While looking up some stuff in the subterranean NR archives by lantern light, I found a piece by Florence King on Gore Vidal. Here’s how it opens:
Giving one’s memoirs a title that has to be explained must be a status symbol among the leftist literati. First there was Lillian Hellman’s Pentimento; now comes Gore Vidal’s Palimpsest. Miss Hellman’s title at least sounded pretty, but Maître Vidal’s sounds like an arcane sexual practice involving an inflated condom that explodes like the Hindenburg in the tradesmen’s entrance of some hired Apollo, sending ecstasy and other things washing over Maître Vidal.