The Notebooks
of F. Scott Fitzgerald

(H) Descriptions of Humanity (Physical)


They rode through those five years in an open car with the sun on their foreheads and their hair flying. They waved to people they knew but seldom stopped to ask a direction or check on the fuel, for every morning there was a gorgeous new horizon and it was blissfully certain that they would find each other there at twilight. They missed collisions by inches, wavered on the edge of precipices and skidded across tracks to the sound of the warning bell. Their friends tired of waiting for the smash and grew to accept them as sempiternal, forever new as Michael’s last idea or the gloss on Amanda’s hair. One could almost name the day when the car began to splutter and slow up; the moment found them sitting in a Sea Food place on the water-front in Washington; Michael was opening his letters, his long legs thrust way under the table to make a footstool for Amanda’s little slippers. It was only May but they were already bright brown and glowing. Their clothes were few and sort of pink in general effect like the winter cruise adver­tisements.


The Uni-cellular child effect—short dress.


Cordell Hull—Donald Duck eyes?


The sinister faces of Elsa Maxwell, of Gloria Vanderbilt with her frozen whine, of Foreskin Gwinne, of Mr. And Mrs. J. O’Brien (Dolly Fleishman), the fatuous William Rhinelander Stuart and the stricken boredom in the eyes of his beautiful wife.


His hair was grey at 35 but people said the usual things—that it made him handsomer and all that, and he never thought much about it, even though early grey hair didn’t run in his family.


When Jill died at last, resentful and bewildered to the end, Cass Erskine closed up his house, cancelled his contracts and took a boat around the world as far as Constantinople—no further because he and Jill had once been to Greece and the Mediterranean was heavy with memories of her. He turned back, loitered in the Pacific Isles and came home with a dread of the years before him.


Rosalind gave up thinking some time between the Civil war and the depression, and when I want to get anything over to her I tell it to her two dozen times till she begins to parrot it back to me as it were an idea of her own. A satisfactory arrangement but somewhat a nuisance if a decision has to be arrived at in a hurry. Scotty thinks of her as a sweet old bore—she had the impression at first that she was expected to sit in the room when Scotty’s beaux called, as if the first guns were going off at Fort Sumter.


Attractive people are always getting into cars in a hurry or standing still and statuesque, or out of sight.


Stark’s expression, as if he could hardly wait till you did something else funny—even I was ordering soup.


His mannerisms were all girls’ mannerisms, rather gentle considerations got from......girls, or restrained and made masculine, a trait that far from being effeminate gave him a sort of Olympic stature that in its all kindness and consideration was masculine and feminine alike.


Captain Saltonville—the left part of his hair flying.


For better or worse the awkward age has become shorter and this youth seemed to have excaped it altogether. His tone was neither flip nor bashful when he said:


Ernest—until we began trying to walk over each other with cleats.


His features were well-formed against the flat canvas of his face.


Dr. X’s story about the Emperor of the world.


Big fingers catching lisps from unintended notes. Arms crowded against his sides.


Max Eastman—Like all people with a swaying walk he seemed to have some secret.


Romanticism is really a childish throwback horror of being alone at the top—which is the real horror: Vide: Zelda’s necessity of creating a straw man of me.


Photographed through gauze.


Pretty girl with dandruff in Rome.


A long humorous pimply chin.


A panama hat, under which burned fierce, undefeated Southern eyes.


His heart made a dizzy tour of his chest.


Amusing of K. Littlefield to call up Zelda about Lydig and Widener.


The gleam of patent Argentine hair.


A lady whose lips in continual process of masking buck teeth, gave her a deceptively pleasant expression.


He was a tall, even a high young man.


His old clothes with their faint smell of old clothes.


The boy’s defence of his mother’s innocence in the Lausanne Palace Bar. His mother sleeping with the son of the Consul.


Single way of imitating, distend nostrils, wave his head from side to side and talk through his nose.


Francis’ excitability, nerves, eyes against calm atmosphere.


They went to sleep easily on other people’s pain.


The air seemed to have distributed the applejack to all the rusty and unused corners of his body.


His long, lanky body, his little lost soul in the universe, sat there on the bathroom window seat.


The young man with a sub-Cromagnon visage.


Notes on Accident Room.

Afternoon—Rolling table with splints, gauze bandages, rotten
Tiled floor—wall halfway
Tubes nitrous oxide (gas)
Deaf man—humble. Man with broken arm. Whether I took my coat off or not. Coat like intruding. Fireman’s child (make it wife) take wings, notices on door, smoking. Red headed conceited interne who took me other ward. Laughter of O’ O’Donovan’s nurse.
First Night—Thrice told story of the night before about the transfusion from the assailant to the victim. Why it was necessary. Crowding medical student. Barber. Barrel of fish. Souture with flap, the ordinary needle and black thin gut. The two lady dactors. “Externes” Blonde nurse. Bad cut of uniforms. Injections, pink disinfectant, needle and tweezers to draw it through, the flap. Negresses with gonorrhea probably. Zinder’s wife. Barber’s pretentiousness—wonderful. Oyster barrel from biggest sea food dealer in X. Can I work? Wiggles fingers. Straps on chair. Orderly and board washed; his morality. Big legs of doctoresses, petit bourgeousie manners of Zinder. Negroes by first name even by northerners. Discussion about dyes. Difference and relation between lady doctors one already the prom girl, her coat.
Second Night—Jamaica negro. His name. Writing it. Two wounds, one found. Drunk named Katy or Casey ( damn good name he says; hesitation saying it) Medical students in evidence. Princeton spies, Trimbles schedule (relatives, diet, time—other doctors’ rounds) Blood transference—won’t you have a chair? Not a wrinkle in the colored woman’s face—nor a flicker—her disease. How it sounded bad faucet, looked—wine sloshed around looking for vein, lost pump, elevators, close both doors, upstairs in biology laboratory. Previous memories “never mind how much” and “it’ll do you good” and joking while they do it and change of tone as if patient wouldn’t understand “Awful trouble getting this blood.” Little boy, fanning wet cast. Dirty feet. Miss Brady—her psychology. Miss Brady knowing everything. The stitches through the eyebrows, Niagara Falls, North Falls, Miss Brady kidding. The student who got fresh. The policeman. The sick negro kid with 103 degrees. The father with “six head of children” and the son with the dislocated arm that would have to be operated on.
He had other commission from outside. One of the nurses in the accident room, an abandoned movie fan, wanted to know if she was really going to marry a certain star. It was in all the magazines— all Bill had to ask her was yes or no.


She did not plan; she merely let herself go, and the overwhelming life in her did the rest. It is only when youth is gone and experience has given us a sort of cheap courage that most of us realize how simple such things are. (used in Tender?)


The oily drug store sweat that glistens on battle and struggle in films.


He swelled out the muscles of his forehead but the perfect muscles of his legs and arms rested always quiescent, tranquil.


Her dress wrapped around her like a wrinkled towel unnecessarily exposing her bottom.


Always seems to be one deaf person in every room I’m in now.


Receiving line—girls pirouette, men shifting from one foot to the other. Very gracious man shaking hands like crawl.


The continual “don’t remember” of amateur singers is annoying.


Small black eyes buttoned to her face.


Herman Manowitz, bound as Gulliver, vomiting on treadmill, 1932 etc.


Gus first learned to laugh not because he had any sense of humor but because he had learned it was fun to laugh—think of other types in society—as a girl learns it’s pretty.


Deep belly laughs of H.L.M.


He was not the frock-coated and impressive type of millionaire which has become so frequent since the war. He was rather the 1910 model—a sort of cross between Henry VIII and “our Mr. Jones will be in Minneapolis on Friday.”


He was one of those unfortunate people who are always constrained to atone for their initial aggressiveness by presently yielding a more important point.


A white handsome face aghast .. imprisoned eyes that had been left out and stepped on and a mouth at the outrage.


She held her teeth in the front of her mouth as if on the point of spitting them delicately out.


Harlot in glasses


South—aviation caps, southern journalism, men’s faces


glass fowl eyes


A hand-serrated blue vein climbing the ridges of the knuckles and continuing in small tributaries along the fingers.


Girls pushed by their arm in movies.


Thornton Wilder glasses in the rosy light


He was dressed in a tight and dusty readymade suit which evidently expected to take flight at a moment’s notice for it was secured to his body by a line of six preposterous buttons.
There were supernumerary buttons upon the coat-sleeves also and Amanthis could not resist a glance to determine whether or not more buttons ran up the side of his trouser leg.


rather like a beach comber who had wandered accidentally out of a movie of the South Seas.


The good looking, pimply young man with eyes of a bright marbly blue who was asleep on a dunnage bag a few feet away was her husband—


Fat women at vaudeville or the movies repeating the stale wisecracks aloud and roaring at them.


On a aime le haliene mauvais quand elle etait malude parcequ’il a ete a lui.


The steam heat brings out Aquilla’s bouquet.


Jews lose clarity. They get to look like old melted candles, as if their bodies were preparing to waddle. Irish get slovenly and dirty. Anglo Saxons get frayed and worn.


There was no hint of dissipation in his long warm cheeks.


She carried a sceptre and wore a crown made by the local costumer, but due to the cold air the crown had undergone a peculiar chemical change and faded to an inconspicuous roan.


Those terrible sinister figures of Edison, of Ford and Firestone—in the rotogravures.


Round sweet smiling mouth like the edge of a great pie plate.


She took an alarming photograph in which she looked rather like a marmoset.


The bulbs, save for two, were dimmed to a pale glow; the faces of the passengers as they composed themselves for slumber were almost universally yellow tired.


He saw that they made a design, the faces profile upon profile, the heads blond and dark, turning toward Mr. Schofield, the erect yet vaguely lounging bodies, never tense but ever ready under the flannels and the soft angora wool sweaters, the hands placed on other shoulders, as if to bring each one into the solid freemasonry of the group. Then suddenly, as though a group of models posing for a sculptor were being dismissed, the composition broke and they all moved toward the door.


His restless body, which never spared itself in sport or danger, was destined to give him one last proud gallop at the end.


He had leaned upon its glacial bosom like a trusting child, feeling a queer sort of delight in the diamonds that cut hard into his cheek. He had carried his essential boyishness of attitude into a milieu somewhat less stable than gangdom and infinitely less conscientious about taking care of its own.


Aquilla’s brother—a colored boy who had some time ago replaced a far-wandering houseman, but had never quite acquired a name of his own in the household.


A tall, round-shouldered young man with a beaked nose and soft brown eyes in a sensitive face.


Her buck teeth always made her look mildly, shyly pleasant.


Then, much as a postwar young man might consult the George Washington Condensed Business Course, he sat at his desk and slowly began to turn the pages of Bound to Rise.


So poor they could never even name their children after themselves but always after some rich current patron.


The chin wabbling like a made-over chin, in which the paraffin had run—it was a face that both expressed and inspired disgust.


Men mouthed cigars grotesquely.


A handsome girl with a dirty neck and furtive eyes.


As an incorrigible masterbater he was usually in a state of disgust with life. It came through however, etc.


For the first time a dim appreciation of the problems which Dr. Hines was called upon to face brought a dim, sympathetic sweat to his temples.


She reminds me of a record with a blank on the other side.


The ones who could probably drive looked as if they couldn’t type; the ones who looked as if they could type looked also as if they couldn’t drive with any safety— and the overwhelming majority of both these classes looked as though that even if they liked children, the child might not respond.


“The German Prince is the horse-faced man with white eyes. This one—” He took a passenger list from his pocket, “—is either Mr. George Ives, Mr. Jubal Early Robbins and valet, or Mr. Joseph Widdle with Mrs. Widdle and six children.”


A young man with one of those fresh red complexions ribbed with white streaks, as though he had been slapped on a cold day, did not appear to be


Family like the last candies left in dish


She was so thin that she was no longer a girl, scarcely a human being—so she had to be treated like a grand dame


His face over his collar was like a Columbia salmon that had flopped halfway out of a can.


A thin young man walking in a blue coat that was like a pipe


Run like an old athlete


She reminds me of a turned dress by Molyneux


They look like brother and sister, don’t they, except that her hair is yellow with a little red in it and his is yellow with a little green in it


He sat so low in the car that his bullet head was like a machine gun between the propellers of a plane.


That wiley old Kiss-puss, Mr So-and-so.


A woman who smelled of gooseflesh.

Next: I: Ideas.

Переводы: H: Описания разных людей (физические) (разные переводчики).