I am a writer with a motley assortment of credits, including the Introduction to Arie Zand’s Political Jokes of Leningrad, for which I was paid the princely sum of $500 in 1982. Also: two novels about Russia; and two – soon to be three — non-fiction books on various subjects. I worked for Business Week magazine in Los Angeles, Moscow and Boston, a cheery eight years of my life I now call The Lost Weekend.
In 1987, I started working at the Boston Globe, where I became seriatim, a business columnist, an Op-Ed columnist and finally a columnist in what used to be called the Living Arts section. I took a buyout in early 2013 and am now writing a weekly column in the Opinion section. I have won a few awards, including some Best of Boston citations, a Massachusetts Book Award and an extremely lucrative (now defunct) John Hancock Award for Excellence in Financial Writing. I was a Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford for the academic year 1996-1997, which was an award of sorts, in addition to being lots of fun.
The Globe allowed me to write occasional humor columns for the (soon to be disastrously renamed) International Herald Tribune, as well as the first-in-the-world squash blog, for Vanity Fair. My friends and I used to read and post “hate mail” podcasts for the Globe website, reading letters from irate readers. Alas, our efforts failed to attract much of an audience. Further proof, if any were needed, that hate doesn’t pay.
Here is a link to an interview I did for the Globe’s web site a few years ago, where, according to my wife, I say at least one very stupid thing, “…You don’t even have to be right.” But I meant it.
I have been married for a very long time and my three adult sons seem to be thriving, for which much thanks.