MORTIMER had his photograph taken in his dress suit.
April 20, 2017 11:38 AM   Subscribe

If the hostess asks him to have a chair Freddie comes right back at her with "No, thanks; we have chairs at home." If the host offers him a cigar he will say just like a flash, "What's the matter with it?" If one of the men borrows a cigarette and a light from him Freddie will say in that dry voice of his, "Do you want the coupons too?" Of course his wit is pretty fairly caustic, but no one ever seems to take offense at it. I suppose there is everything in the way he says things.
"Men I'm Not Married To", Dorothy Parker, 1922

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(Franklin P. Adams' "Women I'm Not Married To," which ran with Parker's piece is included as well)
posted by griphus (15 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
I strongly recommending reading this in Jennifer Jason Leigh's voice.
posted by The Tensor at 12:49 PM on April 20, 2017 [4 favorites]

This is a really great mix of scathing and also oddly affectionate at times. Makes me realize I'd like to have known Parker but am relieved not to have had a chance to show up on her blog.

I'll have to go to the OCR version for Adams' half since i'm unwilling to read it upside down and Google can't be arsed to rotate the pages.
posted by cortex at 12:56 PM on April 20, 2017 [4 favorites]

I haven't read this in a month of Sundays. Thanks!
posted by The Underpants Monster at 12:56 PM on April 20, 2017 also has a PDF scan of a different edition of the book than Google Books but for some reason I can't get their PDF viewer to load
posted by griphus at 1:29 PM on April 20, 2017

Lloyd wears washable neckties

Oh snaaaaaap
posted by ZaphodB at 1:55 PM on April 20, 2017 [4 favorites]

Many of my achievements and many of my sorrows in life have been caused by my twenty-odd years' worth of attempts to imitate Dorothy Parker. It's hard to believe that some of her most caustic work is almost a hundred years old. I was just rereading "An Apartment House Anthology" not long ago, which you'll enjoy if you liked the above.
posted by Countess Elena at 2:41 PM on April 20, 2017 [3 favorites]

Ugh Henry. That guy is the worst.
posted by limeonaire at 4:13 PM on April 20, 2017

Charlie now would be a weed guy, of course.
posted by atoxyl at 4:59 PM on April 20, 2017 [5 favorites]

MetaFilter: -- more fun than a goat
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:53 PM on April 20, 2017 [1 favorite]

Hey now
posted by ActingTheGoat at 6:04 PM on April 20, 2017 [6 favorites]

That copyright notice is, uh, just:
Copyright, 1922, by
Doubleday, Page & Company
All rights reserved, including that of
translation into foreign languages,
including the Scandinavian
What is going on here precisely, 1922
posted by phooky at 7:08 PM on April 20, 2017 [5 favorites]

"And the beauty of it is that he is not a mere theorist, as a joker; practical--that's Freddie all over."

"But don't let yourself get carried away with success and attempt to branch out into other topics. For you will lose Charlie in a minute if you try it.

But that, now I think of it, would probably be the very idea you would have in mind."

Thank you, griphus, for a wonderful diversion from 2017, and a reminder that I love, love, love, love, love, love, love DP. I hadn't read this one before....I had to pull my copy of The Portable Dorothy Parker (this story was not included in it) off of my bookshelf and fondle it, then open it and skim its pages, remembering favorite poems and book reviews and her reviews of the theatre, and Big Blonde and, well, THANK YOU!!!
posted by W Grant at 8:58 PM on April 20, 2017 [2 favorites]

I finished re-reading my portable Parker a while back and I'm always struck by how modern and casual she sounds. While also being so clearly worked over and tinkered with in detail. It's so polished and light that it feels like nothing at all, which makes hurt even more when the knife goes in. It's such a masterful command of tone that even her reviews of boring books no one has read feel like perfectly turned out short comedy pieces.
posted by The Whelk at 9:18 PM on April 20, 2017 [5 favorites]

including the Scandinavian

Looks like the only resource I can easily find answering this question is a radio program with no transcript, so someone knows the answer to this, but not me.
posted by blnkfrnk at 7:36 AM on April 21, 2017

I found that radio clip too-- they explain that "including the Scandinavian" because a sort of slang phrase because it widely recognized as part of copyright notices for a few decades, but not, maddeningly, why. Apparently Scandinavian nations were not signatories to some early 20th-c. copyright treaties of some sort?
posted by phooky at 12:36 PM on April 21, 2017

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