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More Memories of Hitch

The protracted wake for Christopher Hitchens, perhaps the ultimate contrarian scribe, continues. Too many people have too many great memories that beg to be recorded.

“In 2005, he was my companion for an unforgettable weekend at the NASCAR races,” my friend John Berlau writes in the March 2012 issue of The American Spectator. Berlau is director of the Center for Investors and Entrepreneurs at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

John is right. I’ll never forget it and I wasn’t even there. The image of the urbane Brit lounging about at NASCAR is one that will not remove itself from the memory any time soon.

I can picture Hitchens in many places, usually with a brass rail attached, but NASCAR is not one locale where I would think to look for him.

Conversely, I had wondered, with his untimely passing, whether he had ever encountered another famously outspoken Briton, Margaret Thatcher. In the latest issue of The Claremont Review of Books I got my answer.

“During the crisis over Rhodesia, Hitchens met Mrs. Thatcher and they had a contretemps that ended with her smacking him on the bottom with a rolled-up parliamentary order paper, and as usual getting the last word, ‘Naughty boy,’” David Pryce-Jones writes in the Winter 2011/12 issue of The Claremont Review.

That’s another visual that won’t fade so easily.

Malcolm A. Kline is the Executive Director of Accuracy in Academia [1].

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