On Not Giving Up

So, here I am reading “Giving Up: The Last Days of Sylvia Plath.” A good book, for sure, with a strikingly evocative title. Then I’m thinking, what would my own hardback heroine have said about a heading such as that, maybe one like, “Giving Up: The Last Days of Vicki Adams”?

Without question, she would have hated it. And I know why.

Because Vicki Adams was not a quitter. Period.

My Way

“The only difference between us,” she would say to me in her last days, “is I have a basic ETA and can’t get around much anymore. But other than that, I am still your old ornery, never-give-up-until-forced-to friend.”

Both Sylvia and Vicki were writers, of sorts, offering their readers different content through different venues with different levels of ability. In each case, however, you had to go deep – really deep – into their respective words in order to get a handle on the message they were trying to convey.

But the bell jar never descended to trap Vicki Adams within its distorted glass. She would not have allowed it. And unlike Plath, who caved in to the way things were and chose to end her life, life was rudely taken from Vicki.

Attuned as I now am to Plath’s unfortunate misery, I can understand the reasoning behind her death; I have yet to understand that of Vicki’s.

“I am actually not sure what I believe about death,” she wrote on September 21, 2007. “Heck, it was hard enough trying to figure out what I believed about life.”

Vicki passed away peacefully on November 15, 2007. Less than six weeks prior, on October 7 and while in great pain, she pecked out a 3100-word essay on personal bravery, a then-sensitive subject brought to her attention by a well-meaning friend. “Perhaps it is really brave of the listener to listen to the dying talk about death,” Vicki offered early in her manuscript, as if to say, pay attention, folks, because this is important.

Take a moment and read what she had to say by clicking on the My Way tab above. Look deeply into her final words, written during the last days of Vicki Adams.



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4 responses to “On Not Giving Up

  1. Craig Giddens

    I have just completed “The Girl on the Stairs” and it has been probably the best book I’ve yet read on the JFK assassination. I was in the third grade on November 22, 1963 and I still have a clear remembrance of one of the school teachers telling another that the President had been shot. I was like most people in that I didn’t give the matter any deep thought over the years until the 50th anniversary. I saw Vincent Bugliosi’s “Reclaiming History” at a local bookstore and browsed through it and felt it just wasn’t right. This set me on a quest of reading several books on the subject; most recently “The Girl on the Stairs” and as I stated before this is one of the best.

  2. Ben

    Hi Barry,
    Any news to that tv-show where Vicki met with Mark Lane on the Mort Sahl show? Did you ever get a copy?
    Take care, Ben

    • Hi Ben,
      I haven’t been able to find anything. David Lifton, my friend in LA, checked into it and also uncovered nothing. I’ve had several people write to say they remember seeing that particular show but they couldn’t provide any other details. So it apparently does exist, I just don’t know where.

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