Metropolitan Diary: The Best Selections from the New York Times Column

Ron Alexander, Author
Ron Alexander, Author William Morrow & Company $20 (256p) ISBN 978-0-688-14889-8
Reviewed on: 07/31/1997
Release date: 08/01/1997
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One of the most popular features of the Wednesday New York Times is ""Metropolitan Diary,"" a compilation of anecdotes by New Yorkers about New York that has been assembled by Alexander since 1977. The column is also popular around the country, as can be attested by the uproar when the Times removed the Diary from the national edition. It was promptly reinstated. The Diary finds its material on the streets, in the parks and, like this entry, on elevators: ""Oh, hi, Ted. Long time no see. Say, that's some tan you have."" Ted replies: ""It's jaundice, Marilyn, jaundice."" Marilyn: ""Well, whatever."" It even occurs in cemeteries: ""My phone call to a cemetery... was answered with: `You have reached Riverside Cemetery. If you know your party's extension...' Talk about the Internet."" Or we may overhear two transvestites talking: ""I told him he was never the man I was."" Or this conversation in the subway: ""Woman One: `Do you remember Kathy Coffee?' Woman Two: `Sure I do!' Woman One: `Well, she married a guy named Steven Potts and now her name is Kathy Coffee Potts!'"" There are also reminiscences about Carnegie Hall, the Village Vanguard and celebrity sightings of everyone from Mary Tyler Moore to Woody Allen. You don't have to be a New Yorker to enjoy these delightful and sometimes daffy insights into the core of the Big Apple. (Aug.)
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