“Such Friends”:  100 Years Ago, May 2, 1922, Toronto Daily Star, Toronto

The article, “Getting a Hot Bath an Adventure in Genoa,” appears in today’s paper. The writer, the Star’s European correspondent Ernest Hemingway, 22, covering the international Genoa Conference, reports that,

[UK Prime Minister David] Lloyd George says that conferences are cheaper and better than war, but, as far as I know, Lloyd George has never been blown up by an exploding Italian bathroom. I just have been. This is one of the numerous differences between us…”

Toronto Daily Star

Hemingway goes on to describe his experience last month when, at the apartment where he was staying in Genoa, his bathroom water heater literally exploded and he was blown into a heavy wooden door. The hotel manager assured him that he was actually quite lucky—he was still alive, wasn’t he? Alive, yes. Not seriously injured, yes. But definitely in pain.

However, Ernie doesn’t let this “adventure” keep him from his journalistic duties. He has managed to get one of only 11 press passes to the hotel where the Russian delegation is staying—not a Bolshevik fan, Hemingway nevertheless admires how hard the Russians work, late into the night—covered the Parisian Anti-Alcohol League—he finds it well organized “while the consumers are not”—and filed detailed glowing descriptions of the British PM, chief organizer of the Conference of 34 nations.

Hemingway is back in Paris now. He is enjoying his stint as a journalist, but is more encouraged that the literary magazine, The Double Dealer, based in New Orleans, this month is publishing one of his stories, just two pages long, “A Divine Gesture.” The editors claim they want to introduce those in the southern States to the new writing appearing elsewhere, but Ernest is the first new writer they have published so far this year.

Double Dealer, May 1922 

“Such Friends”:  100 Years Ago… is the basis for the series, “Such Friends”:  The Literary 1920s. Volumes I and II covering 1920 and 1921 are available as signed copies at Riverstone Books in Squirrel Hill, Pittsburgh, PA, and also in print and e-book formats on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk. For more information, email me at kaydee@gypsyteacher.com.

In June I will be talking about the Stein family salons in Paris before and after The Great War at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in Carnegie-Mellon University.

Manager as Muse, about Scribner’s editor Maxwell Perkins’ relationships with Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Thomas Wolfe, is also available on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk in both print and e-book versions.

If you want to walk with me through Bloomsbury, you can download my audio walking tour, “Such Friends”:  Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group.

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