Jump to content


Photo

‘Bullfighting, motor racing and mountaineering’ (split)


  • Please log in to reply
10 replies to this topic

#1 DCapps

DCapps
  • Member

  • 483 posts
  • Joined: August 16

Posted 31 August 2019 - 19:39

Per the BBC:

 

 

Not for nothing did Hemingway say: "There are only three sports: bullfighting, motor racing, and mountaineering; all the rest are merely games."



Advertisement

#2 DCapps

DCapps
  • Member

  • 483 posts
  • Joined: August 16

Posted 02 September 2019 - 00:13

Not for nothing did Hemingway say: "There are only three sports: bullfighting, motor racing, and mountaineering; all the rest are merely games."

 

 

This quotation has nothing to do with Hemingway, it is actually from a short story written by Ken Purdy in the Fifties. I think we settled this quite some time ago, but as in the case of more than a few things related to motor racing that are erroneous, it persists...



#3 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 65,930 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 02 September 2019 - 00:38

Purdy also restated it in All But My Life... or at least part of it...

But I feel sure he said in that that he had quoted it from elsewhere.

#4 DCapps

DCapps
  • Member

  • 483 posts
  • Joined: August 16

Posted 02 September 2019 - 01:00

Purdy also restated it in All But My Life... or at least part of it...

But I feel sure he said in that that he had quoted it from elsewhere.

 

There are three sports—bullfighting, mountain climbing, and motor racing. All the rest are recreations.  -attributed to Ernest Hemingway

With its swaggering machismo, this familiar quotation sure sounds like classic Hemingway. But in truth, the phrase was created by automotive writer Ken Purdy for a piece of short racing fiction called “Blood Sport” that first appeared in The Saturday Evening Post on July 27, 1957. (The story also appears in a collection of his works, Ken Purdy’s Book of Automobiles.) The sentence is uttered by one of the story’s characters, a race driver named Helmut Ovden.

 

 

"Auto racing, bullfighting, and mountain climbing are the only real sports—all others are games” has been credited to the author Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961) since the 1980s, but there’s no evidence that he ever wrote it. The inclusion of “bullfighting” probably brought to mind Hemingway’s book about the sport, Death in the Afternoon (1932).

The automotive writer and editor Ken Purdy (1913-1972) wrote about “mountain climbing, bullfighting and automobile racing” in a 1957 issue of The Atlantic and further explained in a 1960 book:

“I have a quotation in a story, a piece of fiction that won’t be published until next summer,” I told Portago, “something that I think you might have said: that of all sports, only bullfighting and mountain climbing and motor racing really try a man, that all the rest are mere recreations, games that children can play. Would you have said that?”

“I couldn’t agree with you more,” Portago said.


Purdy was discussing the quotation with driver Alfonso De Portago (1928-1957). A 1976 book called this “Marquis de Portago’s dictum,” but Portago was being told the line by Purdy. The “piece of fiction” is Purdy’s “Blood Sport,” from the July 27, 1957 Saturday Evening Post:

“There are three sports that try a man,” she remembered Helmut Ovden saying, “bullfighting, motor racing, mountain climbing. All the rest are recreations.”

The American writer Barnaby Conrad is sometimes credited with the quote, but there’s no documentary evidence to support this.

 

 

Here is another take on Hemingway and the quote from a review in Veloce Today from 2004: (http://www.velocetod...ifestyle_46.php)



#5 Michael Ferner

Michael Ferner
  • Member

  • 4,783 posts
  • Joined: November 09

Posted 02 September 2019 - 10:00

It doesn't improve the quip one bit, knowing it wasn't uttered by Hemingway...

#6 eibyyz

eibyyz
  • Member

  • 328 posts
  • Joined: March 10

Posted 03 September 2019 - 14:13

Here is another take on Hemingway and the quote from a review in Veloce Today from 2004: (http://www.velocetod...ifestyle_46.php)

 

Conrad was a huge bullfight aficionado, probably the best American writer on the subject after Hemingway died.  

Strange, but everywhere outside of Iberia considers bullfighing a sport, where it's more accurately art, like that makes it any more acceptable.



#7 Jim Thurman

Jim Thurman
  • Member

  • 5,375 posts
  • Joined: February 01

Posted 03 September 2019 - 16:03

Per the BBC:

 

More importantly, did you contact the BBC with the pertinent info attributing the quote to Purdy? (to me, the quote always sounded far more Purdy than Hemingway).

 

I've managed to get two motorsport related errors made by the New York Times corrected. Both were in the same article. 



#8 Tim Murray

Tim Murray
  • Moderator

  • 21,904 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 03 September 2019 - 16:20

This thread has been split from the ‘Speed’s ultimate price: the toll...’ thread.

#9 lustigson

lustigson
  • Member

  • 5,472 posts
  • Joined: March 01

Posted 04 September 2019 - 12:46

Purdy-who?

 

Whenever I use the quote — which isn't all that often, to be honest :drunk: — I state that it is falsely attributed to Ernest Hemingway, just to be able to use his name in the conversation.



#10 john winfield

john winfield
  • Member

  • 3,068 posts
  • Joined: July 02

Posted 04 September 2019 - 14:00

Is this the Ken Purdy who had an entertaining squabble with Bill Boddy in the letters pages of Motor Sport? Or was that Ernest Hemingway?. 



#11 johnwilliamdavies

johnwilliamdavies
  • Member

  • 737 posts
  • Joined: January 05

Posted 04 September 2019 - 14:41

Per the BBC:

 

It was Andrew Benson. Name the wrongdoer.