pandemo (pandemo) wrote,
pandemo
pandemo

from The Hostage - Brendan Behan

http://pandemo.livejournal.com/358539.html

from The Hostage

Never throw stones at your mother;
You'll be sorry for it when she's dead;
Never throw stones at your mother;
Throw bricks at your father instead.

I'd never heard of him before, but today, on Dad's birthday, Garrison Keillor's Writer's Almanac featured him, among others.  Brendan Behan, born in Dublin in 1923, whose father took part in the Irish rebellion of the early 20's.  His father was in prison when the boy was born.  By the time he was 16, he was being sent on missions to bomb British targets.  While in prison, he began to write.  His first play was The Quare Fellow, then the novel Borstal Boy and The Hostage.

I can't imagine a childhood that violent, but readily understand that many in our world can't imagine anything else.

footnote:  He died at age 41, an alcoholic. When writing his obituary, the critic Renee McCall said of Behan: Too young to die: too drunk to live.

When I saw a notice which said, "Drink Canada Dry", I got started at once.

I am a drinker with writing problems.

New York is my Lourdes, where I go for spiritual refreshment... a place where you're least likely to be bitten by a wild goat.

I have a total irreverence for anything connected with society except that which makes the roads safer, the beer stronger, the food cheaper and the old men and old women warmer in the winter and happier in the summer.

When I came back to Dublin, I was courtmartialed in my absence and sentenced to death in my absence, so I said they could shoot me in my absence.

If it was raining soup, the Irish would go out with forks.

 (line drawing of a drunk Brendan Behan toasting a nun, three shot glasses in front of him, bottle in hand) Ah, bless you, Sister, may all your sons be bishops.

Critics are like eunuchs in a harem; they know how it's done, they've seen it done every day, but they're unable to do it themselves.

There is no such thing as bad publicity except your own obituary.
Tags: birthday, quotation
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