Winchell ‘Read it in Winchell’ – Joe’s bar page 11/12

I didn’t know what this phrase meant so I looked it up – I think he was a gossip columnist in 40/50s famous for street slang – urban-speak in USA. his column would have been the ideal place to Holly spot – I suppose it was the Heat of its day.

Joe’s Bar seems interesting – like a place stuck in time – I’m intrigued by his bowl of fresh flowers which he ‘matronly’ takes care of. For some a bilious man ‘always sucking on a Tums’ it seems incongruous – why have the ‘large bowl of fresh flowers when everything else seems so drab – ‘two large mirrors reflect the weather from the street’? Any thoughts.

Joe Bell reminds me of the barman from the Simpsons selling Duff beer and whose name escapes me.

pic of Winchell

There seems to be a ‘street’ interest in Holly – still creating a stir when she seems so obviously past tense at the start of the book. ‘Holly and I used to go there’ – Joe’s bar.


5 thoughts on “Winchell ‘Read it in Winchell’ – Joe’s bar page 11/12

  1. Maybe Winchell’s was an early precursor to Hello magazine or the American equivalent OK or US Weekly – definitely more gossipy than Tatler.

    I suppose you could go really deep into the subconscious and say that the fresh flowers are a reference to Holly and her continued absence – especially as she is described as being one of Joe’s fixations . Maybe this shows the more tender feminine side of this confirmed bachelor. Then on the other hand it may just be an attempt to liven up a drab bar and perhaps bring the outdoors inside – especially as there are the two mirrors which reflect the weather outside. Charlotte

    • Interesting point Charlotte, I think that the flowers would be so bright in that space that they’d make a great photograph – are they Joe Bell’s beacon of undying support/love for her, she seems to bring out these paternal instincts in men – like Doc Golightly. Jon

    • I was really intrigued about the flowers too. I suppose they could be the author’s way of reiterating the love Joe has of Holly and its Joe’s way of thinking the flowers are Holly, therefore he lovingly tends to them everyday.

  2. I think you’re right Julie, Like all good authors, Capote just places them there, and lets us decide – Can Holly be likened to flowers? – I suppose, like flowers, Holly is there to be admired, or looked after?


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