peteg's blog

Michael Herr: Dispatches.

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Kindle. Read in intercontinental transit, Sydney to NYC. Michael Herr died recently, which prompted me to pick up this classic piece of Việt Nam war reportage. Perhaps I've read too many of these, am just too old, the generational wealth gap too large, as it moved me less than, for instance, John Balaban's far more reflective memoir. Herr makes much of his connection with fellow war junkies such as Tim Page, and the perhaps-still-MIA Sean Flynn. There are drugs, there's RnR, there's a totalled Hue, that's the scene. I learnt that he wrote and/or heavily influenced both Apocalypse Now and Full Metal Jacket, and some of that shows up here. I'm not sure I can indulge his hand wringing.