Many don’t like him. His dose of reality dripped in cynicism often can be difficult for even the most liberal thinker. Atheist writer Christopher Hitchens has never been shy about voicing his dislike for Religion or ethereal thinking. He is the man people of faith love to hate.
The news back in June that Hitchens 61, had cancer was met with some surprising results; new Christian groups formed to pray for his soul, other groups formed to pray for his death, even rationalist thinkers seemed ambivalently worried that cancer might cause Hitchens to rethink his own ideas about God, death and spirituality. It didn’t.
Many wondered how would Hitchens deal with the reality that he may be living on borrowed time?
With his quintessential British wit Hitchens has faced cancer head on, with a raw honesty, rather than emotion. Instead of hoping for a miracle Hitchens has been realistic on the state of his health, the role his hard living has contributed to his cancer, and what the likelihood of recovery might be.
“I can’t see myself smiting my brow with shock or hear myself whining about how it’s all so unfair.”
Hitchens says that life will continue as normal as possible for him, as he “battles” with cancer of the esophagus, which killed his own father at age 79.
The years of alcohol and cigarette consumption Hitchens says has had an irrevocable impact on his mortality.
“I have been taunting the reaper into taking a free scythe in my direction and have now succumbed to something so predictable and banal that it bores even me”, he writes in his recent column for Vanity Fair magazine.
Despite his resignation to the state of his health, there is still great uncertainty in his immediate future. Hitchens could survive the year or the next five, but as ‘Hitch’ already knows, the statics for survival with his type of cancer aren’t great.
Christopher Hitchens is determined to have the last word no matter what the outcome.
“I can still read and I can write.”
He also continues to give interviews and to promote his latest book, ironically a memoir ‘Hitch-22’, where he reminisces over the thirty plus years of his journalism career.
Love him or hate him, the man is uncompromising to the end.