Who Would You Invite?

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Who Would You Invite?

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1Limelite
oct. 7, 2015, 5:58pm

So, I'm giving a small dinner party in three weeks for a few reading and writing buddies. To complete the table, I would like to invite the ghosts of three famous authors who can keep the conversation going.

I need your help, though. I'm thinking of the following guest list:

Dorothy Parker
Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, aka Moliere
William Blake

I want to be sure that the company stays jolly, that there are no teetotalers to worry about keeping happy, and that plenty of strong opinions are held that will spark brilliant conversation.

Dorothy will have plenty of barbs to deliver on Blake's verse and Moliere's too beautiful self. I know Moliere will cast a gelid eye at Dorothy's complex and insecure self and Blake's rather foggy nature and contribute a few jibes about fakes. Blake. . .well, there's a risk he may have one of his visions, then fall asleep on the carpet. On the other hand, he may immortalize the night in poetry. And he'd be a superb conversationalist, well versed (Ha!) in topics from painting, to printing, to annoying Dorothy with his Romanticism.

Should be a great evening as long as I keep my eye on the wine. Don't want to be too liberal in dispensing it. Looking forward to lots of fun and original entertainment. But maybe you could make it even better?

If you were in my shoes, who would you invite and why them?

2RickHarsch
oct. 7, 2015, 6:10pm

Joyce--he had a nice tenor, liked to laugh and drink

3ahef1963
oct. 7, 2015, 6:40pm

Gerald Durrell. He'd bring lemurs and a tapir and keep us all amused!

4Cliff-Rhu-Rhubarb
oct. 19, 2015, 1:25pm

What a great question.

H G Wells, because he would be so interested in discussing the social and technological changes since his time.

Sir Richard Francis Burton. Expert fencer, discoverer of Lake Tanganyika, visitor of forbidden cities, translator of 1001 Nights and the Kama Sutra, he'd have plenty to say and would be guaranteed to stir things up.

David Niven. Yes, an actor, but also the other of two best-selling works, so he can come. A gentle soul, charming and debonair, he could smooth any ruffled feathers in the party whilst effortlessly entertaining with a fund of stories.

I considered Truman Capote, but he would start bitching about fellow guests the moment they left the room.

5LolaWalser
oct. 19, 2015, 1:44pm

I'd prefer to invite famous talkers/conversationalists into a larger group, but small or large, my invitation list would be led by Woolf and Wilde.

62wonderY
oct. 19, 2015, 2:07pm

Oscar Wilde might be a fun choice. But if I could choose anyone at all, it would be Samuel Clemens. Can I invite his wife too? I think that would make him happy.

7Limelite
oct. 19, 2015, 2:52pm

>5 LolaWalser:

Wouldn't Virginia be too shy for such a gathering, being averse to strangers? Or did you mean Leonard Woolf -- now he'd be willing to talk, after all, he was elected to the Apostles while at Oxford. I'd sit up all night for his stories about his years in Ceylon.

Of course, I'd insist he bring his friends (Lytton Strachey, Bertrand Russel, Keynes, E M Forster, Clive Bell, and others), swelling the party beyond my vision. But what a party it would be!

8LolaWalser
oct. 19, 2015, 3:14pm

>7 Limelite:

Virginia, absolutely. By all accounts one of the most brilliant, magnetic talkers ever to exist, and her own writing testifies enough to her amazing powers of observation and expression.

9Cecrow
Editat: oct. 20, 2015, 1:40pm

Samuel Clemens is a brilliant choice. I like H.G. Wells too, so long as he sticks to literature and science as his topics. Going way back, I'd like to invite Samuel Johnson.

Edit: Charles Dickens!

10gilroy
oct. 20, 2015, 1:48pm

I'm with >6 2wonderY: and >9 Cecrow:. Mark Twain would be my choice.

11SomeGuyInVirginia
oct. 20, 2015, 2:54pm

Capote, natch. S.J. Perelman but give him Truman's drinks so he opens up and Truman doesn't. Groucho Marx (younger, not older) and the mathematician Johnny von Neumann.

12SomeGuyInVirginia
oct. 21, 2015, 2:11pm

I'd also invite Texas Guinan, and Shirley Jackson because she'd get hammered and weird.

>4 Cliff-Rhu-Rhubarb: David Niven, yes.