Hitchens haters. Always so vile. Funny thing is, the Hitch-Hater who wrote this and his mindless constituents, are likely all to claim themselves good christians. And this is how they feel and behave.
    Hitchens’ unapologetic exposure of this type of fraud is exactly why the writer and some of the those who’ve commented on here have such hatred for the man. Yes, I am a dumbshit who just called eXiled writer-gods “good christians” because they are a bunch of Jews and serial sinners who screw women out of wedlock and force them to have abortions. Am I being ironic, I don’t know.

  • 18. Freebird  |  November 11th, 2010 at 1:19 am

    I like Christopher Hitchins , he makes a lot of sense but I can understand why those who believe in God might find him unpleasant…..it is a sensitive issue.

    Some of his appetites may have given his body a hard time , assuming that he desired a long life…but he will have known this and that it is a price that might have to be paid. A few minor vices are a small price to pay for his insightful intelligence , good humour and the solace he has brought to the many.

    I salute him and I too will cry when it is his turn to depart.

  • 19. Cameron  |  November 13th, 2010 at 10:21 am

    Wow, I was getting more and more outraged as I read this, and was preparing to leave a very angry comment, but then I look up some details regarding this website and discovered that these guys are my fucking heroes, and I’m just a worm by comparison.
    Now I’m filled with self-pity instead of just envy for the gods responsible for this. Also, I am a miserable failure of a journalist. Vanity Fair never wrote a thing about me, and all I do is post anonymous blog comments. Pathetic.

  • 20. Freebird  |  November 16th, 2010 at 12:11 am

    So good I had to say it twice( 2 ).

    I like Christopher Hitchins , he makes a lot of sense but I can understand why those who believe in God might find him unpleasant…..it is a sensitive issue.

    Some of his appetites may have given his body a hard time , assuming that he desired a long life…but he will have known this and that it is a price that might have to be paid. A few minor vices are a small price to pay for his insightful intelligence , good humour and the solace he has brought to the many.

    I salute him and I too will cry when it is his turn to depart.

  • 21. Al  |  November 26th, 2010 at 8:35 am

    “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ”
    Mohandas Gandhi

  • 22. PeroMak  |  November 30th, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Such a misplaced and subjective article. Failed attempt to disclose Hitch’s personality and subsequently his academic locus. This interpretation reminds me of Adolf’s Nietzsche….

  • 23. Bruce  |  March 30th, 2011 at 2:42 pm

    Eviscerating Hitchens in his own style. Poetic justice or pathetic mimicry? Can’t think up your own style? At least Hitch is an original. He would probably approve of this article since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Hitch lives, god never did.

    By the way, yes, it’s true, I do shine his boots for him. God I love shining his boots!

  • 24. melyssa  |  April 11th, 2011 at 1:49 pm

    wow- I just feel so bad for all of you. You too can gain in this life and the next.Seek wisdom and understanding and wear them around your neck. Drink from the Living Water, never to tirst again…

  • 25. Joseph Barrington  |  April 14th, 2011 at 5:33 am

    WAAAAHHHHHH! THIS HURT ME! WAAAHHHHhHHH!!!

  • 26. Virginia Melloth  |  April 24th, 2011 at 1:56 pm

    Fuck! He’s not dead yet? I’m an atheist and I still hate that war mongering fuck. Die! Die! Die! you asshole!

  • 27. oneoflokis  |  May 26th, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    Now: In how many languages do any of you know a version of this saying? “Who digs traps for others, should mind that he does not fall in them himself”?! I know versions in at least two. This is aimed at the author of this piece and his groupies, btw, as I know of no instance where Hitchens has ever wished cancer on anyone, Islamist etc, or not..

    This site would be good if it wasn’t full of vindictive crap. Well I suppose it remains to me as the practising neopagan on here to endeavour to be more humane than the false Christians and the rabid atheists alike. Here’s what I hope happens: (see, a curse is a serious thing, stupids, whether or not you go by the Wiccan Rede! It’s a last-ditch thing and the most powerful are dying curses.. Which is why I would beware the last utterances of a dying man!) No: *I* hope that Mr Hitchens manages to find a treatment that cures him, or at least promotes remission,whether high-tech or alternative.They’re discovering new cancer treatments all the time so it’s not impossible.

  • 28. oneoflokis  |  May 26th, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    Well: we’re nearly half-way through 2011 now; so let’s see.. I’ve seen (on TV) operations in China where people have had more than half their oesophagus out, and they survived, so let’s see.. I’ve seen a recent cbn.ca news article which claims he is dying of cancer: I have seen no statement by him which states this. Incidentally: it’s not just tobacco-smoking that could lead to such a condition: persistent drinking,0particularly of spirits, is known to be carcinogenic and doesn’t do your stomach or alimentary tract any favours at all. Trust you Americans with your current tobacco near-prohibition to emphasise merely that. Shows you what you know: not much!

    If I were in his shoes, I would persist with that radiotherapy: and also buy every anti-cancer supplement going, seeing as money is presumably no object!

    The writers on this site may hate him; I was always more coolly neutral; but there are obviously plenty of people reviewing on Amazon who admire him as a writer.. Why do you wish all this disease on him?

  • 29. oneoflokis  |  May 27th, 2011 at 4:30 am

    Oh. And he might want to stop smoking and cut out drinking. My own father at the end of his 40s was going to have more than half of his stomach cut out. (Extensive bleeding ulcers, apparently, not cancer. They wouldn’t know for decades you can treat it with antibiotics so apparently that was the only option.) Dad didn’t fancy it. At the time he drank, smoked cigars, and was going through a messy divorce from his first wife. Divorce over, he saw the light, gave up all the emotional props (which the docs would have told him to anyway) AND got hold of some naturopathic diet sheets. (Still have a couple: lots of steamed white fish and milk puddings.) 6-12 months later, ulcers gone, no operation needed. He went on to his second marriage, his third child (me), and lived till he was 74 1/2. Quite a successful mid-life turn-around. If only blokes knew that they could do that, that their health would improve if they got rid of the toxins, and that the ones with problems don’t have to all end up like George Best!

  • 30. Joe Bigliogo  |  November 21st, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    It seems there is no limit to the depth of depravity some people will sink to under the protected anonymity of the web blogging.

  • 31. Nolan  |  December 15th, 2011 at 10:42 pm

    And the bastard is finally dead.

    Let me be the first to say good riddance.

  • 32. Tony  |  January 25th, 2012 at 2:36 am

    I went to junior sockpuppet academy, and this pathetic bottom troll comment is all I have to show for it???

    Hitchens may have taken a controversial stand on Iraq – personally I disagree with him, and point taken about his intentional misreading of Orwell – but there is much, much more to the man than his opinions on that subject. As many others more erudite than me have noted, he was a brilliant essayist, polemicist and his breadth and depth of knowledge of history was mind-blowingly vast. Whether you agree with him on specific issues or not, I will do myself a favour of going back and reviewing my notes from my favorite class: “How to Troll Websites, While Making Money & Having Fun”…


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