Somebody recently tried to win an argument with me by quoting Truman Capote. The argument (okay, it was actually just a friendly discussion) was about the definition of being a Writer. What the individual in question was unaware of was the fact that I’m really not the sort of person that goes “okay, well if So-And-So says that, then that’s good enough for me”.
The fact is, I simply don’t hold other people’s opinions in the same high regard that I hold my own. I mean how does having a couple of tiny pieces of work published a while back make this guy’s opinion on anything (with the possible exception of the real motives of Holly Golightly) any more valid?
Truman Capote was a particularly bad example to pick with me, anyway. In my view, Capote was a low-life piece of scum and I’d no sooner take his word for something than I would chew off my own ear.
You appreciate that I’m making this assessment not on having met the man, nor read any interviews with or articles about the man, nor indeed read any of his work. No, I’m basing it on the film ‘Capote’.
And when I say, “basing it on the film ‘Capote'”, you realise that I’ve not actually seen the film, nor indeed read any reviews of it, but am in fact basing it purely on my pathological dislike of Philip Seymour Hoffman (who played Capote in the film).
And you will of course be aware that I’m making *this* assessment not on having met the man, nor read any interviews with or articles about the man, but on really not liking him in the film “Scent of a Woman”.
Yes, I know his character was supposed to be supremely unlikable in Scent of a Woman, and that the fact that I am prepared to completely vilify Truman Capote based entirely on that performance actually implies quite an impressive degree of acting skill.
None of that matters.