What Hemingway Would Think of the Internet

Would Ernest Hemingway have embraced our modern pastimes? Twitter, yes; Angry Birds, definitely not.

By Marty Beckerman, author of The Heming Way

If Ernest Hemingway hadn’t killed himself 50 years ago today at age 61, he probably would have died by now anyway. (No human liver could withstand more than a century of nonstop alcoholic pummeling. Not even Papa’s.)

But Newsweek can fantasize about Princess Diana cheating death, so we can imagine Hemingway walking — or staggering — among us in 2011. What would the hard-drinking, adventure-loving writer think of our modern technological lifestyle?

Not bloody much. We’re obsessed with conquering the digital world — accumulation of Twitter followers, Facebook friends, LinkedIn recommendations — whereas Hemingway conquered the physical world. The thrill of a retweet from Roger Ebert or Ashton Kutcher will never compare to the thrill of running with (more like from) the bulls or fighting a pack of voracious sharks over the remains of a prize-catch marlin.

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