I am super-there for Feud: Capote Vs The Swans and I hardly ever watch television. Yes, I know I should be watching something about arable land or microplastics but when I realized this was happening, I actually yelped.
Is it escapist, gossipy, nostalgia-noire, bitchy, style-obsessed and nothing to do with the pressing realities of our era? Fuq I sure hope so. It tells the story of how Truman Capote, the iconic Libran writer, essentially committted “social suicide” with one devastating, crazy article that revealed the secrets of all his most elite contacts.
In this case, they were the It-Woman – not girls – of his generation and they wielded more than mere social influence. The piece – La Cote Basque 1965 – was 13,000 words long and published in the November 1975 issue of Esquire magazine.
One of the bitchiest, weirdest and most extraordinary things ever written, the article purports to be about one lunch at this particular restaurant and uses that construct for the info drop plus observations.
Trigger warning for obscene language and every ‘ism’ you can think of – it’s still fantastic writing.
No matter how much people loathed Truman Capote, the iconic Libran writer, no-one ever denied his magnificent wit. He had Mercury in Virgo opposite Uranus, FYI. It’s interesting as he was drawn to the heights of his era’s society and with his Leo Venus conjunct Neptune probably idolized the scene and it’s charismatic swans but his Mercury won out.
He’d already become famous for his breakthrough books – In Cold Blood, Breakfast At Tiffanys etc – so why did he need to do this? It was undeniably cruel to the women involved, regardless of their privilege. Capote had Pluto on his Mercury all 1965 and it was on his Libra Sun in 1975, when he sprung this article.
It immediately sparked a vicious feud that naturally captured the eye of the writer-producer Ryan Murphy. I’ve been a big fan of this Scorp* since Nip-Tuck 20 (!) years ago and think his Sun being conjunct Neptune, gives him something extra. Apart from his obvious story-tellinh nous, his ability to style and showcase sub-genres is flawless.
So Feud: Capote Vs The Swans has a cast that includes a cotery of luminaries as well as peripheral Gen X icons like Diane Lane and Calista Flockhart, who I thought had retired to be Mrs Harrison Ford full-time.
Oh and the two main “swans” that Capote fuqed over in La Cote Basque 1965 – Babe Paley and Slim Keith – were Cancerians, who really know how to work a grudge. What was he thinking?!
*Ryan Murphy lied about his birthdate to Madonna in a job interview because he’d been told she doesn’t work with Scorpios.
Image: Babe Paley & Gloria Guinness