The Polyglot Archipelago

Seven islands form the area now called Mumbai (Bombay until 1995). Marathi, Hindi, and English are just a few of the languages spoken there, including Bambaiva, a blend of Gujarati, Konkani, Urdu, Indian English, and more. Its home to 18.5 million, India’s most populous city. Rudyard Kipling, Salman Rushdie, and Fareed Zakaria all were born … Continue reading The Polyglot Archipelago

Coming Out Ahead

I just bought a dozen Cadbury Creme Eggs at nine cents apiece. $0.09! Now, to Malta! "I don't buy eggs from Malta," he confessed... "I buy them in Sicily at one cent apiece and transfer them to Malta secretly at four and a half cents apiece in order to get the price of eggs up … Continue reading Coming Out Ahead

One Year on the Beat

When it comes to terrorism, the enemy can't kill us if our institutions kill us first.

A year ago this week I put Jeff Mutton on the beat. Assigned to keep America’s diplomats safe in Saudi Arabia, he proved a tough match for tyrants as well as terrorists. He endured vacuous conversations during diplomatic soirees and survived quack psychiatry at the hands of State Department shrinks. He introduced us to a … Continue reading One Year on the Beat

Jimmy Breslin

Jimmy Breslin, Carrie Fisher, Bruno Kirby---together again. '...It spoke to you, and that pleases me.' Sally (Meg Ryan): “Well, let’s just say I’m not a big fan of Jimmy Breslin.” Jess (Bruno Kirby): “Well, he’s the reason I became I writer, but that’s not important.” Marie (Fisher): "Restaurants are to people in the 80s what theater … Continue reading Jimmy Breslin