Under the Black Flag

Dying With a Kardashian

For those who like to see their name in print, the Hiltons and Kardashians of this world, make sure that, when the man in the white suit visits you, you’re the only one he’s dropping in on.  In fact, even if the white-suited gent visits you within a day or two of having called upon someone more famous, your goose is cooked.  Newspapers, television, radio, and the horrid internet have become so celebrity minded, the demise of such nonentities I mentioned above would take precedence over the death of the pope.

By now some of you may be wondering what I’m talking about.  I don’t blame you.  Let’s take it from the top.  On March 5, 1953, I woke up early and rather nervous.  My prep school, Blair Academy, was wrestling against my old prep, Lawrenceville, a school that had kicked me out for being recalcitrant and sneaking out of campus at night.  I had wrestled for Lawrenceville and it was imperative for me to beat the school that had treated me—I thought—rather shabbily.  During classes the news came in that the greatest criminal of all time (Mao’s slaughters had not become known as yet) Joseph Stalin had croaked that morning in Moscow.  I forgot all about the wrestling and spent the rest of the day on gossamer wings.  I hated Stalin and the commies more than the everyday Joe, as they had burned my father’s factories to the ground in...

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