10 Life Lessons from Gore Vidal (1925 - 2012)

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Gore Vidal was an American author, screenwriter, playwright, and activist celebrated for his public political criticism and was often called an early champion of sexual liberation.

Vidal was born in New York, was first published when he was 19 years old, and continued to write novels, essays, memoirs, and plays including The City and the Pillar, Armageddon?, The Last Empire, The Best Man, and Visit to a Small Planet. He wrote for Esquire, won the Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters from the National Book Foundation in 2009, and made animated appearances in The Simpsons, Family Guy, and Da Ali G Show.

He died last night in his home in Hollywood Hills of complications from pneumonia. He was 86. The writer was known for his words and was legendary for his advice. Here are just 10 things we've learned from Gore Vidal ...

10. Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say and not giving a damn.

9. Apparently, a concern for others is self-love at its least attractive, while greed is now a sign of the higher altruism. But then to reverse, periodically, the meanings of words is a very small price to pay for the freedom not only to conform but to consume.

8. A narcissist is someone better looking than you are.

7. Everybody likes a bit of gossip to some point, as long as it's gossip with some point to it. That's why I like history. History is nothing but gossip about the past, with the hope that it might be true.

6. Never pass up a chance to have sex or appear on television.

5. In a nation that has developed to a high art advertising, the creator who refuses to advertise himself is immediately suspected of having no product worth selling.

4. The United States was founded by the brightest people in the country -- and we haven't seen them since.

3. Television is a great leveler. You always end up sounding like the people who ask the questions.

2. Everything's wrong on Wikipedia.

1. There is no human problem which could not be solved if people would simply do as I advise.

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