RARA-AVIS: Re: Hammett or Chandler

From: Moorich2@aol.com
Date: 02 Dec 2003

In a message dated 12/2/03 7:20:08 PM Eastern Standard Time, owner-rara-avis@icomm.ca writes:

 Date: Tue, 2 Dec 2003 17:19:23 -0500 (EST)
 From: William Denton < buff@pobox.com>
 Subject: Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: Hammett or Chandler
 On 2 December 2003, Moorich2@aol.com wrote:
 : Actually, I find the Continental Op with his matter-a-fact toughness to
 : be far more convincing than Philip Marlowe. Don't get me wrong, I love
 : Chandler's romantic vision of the knight going down mean streets but I
 : don't view that stylized world and character as more convincing.
 Who would you rather be, though? I think Chandler's been so influential
 because we want to be Marlowe, not the Op.
 - --
 William Denton : Toronto, Canada : http://www.miskatonic.org/ : Caveat lector.

Oh no, no, no. Provocative question but I disassociate myself completely from your assumption. Speaking only for myself, I AM Phillip Marlowe in the sense that I completely understand and identify with his persona--maintaining a confident facade, trying to steer a correct path through a complicated, often confusing world of grays and ambiguities. I live with Marlowe everyday inside my skin and this is one of the great attractions of the character for me.

But I WANT to be the Op. Who likes being plagued with self-doubts? Who likes struggling for the right path? Who likes carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders?

Oh no, my friend, greater or lesser character we can debate but there is no debate about which I would rather be. Let me be the Op: doing the best he can
(which is pretty good), earning his salary, living by his smarts but when neccessary by his muscle, capable of meeting most challenges, respected and able to hold his head up in any company and, all in all, maintaining a proper perspective about things.

Richard Moore

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