Celebrity Deathmatch: Gabriel García Márquez and Mario Vargas Llosa
March 17, 2007 8:23 PM   Subscribe

The cause of the famous feud between Gabriel García Márquez and Mario Vargas Llosa has finally been revealed. A photograph, taken right after Llosa punched Márquez has even been published. It's got it all, violence, Swedish stewardesses and a piece of steak used as band-aid! Literary feuds don't get much better than this!
posted by Kattullus (21 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
marquez floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee.
posted by spiderwire at 8:25 PM on March 17, 2007

Thanks, that was really fun to read about. Why do I suspect most feuds happen because of women and wounded egos?
posted by Staggering Jack at 8:33 PM on March 17, 2007

Nice post. I love how he's grinning like mad after getting punched.
posted by serazin at 8:34 PM on March 17, 2007

Now*that's* how to hold a grudge. I'm impressed.
posted by Banky_Edwards at 8:36 PM on March 17, 2007

Haw. But alas for the lame-itude of the Independent's spinmeisters. Otherwise, great tale! Swedish stewardesses! Fisticuffs! Paging tkchrist!
posted by mwhybark at 8:40 PM on March 17, 2007

So which one was the Nazi and/or pedophile? Has the FBI expressed an opinion?
posted by davy at 8:44 PM on March 17, 2007

My cousin Kenneth won the Nobel Prize in physics the same year that Marquez won for literature. My grandmother attended the prize ceremonies in Stockholm and met Marquez, and despite her not knowing a word of Spanish, she described him as a pompous, stuck-up jerk.

This story has no larger point.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 9:28 PM on March 17, 2007

This story has no larger point.

i learned that your family is very smart and that they are good judges of character.
posted by spiderwire at 9:51 PM on March 17, 2007

Wow. "My wife says you should divorce my friend. Fancy a screw?"
posted by Firas at 10:46 PM on March 17, 2007

Interesting story, but that Independent article is fucking annoying. It took a lot of willpower to continue reading after this nugget in the first paragraph: "(Indeed, who was Shakespeare: Marlow, Bacon, de Vere or one of the rest?)"
posted by papakwanz at 10:59 PM on March 17, 2007

Great stuff—thanks for the post!

I found this bit from the article very odd: "In a touch of magic realism, a friend actually did apply a steak from a nearby butcher's to the black eye." WTF? Did the writer think the steak thing was a fairy tale? Yes, people actually do that, right here in the real world.
posted by languagehat at 6:13 AM on March 18, 2007

Cool post!
posted by synaesthetichaze at 8:03 AM on March 18, 2007

languagehat: yeah, that was another moment where I was very irritated with the reporter. It seemed to rely on the Spanish word for black eye translating literally as "mulberry" and the author thinking "wow, steak on mulberry, how fantastical!"
posted by papakwanz at 9:03 AM on March 18, 2007

WTF? Did the writer think the steak thing was a fairy tale?

No, magical realism.
posted by Smart Dalek at 9:25 AM on March 18, 2007

No, magical realism.

Golly, thanks! I had no idea what magical realism was, having lived in a culvert in Kyrgyzstan for the last 40 years, so I appreciate your effort at enlightening me!

So you, like the reporter, think that applying a steak to a black eye is akin to the wacky goings-on in Marquez's novels, people living for hundreds of years and what have you?
posted by languagehat at 10:28 AM on March 18, 2007

Given the rumor that Vargas Llorca gave Garcia Marquez the mulberry over his political views, I liked this pun in the Independent article:

"Garcia Marquez, who penned the novel The Autumn of the Patriarch, has turned a blind eye to Cuba's continued application of the death penalty"

Vargas Llorca was just adding a touch of tertium comparationis.
posted by painquale at 11:11 AM on March 18, 2007

Also, I didn't realize that the Barnes/Amis feud had ended. From the Independent article:

"He wrote back: "Jules, tell me to fuck off and everything you want - but try to stay my friend and try and help me be a friend of Pat. I'll call you in a while, quite a long while. I'll miss you." Amis recently turned up at the paperback launch of Barnes's novel Arthur & George; the pair had snubbed each other's launches since they fell out."

That's kind of sweet. (I have Arthur & George on my bedside table; I hear it's excellent and am looking forward to reading it.)
posted by painquale at 11:17 AM on March 18, 2007

For the record- not only do we have Mailer vs Vidal and Mailer vs Simon, but we also have Simon vs Vidal, which makes for a nice little triangle.
posted by IndigoJones at 11:28 AM on March 18, 2007

languagehat, you obviously don't know the seldom-mentioned part of the story: after the steak was removed from the eye, the man saw with the sight of a bull, infuriated by sudden movement and haunted by the spectres of red capes flashing just outside the edges of vision.
posted by spiderwire at 1:49 PM on March 18, 2007 [1 favorite]

Smart Dalek writes "No, magical realism."

Your grammar is off. In the case of applying a steak to a black eye, there should be no comma. The correct version would be:

"No magical realism"
posted by Bugbread at 6:57 PM on March 18, 2007

On the written page, Vargas Llosa would win with both hands tied behind his back.
posted by UbuRoivas at 7:16 PM on March 19, 2007

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