“Hello, this is Paul”

Still not finished.

You’re used to editing your thoughts about people — even the nicest ones — but there’s no need with Paul. There’s no such thing as a bad memory. He used to walk on his hands, by the way. He was 76 years old, and I walked into the room twice when he was walking on his hands. He was entertaining the kids on set, the two boys in the movie with whom he had sort of an eccentric, fatherly relationship. He was immediately drawn to them. He had to make them laugh.


Sam Mendes tells his best Paul Newman stories

Paul Newman: the definition of a leading man


This article had a profound effect on me in those days when I was young and dreaming about what kind of man I wanted to marry when I grew up, and of course I wanted to grow up and marry Paul Newman. What I always loved best about Paul Newman—and I loved many things—was how much, how palpably, he loved Joanne Woodward. That he was always quick to point out how different they were, and how smart she was, and seemed so genuinely dazzled and amazed by her, said everything about the man he was.

Just for fun—or for argument's sake—let's build ourselves a man's man. The kind of guy, it is often heard, they don't make anymore. Here's one set of specs:

He's got to have balls, for starters. He's got to be able to look physical danger dead in the eye. To this degree, he's got to be just a little bit crazy.

He's got to be loyal. To a code, a craft.

And loyal, too, to the woman he loves. No matter that it isn't always perfect. The fact remains that she is his very best friend and teacher, which he isn't too butch to admit.

He's got to be able to say what he thinks, and when he doesn't think anything, to say that, or keep his mouth shut.

He's got to know the things that men are supposed to know; that is, what a slip differential is and the like.

And he's got to know the things that men aren't supposed to know; that is, the names of flowers and the mysteries that pass between most grown-up women and their fathers.

[ "The Leading Man: Paul Newman -- Him with His Foot to the Floor," by Lee Eisenberg, Esquire, June 1988 ]

Paul Newman dies at 83

I gotta say it: this one hurts.

From the New York Times:

“We are such spendthrifts with our lives,” Mr. Newman once told a reporter. “The trick of living is to slip on and off the planet with the least fuss you can muster. I’m not running for sainthood. I just happen to think that in life we need to be a little like the farmer, who puts back into the soil what he takes out.”