The Breitbart Building by Andrew Klavan

Standing there that day, I understood that I was listening to a blueprint for an empire, and I believed without a doubt that Andrew would see it through. I teased him that one day his disheveled, frenetic, and countercultural image would have to be sanitized for the three-piece-suit portrait in oil that would hang in the foyer of the skyscraper named after him. I was laughing when I said it, but I meant it. There?s no question in my mind it would’ve happened that way.

I wrote somewhere once that Andrew Breitbart was “bizarrely lovable.” Andrew called that same day to confirm my impression. “I am bizarrely lovable,” he said. “I don’t know what it is about me.”

It was, in part at least, his solar generosity of spirit, an energy that poured out of him in every direction at once, whether for feud or friendship, conversation or work. I think he sometimes experienced this ambient vitality as a lack of focus. But for his friends and admirers, it was a delight and inspiration. It was also the power source behind a truly noble act of revolutionary mischief: his lifelong battle against the conspiracy of silence and lies that is mainstream American journalism.

I got a glimpse of his kinetic nature the first time we met—which was on the air, appropriately enough. He was sitting in for a talk show host and interviewed me over the phone about politics and the arts. Though many of Andrew’s most glamorous successes were in the arena of political journalism, the culture was his first passion. And as we grew excited discovering our shared convictions, we began to sound—as we both remarked later—like two stoned college roommates talking philosophy at four in the morning: “Yeah, yeah, yeah, man, that is so, so true!” In the midst of this, Andrew began to fire instant messages at me over my computer, insisting that I join him at meetings with other Hollywood conservatives. For me, who can only focus on one thing at a time, exchanging IM’s while talking on air was like juggling axes while playing piano. For him, who had to focus on everything at once . . . well, I’ve sometimes wondered what else he was doing at the time.


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