A Club of One’s Own

By sir Taki Theodoracopulos

NEW YORK – Living a life of pleasure is fun, but it can also be tiring. Living an ethical life of responsibility is beneficial to the soul, but it can also be boring. I’m stuck between the two at times, and I think age has a lot to do with it. It’s a constant reminder, the very visible yoke of age, as I walk up and down Park Avenue every day completely unnoticed. I swear, I really don’t mind, in fact it makes me laugh at times when although impeccably dressed I go unnoticed even by beggars. And dressing properly these days really makes one stand out, like a giraffe among many penguins – but in my case, nothing. Old age makes one invisible, which is fine if one is a criminal, but not so good if one has even the slightest ego. For women it must be ten times worse, and my heart goes out to the old ladies.

With age, ambition takes a time-out, as does aggression against injustice, the plight of the Palestinians above all else in my mind. Forty years ago I was writing regularly against Israeli illegal settlements and direct occupations of Palestinian land. The usual and immediate accusations of anti-Semitism followed. If I remember correctly, it bothered me at the time because they were false, the accusations, that is. Now I’m like Rhett Butler and don’t give a damn, but I haven’t written about the Palestinians, have I? That’s because I’m lazy and according to my wife, “the laziest person I’ve ever met who does things.” The truth is that I now find most of them tedious and it seems I’ve heard their stories somewhere along the way. That’s old age all over again, I’ve seen it all and done it all. Never mind. There are far worse things than getting old, like the disappearance of hurt feelings and the wild passions of illicit love affairs.


My circle no longer goes to nightclubs, the proper ones no longer exist as we wait for Robin Birley to open his new club, but for now we will settle for dinners in homes, with fine wines, very good food from very good chefs and a few butlers from whom Hollywood could take a lesson. The Ferrari of butlers is Hercules, George Livanos’ man, and if ever there was someone as good as his name, it’s Hercules. Nightclubs these days I’m told are dark and very noisy places filled with street people craving fame and trying to stand out. How do they do it? Well, like the Depp vs. Heard trial, not in a very dignified way, that’s for sure.

I find it strange that in a supposedly equal country like the US, every outsider I see is trying to make some kind of statement to stand out. And even in a dark and noisy nightclub, the social bottom is in it. Back in the good old days of Eisenhower and Kennedy, some underworld types from Jersey in dresses that mimic those of the bourgeoisie would hang out outside El Morocco and the Stork. The door, to those monuments of exclusivity, for them never opened, the reason they waited was the false hope of getting our WASPy girls. We called them greasy and told them to get lost, but they knew how to fight dirty and many a romantic evening was lost after the fights. Three against one, but no greaseball ever attracted one of our girls, for reasons that today would be called racist, sexist and certainly snobbish. Mind you, it was a lot of fun, and if one survived the greasers there were plenty of rewards which I won’t bother with at this time.

As I write, the markets are crashing and cryptocurrencies are sinking. I only care about Michael Novogratz, the king of Bitcoin, whom I’ve never met, but whose father was a football player and wrestler at West Point, a fighting colonel in Vietnam, and my close friend and high school teammate back in 1954-55. But what did they expect with Biden and the spendthrifts in power? Democrats are other people’s money. It’s funny how people change once they’ve fooled enough fools to get elected. And because I’m finally old enough to give advice, here’s one to my former editor-in-chief, Boris Johnson, now demoted to the role of prime minister: You’re supposed to be a Tory, so try to behave accordingly and not like Greta Tunberg’s plaything.

Yes, it looks like a murky environment but the good news is that I am finally getting my mail from my guardian angels on Old Queen Street. Antony and Christopher and everyone else who wrote to me, thank you very much and sorry for not replying, but mail does not follow the travelling Greek children these days. But one I had to reply to was from Viscount W, who reminded me of a certain lady we romanced 64 years ago during Wimbledon, one I have seen in many films on TCM since then. Viscount W is a gentleman and no names were mentioned, just moments, which made it all the more poignant. In fact, I don’t know what I would have wanted more if they offered me, the 64 years back or another romantic weekend with the lady.


photo credit: Alfred Eisenstaedt