We at the ol’ raincoaster blog have long been fans (and, almost as long, confused and saddened ex-fans, like all those little kids when they found out the World Series was fixed) of the controversial, bilious, bibulous ex-Brit writer Christopher Hitchens, now enjoying a cushy, spa-ridden sinecure, the just reward of age, at Vanity “Fifteen Dollars a Word” Fair, having some time ago experienced a midlife crisis of Shakespearean proportions, from which he has yet to recover. In fact, the sole point on which I am absolutely sure we are still in agreement is that his brother is an ass.
Encouraging hints are emerging, leading those who’ve enjoyed his fine words even as we’ve missed his fine mind for, say, the last seven or eight years, to hope that the message might yet match the medium in terms of quality. And we are all about the terms of quality, yo. One of the earliest expressions of senility in retreat came in the form of this remarkable video and article:
Christopher Hitchens Gets Waterboarded
From http://www.vf.com. How does it feel to be “aggressively interrogated”? Christopher Hitchens found out for himself, submitting to a brutal waterboarding session in an effort to understand the human cost of America’s use of harsh tactics at Guantánamo and elsewhere. VF.com has the footage. Related: “Believe Me, It’s Torture,” from the August 2008 issue
Interview conducted by David Rose and filmed by Arya Surowidjojo.
Note the opening remarks: I don’t know what Hitchens did to piss Graydon Carter off, but Toby Young is lucky he got out of there when he did, from the looks of things.
So, why did getting waterboarded so suddenly turn Hitch‘s mind from self-centered, cranky mush, to something closer to a source of intellectual insight? It’s complicated, but I have an idea.
Actually, that generally goes without saying, doesn’t it? Both parts of that sentence.
So, the idea is this: as we all know, Hitchens is infamously immoderate of appetite(s). Since pre-puberty his brain has been stewed in a tepid chemical bath of scotch, tar, nicotine, preservatives, unmentionables, Red Dye #’s 1 through 642, and whatever it is that middle-class dealers cut their drugs with. Naturally, as time went on the effects got worse, culminating in the interminable Route 66 piece aforementioned, not to mention the neaderthal reactionarianism and spittle-flecked defensiveness that have marked/marred his work ever since.
Through the (admittedly rather drastic, but hey, we’ve got to be realists in this world today, amIrite?) use of the latest in waterboarding technology, thanks to one short session, the patient’s brain is already showing signs of improvement. We at the ol’ raincoaster blog believe this to be the result of nothing less than the cleansing flushing action of a pure water near-drowning, a remarkably successful (and inexpensive) way to restore the brain itself to youth and beauty.
Waterboarding. The Cranial Neti Pot of the Future.
Were we making the terrorists smarter and younger all this time? I see a future for battle-scarred veterans; no longer dependent on a sadly-depleted GI Bill or consigned to a gloomy and inadequate Veteran’s Hospital, nor shunted to the streets, they can now use the skills they developed across the oceans in the millions of American day spas. Spa visits will never be the same.