By Pete Hamill
A journalist and writer of Loving girls recreates the hard-drinking Brooklyn-Irish way of life that educated each element of his adolescence and early profession and that finally destroyed his marriage.
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Additional info for A Drinking Life: A Memoir
As I have acted in both capacities, I am able to say that the matter was transacted in an earnest and businesslike way. A. remark that my College Tutor (James D. Hustler) was the best crammer for an Act in the University. At the appointed time, the parties met in the Schools: 42 GEORGE BIDDELL AIRY. the Respondent first read a Latin Thesis on any subject (I think I took some metaphysical subject), but nobody paid any attention to it: then the Respondent read his first Dogma, and the first Opponent produced an argument against it, in Latin.
He was a man of keen sensitiveness, though it was combined with great steadiness of temper, and he never hesitated to attack theories and methods that he considered to be scientifically wrong. This led to differences with Ivory, Challis, South, Cayley, Archibald Smith, and others ; but however much he might differ from them he was always personally courteous, and the disputes generally went no farther than as regarded the special matter in question. Almost all these controversial discussions were carried on openly, and were published in the Athenaeum, the Philosophical Magazine, or elsewhere; for he printed nearly everything that he wrote, and was very careful in the selection of the most suitable channels for publication.
I was anxious about the result of the examination, but only in such a degree as to make my conduct perfectly steady and calm, and to prevent me from attempting any extraordinary exertion. " When the Classes were published the first Class of the Freshman's Year (alphabetically arranged, as is the custom) stood thus: Airy, Boileau, Childers, Drinkwater, Field, Iliff, Malkin, Myers, Romilly, Strutt, Tate, Winning. It was soon known however that I was first of the Class. It was generally expected (and certainly by me) that, considering how great a preponderance the Classics were understood, in the known system of the College, to have in determining the order of merit, Field would be first.
A Drinking Life: A Memoir by Pete Hamill