Some authors you never outgrow.
I met Kurt Vonnegut once, in 1994 at a book party in the Hamptons for Erica Jong's Fear of Fifty. He was tall but hunched over—a sad-eyed wonderful-looking walrus. I spoke with him briefly and despite an arduous internal struggle, could not help committing Hazel's crime and mentioning the fact of our shared Indiana background. Standing by the pool, smoking and mournful, he reminisced a bit about Indiana before sharing a reflection on the wider human condition, which, predictably, he found depressing. "We're all lost animals, looking for a herd," he said.
So it goes.
Respect from the granfalloon.
Liesl Schillinger is a New York-based arts writer.
Photograph of Kurt Vonnegut by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images.