According to Ernest Hemingway, we are born with a raw optimism, but as we acquire knowledge of life’s inescapable suffering and fundamental emptiness, we are irreversibly damaged. Therefore, we must avoid the pain of thinking too much or feeling too much.
The sober individual who populate his fiction perform the pathetic game of life with a graceful dignity using whatever limited resources are available to briefly blunt the psychological trauma of knowledge.
Physical activity can supply psychic sanctuary, and natural actions are what Hemingway characters do best: fishing, guzzling, fighting, and fucking are all performed with reverence and ritualized scrupulousness. Ultimately, however, failure, ignorance, and oblivion are inevitable. Even if life is lived with bold methods, when all is said and done, it’s still doomed.
Hemingway knew that. In 1961, July, he committed suicide by shooting himself.