Person Place Thing

Randy Cohen is a very funny man. A former gag writer for Letterman and  Rosie O’Donnell, he wore a para-judicial robe for many years as the New York Times Magazine’s venerable Ethicist. New York Diaries was lucky to include not just one but two of his personae, the Randy Cohen we know from his online journal entries for Slate,  as well as those penned under a secret  identity granted him by a TV ratings giant. He graciously agreed to forego anonymity and he appears in this volume as the “Nielsen Family.”

Randy now has a new gig hosting Person Place Thing, an original NPR production where personalities expound upon their favorites in each category. Recent guest, author and raconteur, David Rakoff, produced a hands-free can opener  with which he proceeded to open a  tin of cigarello-thin cream-filled cannoli. (See above.)

The can was then passed around the crowd. When it reached my husband and me we discovered that preceding congregants had been reluctant to open the vacuum-packed seal for fear of making a sound. We had not had dinner, and if you were listening to the broadcast and heard a sharp, aluminum “pop’, that was us. We are Huns.

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