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F. Scott Fitzgerald

September 24
"...three months before I was born, my mother lost her other two children....I think I started then to be a writer."   --- F. Scott Fitzgerald
Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald
September 24, 1896 - December 21, 1940
Born in St. Paul, Minnesota
Died in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California of a heart attack at age 44
An elegant room, at the end of the hall on the the third floor, a quiet haven featuring several empty bottles of Tanqueray gin....lacking only a photo of the author, which I placed on the dressing table as my birthday gift to the room. [Sometime later, a photo of Zelda appeared as well.]
My Guest Journal Entry:   Happy Birthday, F. Scott Fitzgerald !  We have a past, you and I, that I'm only telling you about now.  Of course, I've read every word you've written, plus much about you...and Zelda.  And I've re-read  Gatsby multiple times, which I never do !  But we have a special bond because I taught an extraordinary group of students about you...when I was in the Peace Corps, in Kisangani, Zaire (which is, once again, The Congo) in the late 1970's.  I was a
professor at the Universite Nationale du Zaire, and I was charged with teaching an American Literature course to future English teachers.  The catch:  I had no books.
But I found a copy of Gatsby, borrowed a manual typewriter, bought a bunch of stencils, typed until my fingers bled, and then ran them off on an ancient mimeograph machine.  Eh, voila !  My French-speaking students had excerpts from The Great Gatsby to study and marvel over.  And now here I am, in a much cooler, safer, and more tranquil locale.  (Ken Kesey slept here too, you know).  We share September as a birth month, and a fierce romantic streak, and a belief in the green light.  My gift to your room on your birthday is a photo I quite like of you:  smiling, slightly disheveled, rather windblown.  Is there anything in those pockets, other than your hands ?  That will remain your secret----  Kelly Paige
Kelly Paige,
Apr 22, 2013, 10:55 PM