Vox Populi: The O'Shaughnessy Files

Vox Populi: The O'Shaughnessy Files

WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY
Copyright Date: 2011
Published by: Fordham University Press
Pages: 40
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt14bs06b
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  • Book Info
    Vox Populi: The O'Shaughnessy Files
    Book Description:

    Vox Populi is the long-awaited fourth collection of interviews, editorials, essays, observations and keen insight from legendary New York broadcaster William O'Shaughnessy. With this inspiring new anthology, Bill is back in a big way, offering compelling dialogue and opinion on timely issues and current events in politics, media, the arts and popular culture.A masterful interviewer, O'Shaughnessy goes one-on- one with Barbara Taylor Bradford, Steve Forbes,Joe Califano and a colorful band of townie characters from Westchester - the Golden Apple. Broadcastingfor five decades from what the Wall Street Journal hailed as the quintessential community station inAmerica,his thoughtful and muscular commentaries have been widely praised in all the important journalsin the land.A self-styled First Amendment voluptuary,O'Shaughnessy is a stellar defender of Free Speech,having devoted the good part of fifty years to fighting censorship and government intrusion from his influentialperch in the heart of the Eastern Establishment.He's the one they roll out when the likes of Howard Stern, Bob Grant and Imus get in a jam. Colorful national figures and beguiling towniesabound in Vox Populi which is also laden with exquisitely beautiful eulogies and tributes to his departed friends Tim Russert, Wellington Mara, Robert Merrill and Ossie Davis.And, as in every Bill O'Shaughnessy book, there is stunning and powerful wisdom and brilliant observationsfrom Governor Mario Cuomo whom he so admires.The great American historian David McCullough observed: I always look forward to reading the historyof our times Bill O'Shaughnessy has written.O'Shaughnessy is an authentic American voice.

    eISBN: 978-0-8232-3249-9
    Subjects: Performing Arts

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-xii)
  3. FOREWORD
    (pp. xiii-xvi)
    MARIO M. CUOMO

    Bill O’Shaughnessy’s previous books were so good, I couldn’t put them down. This one, when you put it down . . . you literally can’t pick it up again! If they get any thicker, we’ll have to put them on wheels!

    Bill’s personal commentaries, written with casually elegant language, make you wish the whole country was hearing and reading his work. Actually, the whole world can now savor his genius thanks to the Internet and wvox. com. He is a journalist, commentator, connoisseur, a strong political presence, and a forceful advocate of great causes.

    During his remarkable fifty-year run as...

  4. PREFACE
    (pp. xvii-xxii)
  5. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
    (pp. xxiii-xxviii)
  6. F.O.B. (FRIENDS OF BILL)
    (pp. xxix-xlii)

    I’m also grateful to those generous individuals who have indulged my passions and enthusiasms during my professional life of some 50 years. All my writings, broadcasts, editorials, pronouncements, and speeches—indeed, my wholelife— have been instructed and enhanced by their kindness and, in many cases, by their love.

    Each has weighed my faults and shortcomings less diligently than they have assessed what they find commendable in my stewardship. And so I’m immensely grateful to them . . . collectivelyandindividually. It’s not so hard making your way in life with these dear souls cheering for you.

    Bob Abplanalp;...

  7. PART I: BROADCASTING, CENSORSHIP, AND THE FIRST AMENDMENT
    • THE SILENCING OF IMUS
      (pp. 3-4)

      Howard Stern, Opie and Anthony, Bob Grant, Bill Maher, Chris Rock, George Lopez, and even—God forbid!—Rosie. We’ve always had terrible examples to defend. And Don Imus has given us another stellar example. But defend it we must.

      Not the hateful and discomfiting words. But the right of the social commentator to be heard, and the right of the people to decide.

      Don Imus is a performer, a disc jockey, a humorist, and a provocateur with a rapier-sharp wit. Unlike many of our colleagues, he avoids raucous vulgarity or incendiary right-wing rhetoric directed at immigrants, illegal aliens, and other...

    • THE UNDOING OF DON IMUS
      (pp. 5-7)

      Much has been written and much said about the firing of Don Imus. After the recent appearance of Hillary Clinton at Rutgers, opportunistically pandering away, if a little late, about rising up against those who might disparage minorities or women, I felt compelled to speak up. So here goes.

      About ten years ago, my company moved from New York to New Haven, and I undertook the daily grind of a forty-minute morning drive to work. In that first year I tuned my radio to Don Imus and have listened to him at least two or three days a week ever...

    • BOB GRANT ON THE IMUS CONTROVERSY
      (pp. 8-10)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): In our profession, the Imus controversy lingers. The I-Man is silenced. For how long? Nobody knows. And we’re going to switch now to New Jersey for the dean of talk show hosts, the great Bob Grant. We are all your students, sir. How do you see this controversy with Imus?

      BOB GRANT (B.G.): Well, actually, after reflecting on it, I’m not really surprised. That doesn’t mean I approve of what happened. But Don has lived on the edge for a long time. And, of course, when I heard about all this, I immediately thought about what happened...

    • OBSEQUIOUS ACQUIESCENCE
      (pp. 11-17)

      A runaway train is headed straight for our profession, with a head of steam from the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) and Congress. The passenger list includes misguided regulators, legislators, concerned citizens, and even some broadcasters. We have to stop this train to preserve our politics, governance, economy, and culture.

      The people, our ultimate authority, must have freedom of expression. This extraordinary gift, the right to speak, to advocate, to describe, to entertain, to perform, to dissent? to sing? is more than a wonderful privilege; it makes this democracy a miracle.

      The Founding Fathers gave us freedom of expression without nuance...

    • FREE SPEECH
      (pp. 18-18)

      Some of it ain’t so pretty . . . but all of it needs to be protected.

      Words that are alliterative, amoral, anarchistic, anti-religious, appropriate, awkward, barely audible, bawdy, beyond the pale, biased, blunt, brave, charming, chaste, clumsy, coarse, crude, cutting, cutting edge, dangerous, desperate, disappointing, discursive, disgusting, disjointed, dismissive, dissonant, dolorous, doughty, dreary, droll, dull, enteric, excessive, exhilarating, ferocious, florid, halting, harmful to the community, horrific, humorous, ignoble, immoral, improper, in error, inane, inappropriate, inartful, inarticulate, incendiary, incorrect, indecent, insane, inspiring, insulting, jumbled, just plain silly, long-winded, loud, lusty, lyrical, meaningless, moral, nasty, noble, not serious, nutty, obscene, offensive,...

    • CENSORSHIP IN PARADISE
      (pp. 19-20)

      The new “rules” announced on Saturday by the Jamaican Broadcast Commission tobansongs and music videos in that magnificent island nation are ill advised. And dangerous.

      Prime Minister Bruce Golding is a man of intelligence and character who does not need to be reminded about the wisdom of our First Amendment, which has served America so well for so many years. It is thus to be urgently hoped the prime minister will “crack down” on his own government regulators who are trying to stifle free expression.

      The broadcasters of Jamaica are “permittees” and “trustees,” with a fiduciary relationship to...

    • NANCY PELOSI V. JAMES MADISON
      (pp. 21-30)

      An influential communications blog recently called for the reimposition of the so-called Fairness Doctrine, suggesting that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi might favor the effort: “It will not surprise us if the Fairness Doctrine returns and we wouldn’t get all that upset about it. Speaker Nancy Pelosi wants it back on the books. It could be good for broadcasting.”

      I’m absolutely opposed to this, and just to make myself clear, we’ll refer to it henceforth as theUnfairness Doctrine.

      The misnamed doctrine was struck down on August 4 , 1987 , by an enlightened FCC of its day. And although the...

    • FURTHER NOTES ON THE FIRST AMENDMENT
      (pp. 31-36)

      Of all the justices of the Supreme Court, the most persistent and stellar defenders of freedom of speech have been those three towering jurists Louis Brandeis, William Brennan, and William O. Douglas.

      In 1973 Justice Douglass thundered, “The Fairness Doctrine has no place in our First Amendment regime. It puts the head of the camel inside the tent and enables administration after administration to toy with TV or radio in order to serve its sordid or its benevolent ends.”

      President Ronald Reagan, with urging from the great Midwestern broadcast legend Ward Quaal, vetoed a bill to restore the Fairness Doctrine...

    • U.S. COURT OF APPEALS RULING ON DECENCY
      (pp. 37-37)

      The Founders of the Republic and, in particular, the framers of the First Amendment to the Constitution are smiling. So, too, is an itinerant printer named John Peter Zenger.

      This is not about obscenity or indecency. It is about creative expression, the use of language, and, ultimately, the truth.

      Government bureaucrats are unqualified to determine acceptable language. This enlightened decision by the Second Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals invalidates Washington’s flimsy rationale for defining the fine distinction between the profane and the obscene as summarized by that memorable phrase “I know it when I see it.” This ridiculous...

    • REMARKS PREPARED FOR THE MEDIA INSTITUTE
      (pp. 38-40)

      I am a broadcaster and a businessman. So I quite understand the practical, political reasons why our fellow broadcasters are signing consent decrees with the FCC to settle indecency complaints: the cost of doing business.

      But how high a price are we willing to pay?

      Being about “the people’s business,” we should avoid consenting to censorship.

      We are licensed to operate “in the public interest.” The public should be primarily interested in a powerful electronic media, free to tell the truth, either through a news story or artistic expression.

      Clearly, the government is neglecting the people’s interest and the Constitution...

    • RALLYING THE TROOPS: A LETTER TO BROADCASTING COLLEAGUES
      (pp. 41-41)

      I’ve been in touch with several lawyers, journalists, and First Amendment advocates, and we’re trying to write a joint op-ed piece about censorship and the FCC’s power to level draconian fines.

      We know that community stations are vulnerable. We know that talk and sports radio is vulnerable. We know that any cutting-edge programming is vulnerable. We know that public radio is vulnerable.

      And so, ultimately, are our news broadcasts.

      It is tempting to think this “Washington/FCC stuff” will be adjudicated in the federal courts, where the First Amendment resounds more powerfully than it does at the commission or in Congress....

    • ONE TALL ORDER: A MEMO TO CENTRAL CASTING ABOUT THE CRITERIA FOR LEADERSHIP AT THE NAB
      (pp. 42-46)

      A daunting task awaits our new leader. The animus against broadcasting is growing each day, and it knows no ideological bounds. The Religious Right and the Intellectual Left are on the march against our most basic freedoms. And the single-issue “values” zealots are in full-throated control of the assault.

      Many TV execs are intimidated by economic and legislative threats. And we radio broadcasters sail serenely by with our newfound wealth from consolidation . . . the buying up of small, regional community stations by absentee owners and speculators. (All this, of course, before the days of “penny” stocks.)

      The First...

    • THE “F-BOMB”
      (pp. 47-47)

      LARRY KING (L.K.): Hey, O’Shaughnessy, how are the radio stations?

      WILLIAM O ’ SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): They’re fine, Larry; we’re keeping ’em going. Actually, we’re hunkered down right now with this obscenity thing.

      L.K.: What the hell does that mean?

      W.O.: It means if somebody drops the “F-Bomb” on the air, it will cost about $200 thou!

      L. K.: What’s the “F-Bomb”?

      W.O.: It means if somebody says “fuck,” it will cost 200 big ones or more.

      L. K.: Why the fuck would somebody want to say “fuck”?...

    • REMARKS AT HOFSTRA UNIVERSITY
      (pp. 48-57)

      May it please you, Professor Evans . . . .

      I’m grateful for the opportunity to present myself to so many of your marketing, advertising, communications, and journalism students.

      As the permittee of WVOX and WVIP, I make my way as a localyokel “townie” radio broadcaster up the road a piece in Westchester. My radio stations are endowed with very beguiling call letters: one is called WVOX, from the Latinvox populi, the “voice of the people”; and the other is called WVIP.

      WVIP is a real powerhouse, with a big, strong FM signal. But WVOX, at 1460 on the...

    • Photographs
      (pp. None)
    • INTERVIEW WITH DAVID REHR, OGDEN ROGERS REID, GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO, AND GORDON HASTINGS ON FREE SPEECH ON THE AIRWAVES
      (pp. 58-69)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): It’s a pleasure once again to be invited into your hearth and home. This is a busy political season, and we have lined up a special guest from the nation’s capital. He is president of the National Association of Broadcasters, the chief advocate for every radio and television station in America: David Rehr.

      DAVID REHR (D.R.): Bill. I appreciate being here, and I am experiencing, in your station, the very best of local radio, and it’s very inspiring.

      W.O.: You represent . . .

      D. R.: The National Association of Broadcasters and its 8, 300 members, including...

    • INTERVIEW WITH GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO ABOUT INDECENCY IN BROADCASTING
      (pp. 70-76)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): We switch now, on this springlike day, to Willkie, Farr & Gallagher, the decidedly white shoe (upstate elite), ivory-tower law firm high up in the canyons of Manhattan. And there in a spectacular corner office: Mario M. Cuomo, the former governor of New York, who was recently accused— by a college president— of being “the greatest thinker of the twentieth century.” Can I ask you something that has to do with my own tribe, Governor?

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): Go for it, O’Shaughnessy.

      W.O.: Indecency. Broadcasters have been rushing to “make nice” with Congress, particularly its Midwestern...

    • INTERVIEW WITH LOUIS BOCCARDI
      (pp. 77-81)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): CBS has just released his report. He’s been on all the networks and cable shows, and he’s been quoted this day in all the major journals of our nation. He’s also one of our Westchester neighbors . . . Louis Boccardi. For a good, long time, he was president and CEO of the mighty Associated Press, one of the most respected news organizations in the world, and he is a director of the mighty Gannett Company. In recent months, he’s been behind closed doors on an important assignment with Dick Thornburgh, the former U.S. attorney general, trying...

    • INTERVIEW WITH FREDERIC DICKER, STATE EDITOR, NEW YORK POST
      (pp. 82-90)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): The national political action—the presidential election—is behind us. It’s winter again in the land. And now the scene shifts to Albany, the capital city of our state, and we have on the line the “enfant terrible” of the press corps, which means he’s one tough hombre. His name is Fred Dicker. He’s the state editor of theNew York Postdaily newspaper. And another journal, the one that comes out on that funny salmon-colored stock, theNew York Observer, also one of my favorites, called him the “King of Albany.” Frederic Dicker, have you been...

    • INTERVIEW WITH MATT DAVIES, 2004 PULITZER PRIZE–WINNING EDITORIAL CARTOONIST, JOURNAL NEWS
      (pp. 91-95)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): Lightning struck theJournal Newsthis week when the Pulitzer Prize Committee awarded a Pulitzer to the editorial cartoonist, Matt Davies. It’s the first time in the long history of our hometownJournal Newsthat we’ve ever received a Pulitzer. Matt Davies, when you got the news, how did you feel?

      MATT DAVIES (M.D.): It was a big surprise, Bill. I knew I was a finalist, and the other finalists were Garry Trudeau and a fellow named Steve Sachs, a cartoonist for theMinneapolis Star-Tribune—and they’re bothverygood cartoonists. Of course, Garry Trudeau is sort...

    • INTERVIEW WITH JOHN CRIGLER, WASHINGTON COMMUNICATIONS ATTORNEY
      (pp. 96-99)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): The First Amendment is taking some haymaker punches from theWashington lawmakers. I guess it started with Janet Jackson’s right breast during the Super Bowl. Now, they’re picking on radio, just what you’re listening to right now, here in the heart of the Eastern Establishment. There is a wise man in Washington named Crigler. John Crigler is a champion of the First Amendment, and he’s worked on some notorious cases for the Pacifica Foundation and others. John Crigler, how do you feel when you see broadcasters go in and be so damned obsequious?

      JOHN CRIGLER (J.C.): I feel...

    • INTERVIEW WITH RALPH R. MARTINELLI
      (pp. 100-104)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): We begin the New Year with a conversation with one of Westchester’s most controversial citizens, the veteran publisher known as the “enfant terrible” of the public press. His name is Ralph Martinelli, and he runs all those Martinelli weekly newspapers, including the new “official” newspaper of Yonkers. It’s a sweet victory for you, Mr. Martinelli.

      RALPH MARTINELLI (R.M.): It certainly is. It was a long time coming.

      W.O.: Ralph, you have taken on damn near everybody: Governor Pataki, Jeanine Pirro. How do you see your role as journalist and publisher?

      R.M.: I believe newspapers should expose corruption...

    • TODAY’S SUPREME COURT OPINION ON FLEETING EXPLETIVES
      (pp. 105-105)

      It appears that the Supreme Court is giving broadcasters “Un due Process.”

      Instead of a decision on the constitutionality of the First Amendment, the Court dwells on the intricacies of the Administrative Procedure Act.

      Thus I’m afraid today’s decision isprologuerather than epilogue, whose practical effect is to continue the dangerous status quo.

      By focusing on the procedural issue of whether the FCC explained its new approach to “fleeting and isolated” words, the Court delayed the decision everyone should care passionately about: whether the FCC’s Indecency Policy is constitutional.

      As an opinion about what a government agency has to...

    • THE POST CARTOON
      (pp. 106-108)

      The contretemps over the Sean Delonas cartoon in the New York Post is winding down. It’s about time.

      The whole thing is bewildering to those who never actually saw the correlation between the poor, crazed ape who was put out of his misery last week up in Connecticut and the geniuses who hastily assembled the stimulus package in Washington.

      It was suggested by one of our listeners that maybe, just maybe, the cartoonist was trying to illustrate the ancient concept of inevitability or “randomness,” as reflected in the timeworn notion that if you put one thousand monkeys in a room...

    • THE NEW YORK STATE BROADCASTERS HALL OF FAME INDUCTION CEREMONY, FIFTIETH-ANNIVERSARY CONFERENCE
      (pp. 109-111)

      To be thought worthy of the company of your other twenty-four really worthy and altogether distinguished inductees, including William S. Paley, Walter Cronkite, the Gambling family, Sue Simmons, Thomas S. Murphy, Chuck Scarborough, and Frankie Crocker, is a great honor. You could poll our profession and find any number more worthy of this great honor. But you won’t find anyone more grateful than Bill O’Shaughnessy.

      This fraternity brings back memories and friendships of a lifetime: Tony Malara, Joe Reilly, Dick Novik, Marty Beck, Jim Champlin, Ed McLaughlin, Bob Bruno, Gordon Hastings, Phil Beuth, Dick Foreman, Ambassador Peter Straus, and my...

    • DAN RATHER LAWSUIT
      (pp. 112-113)

      Dan Rather spent a lifetime reporting to the American people. During a long and illustrious career, no one ever accused the CBS anchor of a lack of sincerity or integrity. Why should we think otherwise when he has taken legal action against his former network? Mr. Rather may have been unintentionally inaccurate from time to time. But so have we all.

      Dan Rather has always been innocent of deception. Thus, if he truly believes his network was unfair, unjust, or inaccurate in the aftermath of the Texas Air National Guard episode, then he has every right to speak out. He...

    • THE DECLINE OF CBS
      (pp. 114-115)

      To properly draw the measure of Larry Tisch’s time at CBS, you must look at his dazzling predecessor, William S. Paley.Broadcasting&Cable’s brilliant editorial “The House that Tisch Sold” and its sad conclusion, “He took a great company and made it small,” really spoke for a lot of people who knew and admired Mr. Paley.

      Despite all the encomiums in the New York papers last week, Larry Tisch will be remembered by our tribe for stripping the style, cachet, and tradition from the once-glorious CBS during his brief, but profitable, reign back in the ’80s.

      As has been...

    • MISSING IN ACTION, BY PATRICK D. MAINES
      (pp. 116-118)

      Politically speaking, freedom of speech in the United States is in tatters. Beleaguered by “progressives’’ on the Left, “social conservatives’’ on the Right, and policymakers of all stripes, our ability to freely express ourselves would already be greatly diminished but for the federal courts.

      Consider the landscape. The chairman of the FCC and large majorities in Congress favor content controls on indecent and/or violent TV programming. A leading candidate for president coauthored legislation that criminalizes even certain kinds of political speech when broadcast close to the date of federal elections. Left-leaning activist groups, unwilling to tolerate conservative opinion on talk...

    • WHITNEY RADIO NO-NO’S: BANNED FROM THE AIRWAVES!
      (pp. 119-119)

      Whitney Radio, an industry-leading defender of free speech, and its president, Bill O’Shaughnessy, a passionate advocate for the First Amendment, have banned “business speak” buzzwords on their radio stations until further notice.

      When O’Shaughnessy speaks on the college lecture circuit, he admonishes deans and professors, “If you encounter these drodsome phrases in any term paper or thesis, I hope you’ll immediately flunk the offending student!”

      Make it happen!

      Be pro-active!

      Absolutely!

      Sounds like a plan!

      Gettin’ it done!

      24/7

      Doin’ what it takes!

      Change the paradigm!

      Think outside the box!

      The whole nine yards!

      Maximizing assets

      Multi-tasking

      A new metric...

    • BOB GRANT’S RETURN!
      (pp. 120-120)

      He once called me a “stooge.” And that’s when he was in a really good mood! But I take special delight in Bob Grant’s return to enliven New York’s airwaves.

      I know he’s been lethal to Mario M. Cuomo, one of the most venerable figures in American history. But as a performer, social commentator, and radio talk show host, he is without peer.

      And next Monday, when this seventy-nine-year-old walks into a WABC studio in New York City, adjusts his headphones, and leans into that microphone, the sparks will fly.

      An icon is properly restored. We are all his students....

    • M. PAUL REDD DIES SUDDENLY!
      (pp. 121-122)

      One of Westchester’s most prominent and durable African American leaders has died.

      Word came from the office of New York state Assemblyman George Latimer that M. Paul Redd died suddenly last night of a massive heart attack. He was in his mid-eighties.

      Paul Redd published theWestchester County Press, which only this year celebrated its eightieth anniversary as the county’s only black-owned newspaper.

      Paul Redd purchased the weekly many years ago from the late Dr. Alger Adams. In addition to his publishing activities, M. Paul Redd was very active in New York state and Westchester politics, serving as vice chairman...

    • GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO’S REMARKS ON THE PASSING OF M. PAUL REDD
      (pp. 123-123)

      I’ve just learned of Paul Redd’s passing, and I am saddened by it.

      Paul Redd had an awful lot of strength and a whole lot of strong opinions. He had a strong voice, and a strong will that inspired him to use that voice, speaking the truth, and spreading it, as he saw it, about politics, about politicians, and even beyond, whether politicians liked it or not.

      He was a proud owner of the only black newspaper in the county, which has been around for eighty years.

      And he spoke in that paper all he could on all these truths....

    • THE HELL-RAISER
      (pp. 124-126)

      Ralph Martinelli was a muckraking hell-raiser, a scold, a crusading publisher, and a royal pain in the ass. He cut a vivid figure in an age of dullness and cookie-cutter journalism.

      With his departure last week for what his late friend Governor Malcolm Wilson described as “another, and, we are sure, a better world,” Westchester lost an independent voice, however harsh, however strident, however provocative.

      At times, Martinelli could be vitriolic, unkind, and downright ornery. And he frequently stepped over the line of fairness and civility. Yet our colleagues in the press have covered Mr. Martinelli’s passing with an extraordinary...

  8. PART II: ONE ON ONE:: INTERVIEWS
    • JAMES BRADY: AUTHOR-COLUMNIST
      (pp. 129-134)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): With snow predicted for Sunday, let’s switch to the idyllic Hamptons before it arrives, to tony East Hampton and one of America’s great writers and journalists: James Brady. Brady writes about press barons, beautiful women, and landed gentry, but best of all, about his beloved former colleagues, the Marines. Brady, you’re in the middle of a national tour for your new book,Why Marines Fight. Why do Marines fight?

      JAMES BRADY (J.B.): Bill, whether it’s “good” wars like World War II or lousy wars like Vietnam and Iraq, the Marine Corps always seems to do very well....

    • “THE SHINING CITY ON A HILL”: AMERICA’S GREATEST ORATOR . . . TWENTY YEARS LATER
      (pp. 135-140)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): The political season is here, and the national party conventions are upon us. The Democratic Party of Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, and John F. Kennedy is meeting in the historic city of Boston. It’s surely a busy place with hopeful Democrats gathering from all over the country. But let’s switch now to New York City, and one of the most respected and revered Democrats of our time, the former governor of New York, Mario Cuomo. Governor, remember when you stood in the spotlight and gave that keynote in 1984?

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): I do remember, Bill....

    • A CONVERSATION ABOUT CHRISTMAS . . . AND LIFE
      (pp. 141-146)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): It’s Christmas 2007 with a brand-new year hovering on the horizon. And who better to turn to for an inspiring vision of what’s to come than the fifty-second governor of New York. Listeners to this radio station know of our great admiration for Governor Mario M. Cuomo.

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): Thank you, Bill. Merry Christmas. Happy New Year. Happy Hanukkah. Happy Holidays. Whatever your strain of belief, disbelief, anticipation, anxiety, or desire, I embrace it and extend my hope for a bright future.

      W.O.: Governor, you used the word “happy” about five times. Are we happy?...

    • MARIO CUOMO, ESQ., TALKS ABOUT MARTHA STEWART, THE JUDICIAL SYSTEM, AND, ALWAYS, ABOUT MR. LINCOLN
      (pp. 147-152)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): The newspapers are filled with stories about Martha Stewart’s legal troubles, and she may go to jail. Our guest today, Mario Cuomo, a former governor of New York, has appointed hundreds of judges to the Appellate Division and to the New York State Supreme Court, and could himself have been sitting this very day on the Supreme Court of the United States of America. Governor, did you follow the Martha Stewart trial?

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): I followed it every day. My son Christopher, as a matter of fact, is covering it for ABC. I haven’t followed...

    • MARIO M. CUOMO ON THE DEATH PENALTY, SADDAM HUSSEIN, PRESIDENT BUSH, CHRISTMAS, AND GRANDCHILDREN
      (pp. 153-155)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): They found Saddam Hussein in a rat hole, and he will stand trial before some kind of tribunal. Would you represent him, lawyer Mario Cuomo?

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): Fortunately for him, Bill, that won’t be necessary. There’ll be other attorneys to represent him. I think a fair trial will conclude that he murdered many people. That much seems obvious from the evidence and his own confessions.

      He painted the crimes as required by his position or justified by conflict. But there is no question he slaughtered human beings, so there will be no suspense with respect...

    • MURRAY RICHMAN, ESQ., ON GUY VELELLA
      (pp. 156-158)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): ’Tis the Christmas season, but not for disgraced former state Senator Guy Velella, who goes back to jail on Monday.

      Joining us here in our studio is the famous criminal lawyer from New York state who was profiled in a seventeen-page article inThe New Yorker. His name is Murray Richman, and he knows Guy Velella well. Mr. Richman, what do you think about this decision by the Appellate Division to send Guy Velella back to the slammer?

      MURRAY RICHMAN (M.R.): I think it’s a travesty of justice. I was very active in the Velella case and...

    • DICK GIDRON: LEGENDARY CAR DEALER BACK IN ACTION, SUING GENERAL MOTORS FOR $150 MILLION!
      (pp. 159-165)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): This is Bill O’Shaughnessy in Studio 1A at One Broadcast Forum in New Rochelle. We are interviewing a special guest today. Dick Gidron, one of the most famous car dealers in America, epitomizes the Horatio Alger story. He’s joining us from his beautiful home in Scarsdale, where he entertains power brokers and celebrities. He called me earlier this week and said, “Listen, I have a story to tell. People have read a lot of stuff about me in the press, and some of it ain’t true.”

      Dick Gidron, what are you doing now? I understand you served...

    • BARBARA TAYLOR BRADFORD: “A WOMAN OF SUBSTANCE”
      (pp. 166-173)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): Today, we are visiting one of the great legends of publishing at her spectacular abode overlooking the East River in Manhattan, the great journalist, author, and writer Barbara Taylor Bradford. Mrs. Bradford, my wife, Nancy O’Shaughnessy, is crazy about you, and I am an admirer of your famous husband, Robert Bradford, the movie producer. Will you trust me to conduct myself fairly and properly? (laughter)

      BARBARA TAYLOR BRADFORD (B.T.B.): Of course I will, Bill! But, please, call me Barbara, as you do when the four of us are together of an evening. “Mrs. Bradford” makes me sound...

    • LOUIS CAPPELLI AT THE JACEE LYNN CAPPELLI DIABETES CENTER OF SOUND SHORE MEDICAL CENTER
      (pp. 174-176)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): Louis Cappelli, you’re successful, in every telling and by every account, as a developer. You could get a lot done and still be as successful as you are, without putting all this money back.

      LOUIS CAPPELLI (L.C.): Well, I think maybe I’m superstitious, first of all, and second, I do believe that if you make money—and it’s a privilege to make money—you have to give money. And in New Rochelle, White Plains, and other places where we are successful, I think it’s incumbent on every developer and successful businessman also to give back to the...

    • GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO ON A GRIM ELECTION DAY, 2004
      (pp. 177-182)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): It’s Election Day 2004 , with Bush against Kerry. Let’s switch now to Manhattan, to the wise Conscience of the Democratic Party. We had to wait in line because everyone in the country is calling him today: Governor Mario Cuomo. Thank you, sir. Did you vote?

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): I did, very early this morning, Bill, in the midst of a very large crowd, at six o’clock.

      W.O.: Governor, I hear you vote with a lot of Republicans!

      M.C.: Itlookedlike there were a lot of Republicans there this morning. And they seemed quite confident,...

    • MEETING STEVE FORBES AND GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO FOR “BREAKFAST AT ‘21’”
      (pp. 183-188)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): Steve Forbes, as we listen to you at “21” this morning, we have to say that “President Forbes” has a nice ring to it. Have you gotten that out of your system yet?

      STEVE FORBES (S.F.): Thevotersgot it out of my system! And I’m not going to run for president again, but I am in a happy position now of being an “outside agitator,” pushing things like tax reform and the like.

      W.O.: But you were almost president, Steve Forbes. You took a good run at it four years ago. Are you sorry you didn’t...

    • CHRIS MATTHEWS, “BREAKFAST AT ‘21’”
      (pp. 189-200)

      BRIAN MCGUIRE: Welcome to “21.” It’s October in New York, and that means post-season baseball in the Bronx and “wait until next year” in Queens. (laughter) This is another in our series of breakfasts at “21.” What began as a VIP program ushering in the millennium is now in its tenth year. Many of our distinguished speakers return as guests, and our special guest today is Chris Matthews, host of “Hardball with Chris Matthews,” which just celebrated its tenth anniversary on MSNBC. In addition to “Hardball,” he also hosts “The Chris Matthews Show” and is a contributor to NBC’s “Today”...

    • JOSEPH A. CALIFANO JR.
      (pp. 201-212)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): We’re going to switch now to Morningside Heights, the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University. The man who runs that has done a lot of things in his time on this planet. He ran the White House for President Lyndon Johnson. I didn’t know this, but they tried to get him to run for the U.S. Senate, after Senator Javits, of sainted memory. Jacob K. Javits left, and this man could have spared us Al D’Amato had he been persuaded to do that. They also wanted to run him for governor of New...

    • COMPOSER–SONGWRITER–SALOON SINGER: MURRAY GRAND AT EIGHTY-FIVE
      (pp. 213-224)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): We’re going to switch now to Fort Lauderdale. First of all, is it sunny?

      MURRAY GRAND (M.G.): It is today, which is rare. During the last three weeks, it was mostly rain and hurricanes. It was terrible, but today is beautiful.

      W.O.: The voice we’re hearing is the voice of one of the great composers, one of the great men of the theater—and I think of him as my favorite saloon singer: Murray Grand.

      “Guess Who I Saw Today?” Does that sound familiar?

      M.G.: I think so. I think somebody called Murray Grand wrote it.

      I...

    • GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO TALKS ABOUT JOHN EDWARDS AND HOW TO BRING PEACE TO IRAQ
      (pp. 225-229)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): The political season has begun, almost officially. John Kerry isn’t yet the nominee, but he’s said he would like to run with John Edwards, a senator from North Carolina.

      Let’s switch now to Willkie, Farr & Gallagher, the famous law firm in Manhattan, and its most illustrious partner, Mario Matthew Cuomo, the former governor of New York. Governor, what do you think of Kerry’s choice?

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): It’s a good one, for a lot of reasons. Edwards is obviously an excellent spokesperson, and that’s always useful. And of the four people in this race, he’s...

    • INTERVIEW WITH MARIAN B. JAVITS ON THE 100TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE BIRTH OF SENATOR JACOB K. JAVITS
      (pp. 230-245)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): There has been a relentlessly familiar and recurring theme in all my rants, raves, and preaching: “Where are the giants who once strode across our political landscape and walked the land?” On these two radio stations we have talked so often about Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller, Dwight David Eisenhower, Mario Cuomo, Jack Kennedy, Adlai Stevenson, Pat Moynihan. We’ve looked at the current crop of politicians and politicos, and so often they come up short. They certainly don’t measure up to those mythic figures of a few decades ago, where once giants walked the land.

      This is the month...

    • Photographs
      (pp. None)
    • “TRUE LOVE”: WARD QUAAL TALKS ABOUT PRESIDENT REAGAN
      (pp. 246-249)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): The flags are at half-staff all over the nation on this warm day because we have lost a president. And, it appears, a great one. Let’s go to Chicago, Illinois—the great Midwest, the heartland—to talk with a man who was an advisor to President Ronald Wilson Reagan, and also to Gerald Ford and Richard Nixon.

      His name is Ward Quaal. Mr. Quaal ran the legendary WGN, one of the mighty radio stations of this nation, for many years. He’s now an advisor to the powerful Tribune Company, which owns a lot of newspapers and television...

    • STATE SENATOR JOE PISANI TALKS ABOUT JEANINE PIRRO, POLITICS, AND HIS NEW LIFE
      (pp. 250-255)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): The summer is winding down, and maybe it’s a good thing, for this has been a mean political season. We’re talking with one of New York state’s most beloved and best-known political figures, Joseph Raymond Pisani. We caught up with Senator Joe in the Hudson Valley, and we switch now to his redoubt high above the mighty river. Senator Joe, what are you doing these days?

      SENATOR JOE PISANI (J.P.): I’m practicing law. And, thank God, I still have a lot of energy. I’m working hard every day, trying to right the wrongs and correct the injustices...

    • ANDY SPANO TALKS ABOUT WESTCHESTER MEDICAL CENTER, HOMELESS SHELTERS, HIS HAIR, AND HIS WIFE
      (pp. 256-267)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): Ladies and gentlemen, how nice to be with you. This is Bill O’Shaughnessy. You may remember me. It’s been a time since I’ve enjoyed the privilege of your hearth and home and your good, fine, bright minds. This is what the Brits would call a “brilliant” day; it may be one of the ten nicest days of the year!

      This is a special edition of “Westchester with O’Shaughnessy.” We were able today—thanks to Susan Tolchin—to beg a few moments of his schedule. He’s very busy, as you’ve read in the public press. Our guest for...

    • ROBERT J. GREY JR., PRESIDENT, AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION
      (pp. 268-285)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): It’s a perfectly splendid Indian Summer day, what the Brits would call a quite “brilliant” day.

      And for the next forty-five minutes or so, while we’re in your care and keeping, we’re going to present a very attractive man. I wish we had a damned television camera operating today. He’s sent from Central Casting, I’m afraid. He is president of the American Bar Association, the number one lawyer in the whole damn republic. His name is Robert Grey Jr. He hails from Richmond, Virginia, and he is in the Golden Apple to talk to some folks from...

    • JOHN SPICER
      (pp. 286-302)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): This is Bill O’Shaughnessy with a special edition of “Westchester Open Line.” We’re here live in our Westchester studios, flying airborne at 1460 on the right side of the dial and also at 93.5 on the FM.

      For our guests today, we do a double hit. For the next forty-five minutes while we are in your care and keeping, we’re going to be visiting with an individual I think is the essential—I can’t think of a better word—person in the entire southern Westchester region. He’s the president and CEO of the entity known as the...

    • MILT HOFFMAN
      (pp. 303-306)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): The week between Christmas and New Year’s is supposed to be quiet. Well, it’s anythingbutquiet at WVOX and WVIP, and this morning in our studios we are graced by the presence of the dean of Westchester journalists, Milton Hoffman.

      You will remember Mr. Hoffman, who was, for years and years, the political editor of Gannett Westchester and theJournal Newsand before that the Macy–Westchester Group. Milt was also editorial director of our good old reliable local-yokel newspapers.

      Milt Hoffman, I heard you on the radio with our Mike Dandry, and you were talking...

    • SY SYMS
      (pp. 307-314)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): Live in our Westchester studios we have Sy Syms, one of the preeminent merchant princes and retailers of America. With him is his daughter Marcy Syms, the president and chief operating officer of Syms stores. We’re very glad to have you both here. First of all, we’re trying to get you back, Sy, to your original career.

      SY SYMS (S.S.): Yes, my original career was to become a play-byplay broadcaster anywhere in the United States. When I went to school they didn’t call it communications; it was called radio broadcasting and production. My ultimate goal was to...

  9. PART III: AT THE PODIUM
    • DR. RICHARD ROCCO PISANO
      (pp. 317-319)

      Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the sixtieth-birthday celebration of a very special individual.

      First of all, thank you to his remarkable and indispensable wife, Kathy Pisano, for this lovely party. She is essential to his practice, his career, and his life. He knows it, and so do we all!

      There are all kinds of people here tonight: other doctors—his colleagues—city officials, relatives, in-laws, and even a few outlaws. So please humor me as I recount some things you may not know about Kathy’s husband.

      He was born August 16, 1944, on the Feast of Saint Rocco.

      Saint Rocco,...

    • REMARKS ON THE NEW ROCHELLE POLICE FOUNDATION
      (pp. 320-320)

      Nancy and I are glad you came.

      We share your admiration for our wonderful low-key but every effective Chairman Charlie McCabe; our great police commissioner of national renown, Pat Carroll; City Manager Chuck Strome; Chief Judge Sandy Scher; my fellow directors, who work so much harder at the foundation’s business than I do; and our next New York state assemblyman, Domenico Procopio! (laughter) (applause)

      In just a few short years, our Police Foundation has transformed law enforcement in our city. Thanks to your dedication and generosity, the lives of our officers have been enhanced, and their mission made easier. We...

    • FRÉDÉRIC FEKKAI AT LITTLE FLOWER CHILDREN AND FAMILY SERVICES
      (pp. 321-323)

      Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Metropolitan Club and the Humanitarian Award Dinner of Little Flower Children and Family Services.

      On behalf of Cornelia Guest and Carla Lawhon, our chairs; and Sigourney Weaver, Lorraine Bracco, and Heidi Klum, our honorary elders; we thank you for the generosity of your purse and the gift of your presence.

      Little Flower Children and Family Services was founded seventy-five years ago in a small, obscure Brooklyn parish in the Bed-Stuy section, and Herb Stupp, its gifted CEO, is an old friend, a colleague, a TV journalist and producer. We welcome you on his behalf...

    • THE ROBERT MERRILL POSTAL STATION
      (pp. 324-326)

      Marion Merrill: Bob’s accompanist, his partner, his muse, his beloved.

      And Nita Lowey, our superb and inexhaustible congresswoman. She has become a ranking “cardinal” in the House and one of its most powerful and effective members through her dynamism and keen intelligence. All of us here also know of her goodness.

      We thank Mrs. Lowey for exerting her influence and stature to unanimously enact Public Law 110–102: the renaming of the Wykagyl Post Office for Robert Merrill.

      And so we gather today on this dazzling spring morning with Marion, Congresswoman Lowey, and our brilliant young mayor, Noam Bramson.

      We...

    • ANDY ALBANESE: AN ICON PROPERLY RESTORED (WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM FOUR GOVERNORS!)
      (pp. 327-330)

      County Executive Andy O’Rourke; Assemblywoman Audrey Hochberg; Supervisor Jim Cavanaugh; Legislator Joe Delfino; Commissioner Ray Albanese; Supervisor Jim Doody; Council members Vicky Ford and Vito Pinto; Judge Dominick Porco; and Anthony J. Colavita Jr., the spitting image of his father. Also my pal Dave DiRubba.

      With a few exceptions, this is a very strong Republican group. And so I hesitate to remind you about the night in 1982 when I came home from Andy’s restaurant with a pizza and a thousand-dollar check for Mario Cuomo’s campaign! (laughter)

      Ladies and gentlemen, for you to allow an O’Shaughnessy to present himself at...

    • BRUCE SNYDER AT “21”
      (pp. 331-335)

      Ladies and gentlemen, I won’t intrude for very long on your evening. For one thing, I’ve got Bryan McGuire hovering over me. And for another, Nancy is on full battle alert whenever I approach a microphone.

      First of all, we want to thank you, Mr. McGuire, for this brilliant party as we honor an icon of our beloved “21” Club, Bruce Snyder. “21” is packed this night with your fans, and our remarks are being carried by closed circuit on every floor of this legendary saloon.

      We must also thank Mr. James Sherwood, Dr. Shirley Sherwood, and your colleagues at...

    • JOE MACARILLO AND THE SUN VALLEY TRIO
      (pp. 336-338)

      Ladies and gentlemen, I won’t intrude for very long on your evening or on Joe’s beautiful music.

      Nancy and I just flew in from New York, and on our first night in town we usually head straight for the Pio, Duffy Witmer’s Pioneer Saloon, saving this legendary Lodge Dining Room until later in the week. But this is a very special occasion.

      We’re here tonight, Joe, because we love you. And we love your sweet music.

      Thank you for all the memorable nights you’ve bestowed upon us, and for all the lovely songs.

      For fifty years you and the Sun...

    • MAESTRO SIRIO: THE RINGMASTER
      (pp. 339-343)

      On Thursday, glamour and style return to the New York dining scene. The great Sirio Maccioni, America’s quintessential restaurateur, returns to center stage with the third incarnation of his legendary Le Cirque, a New York institution.

      Sirio Maccioni is seventy-three. He may yet do something in Paris or Dubai. But even he knows this will be one of his last high-wire acts in the center ring of the great city where he has been a featured performer for so long. He begins this week on East 58th Street.

      The relentless clock reminds us it is 2006, and we are all...

    • SIRIO: THE BRIGHTEST STAR
      (pp. 344-346)

      New York is crammed with eateries employing a bevy of bimbos flanked by a dour, self-important maître d’ standing imperiously behind a lectern punching numbers into a computer. Think BLT Steak on 57th owned by moneyman Jimmy Haber, or Quality Meats on 58 th Street, and its cousin, The Post House, where the venerable Quo Vadis once shined.

      But this town still offers cozy restaurants with beckoning proprietors unaffected by “investors.” The permittees of these agreeable havens have names such as Arpaia, Burke, Niccolini, Carravagi, Von Bidder, Zuliani, Selimaj, Cipriani, Lomonaco, Masson, Tong, Dussin, McGuire, Viterale, Suric, Bruno, and, up...

    • ON THE GRILL
      (pp. 347-348)

      Twenty years is a pretty damn good run for an upscale, quality restaurant—or for any endeavor—in this turbulent day and age.

      Litchfield’s West Street Grill has survived the two tumultuous decades since its founding with grace and considerable style. Great style, in fact.

      The Grill has an enviable reputation among the proprietors’ colleagues in the hospitality profession and among our neighbors, most of whom love the bloody place.

      Its name and fame extend far beyond the Grill’s perfect and welcoming perch astride the historic Green in Litchfield.

      Charlie Kafferman is surely one of the nicest souls most of...

    • W. O. AS SPEECHWRITER
      (pp. 349-350)

      Your Excellencies, fellow honorees, and distinguished guests.

      You honor me. You honor my family. You honor my brothers, Cosimo, Giuseppe, and Antonio, and you honor all my associates at San Pietro and Sistina. And I am grateful for your kindness and generosity.

      I’m a child of Italy, with a father who, to this very day, produces olive oil and grows his own tomatoes in the hill town of Monte Corvino Rovella.

      My friends in New York have sustained us at San Pietro for fifteen years and at Sistina for twenty-five years. In my profession, that’s a pretty good run!

      I...

    • JUDGE YE NOT
      (pp. 351-354)

      On the façade of the Federal Courthouse at Foley Square in lower Manhattan are chiseled these words: “The True Administration of Justice Is the Firmest Pillar of Good Government.”

      It’s a long way away from New Rochelle. But the majestic words of that noble pronouncement apply to our home heath as well.

      In our city, we are blessed with eminent institutions, including a great regional medical center; three colleges, College of New Rochelle, Iona College, and Monroe College; and three extraordinary prep schools, Ursuline, Iona, and Thornton-Donovan. Our great school system and enlightened city government are unsurpassed in New York...

    • SEPTEMBER SONG: WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM HER “FRIENDS”
      (pp. 355-358)

      Kitty Carlisle Hart, age ninety-four-and-a-half, stood in the spotlight last night at Feinstein’s in the Regency Hotel on Park Avenue in Manhattan, a most fitting venue for this particular, spectacular dame. The New York newspapers call her an “uber diva.” And Liz Smith says she’s got the best pair of legs in New York.

      For her opening number, Mrs. Hart proclaimed to her adoring fans, “Hello, old friends. Are you O.K., old friends? Who’s like us? Damn few!”

      Her “old friends” being Cole Porter, Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart, George Gershwin, Oscar Hammerstein, Harold Arlen, Alan Jay Lerner, Arthur Schwartz, and...

    • THE “UBER DIVA”
      (pp. 359-360)

      The columnist Liz Smith, no slouch in the glamour girl department, says Kitty Carlisle Hart has the best pair of legs in New York.

      And last night, the ninety-five-year-old woman stood in the spotlight with a spectacular figure and those exquisite hands, just some of the equipment she uses to define and weave magic into the classic, timeless songs she learned from George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, and Jerome Kern. What she said charmed audiences, as she has done throughout her career and life:

      I’ve just celebrated my birthday, darlings. I’m ninety-five. George Abbott lived to be 107—which...

    • TALESE THE WRITER
      (pp. 361-363)

      Maybe you think you’ve got a budding author in the family? A condition that never threatened my old man.

      Well, O.K., it only costs around $50, 000 a year—just for the tuition—at the Columbia School of Journalism. If your kid is so inclined, you could always contact the “J” School and pay off the tab for the next five years.

      Or you could just shell out twenty-six bucks and buy the kid a copy ofA Writer’s Lifeby Gay Talese, the great New York journalist, reporter, and author.

      Mr. Talese, whose earlier magazine pieces on Frank Sinatra,...

    • MOUNT ST. MARY COLLEGE 46TH COMMENCEMENT CEREMONY
      (pp. 364-369)

      Mr. Chairman John Donoghue;

      Father President Kevin Mackin, a great educator, a magnificent priest, a Franciscan, which says it all . . . ;

      Sister Ann, who served this Hudson Valley treasure so well and with such dedication . . . ;

      Mr. Jack Abernethy of Fox Television, a statesman of our profession of national reputation, a child of the Hudson Valley in whom we are all so well pleased by his high estate at Fox Television and Broadcasting . . . ;

      Distinguished Faculty of Mount Saint Mary . . . ;

      InfluentialTrustees,the guardians and sustainers of...

    • “THE FUTURE IS HERE . . . BEHOLD THE FUTURE!”
      (pp. 370-381)

      THE HON. NITA LOWEY: This is a real honor for me. Never before in the twenty years I have been your congressperson have I been asked to be the “warm-up band” for the great Bill O’Shaughnessy. I have to tell you it’s an impossible task because Bill O’Shaughnessy is New Rochelle. He has been involved in New Rochelle, loving New Rochelle, committed to New Rochelle for as long as I can remember. So I did want to thank him for all he has done to create such excitement. It also takes a team to do all this, and I’m glad...

    • FOUR SEASONS ROAST: 50TH ANNIVERSARY
      (pp. 382-385)

      Welcome to a very special New York evening.

      We gather on this spring night to celebrate the spectacular fifty-year run of this glorious high-class saloon.

      How wonderful it is to be here, and for a good cause: Citymeals-on-Wheels.

      So permit me to thank you for the gift of your presence and the generosity of your purse.

      We thank our hosts: Julian Niccolini and Alex Von Bidder, who’ve rounded up 250 of their nearest and dearest for this sold-out historic evening.

      We eagerly anticipate their comeuppance at the hands of some of the most vivid and powerful among our well-founded neighbors...

    • ELIOT SPITZER, ONCE AND FORMER GOVERNOR
      (pp. 386-387)

      It is an excruciating personal tragedy for the Governor, his family and the rest of our society to whom he has meant so much.

      Governor Mario Cuomo

      Once again Mario Cuomo got it exactly right. The great philosopher-statesman who once occupied the high office Eliot Spitzer [is relinquishing] framed this bizarre episode with precision and his usual compassion.

      All the editorial writers and every journal in the land have relentlessly denounced Eliot Spitzer in recent days. But as he who held so much promise steps down in disgrace, my mind drifts back to a conversation we had some years ago...

    • LOWEY FOR CONGRESS: WHERE ONCE GIANTS WALKED THE LAND
      (pp. 388-391)

      The 20th Congressional District of Westchester always did have a proud, consistenttraditionof designating superior and enlightened individuals as our federal representatives: Ogden Rogers Reid, publisher of theHerald Tribuneand our first ambassador to a brave, growing nation called Israel. And Richard Ottinger, a relentless environmental champion, law professor, and tilter at Establishment windmills. Both came to our service from great families with long histories of public service.

      And our country squire neighbors to the north had the good sense to designate Hamilton Fish, a moderate Republican and a respected hero of Watergate, who is enormously popular among...

    • LATIMER FOR ASSEMBLY
      (pp. 392-393)

      In the thirty-five years we’ve presumed to endorse and recommend candidates for public office, this is the easiest choice we’ve ever had to make: George Latimer is one of the finest political figures we’ve encountered in almost four decades.

      Mr. Latimer served with distinction as chairman of the Westchester County Legislature and, briefly, as County Democratic chairman. This wonderfully appealing and good-natured man is almost thecomplete oppositeof the greedy, selfish, upwardly mobile politicos who populate the body politic in this day and age. Especially at the local level.

      George Latimer is a master of constituent service. It comes...

    • THE LAST PUBLIC REMARKS OF OSSIE DAVIS
      (pp. 394-399)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY: Welcome to the Lincoln Hall Annual Dinner. Thank you for the generosity of your purse and your willingness to leave hearth and home for a noble purpose. I’m reminded—as the late New York Governor Malcolm Wilson once observed—that I am, as the program indicates, the only one standing between you and your dinner (laughter), and I plan to extricate myself from that position promptly and expeditiously, if not deftly. (applause)

      We’re here tonight, ladies and gentlemen, because no one in my home can resist a summons from Nancy Curry O’Shaughnessy, our dinner chair. (applause)

      The towering...

    • BROADCASTERS FOUNDATION OF AMERICA REMARKS OF BARBARA TAYLOR BRADFORD, AMBASSADOR OGDEN ROGERS REID, AND CHAIRMAN PHIL LOMBARDO
      (pp. 400-406)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY: Welcome to the American Yacht Club. Here, tonight, at the country’s most hallowed and revered sailing venue, we honor the Broadcasters Foundation and those directors and benefactors who have done so much, in so many generous and tangible ways, for the Broadcasters Foundation of America.

      First of all, be assured this isnota fundraiser but only a wonderful and becoming gesture by Nancy O’Shaughnessy, who, five years ago, put together some of our New York, Westchester, and Connecticut friends to spend a delightful evening here in the Golden Apple with some of America’s leading broadcasters. We’re grateful...

    • JEANINE PIRRO AT THE DUTCH TREAT CLUB
      (pp. 407-414)

      WILLIAM O’ SHAUGHNESSY: Ladies and gentlemen, I have to tread carefully here. Because I was asked to introduce the district attorney since our estimable Ralph Graves, the president of the Dutch Treat Club, is in Florida. So I initially agreed, but after hanging up, I thought, “Don’t go there, O’Shaughnessy. You should call in sick that day.”

      Because, you see, I had previously introduced Gloria Steinem to a thousand broadcasters in Cooperstown, near the Baseball Hall of Fame. And I blithely said, “She is as beautiful and attractive as she is bright and able.” And Ms. Steinem fixed me with...

    • MARIO CUOMO AT THE DUTCH TREAT CLUB, 100TH ANNIVERSARY
      (pp. 415-424)

      WILLIAM O’ SHAUGHNESSY: Our great E. Nobles Lowe, John Donnelly, and Ted Crane met at Sardi’s last summer to find a worthy keynote speaker for this historic occasion. The governor was their first, second, and third choice. So they didn’t leave us too much running room!

      He is a unique public figure who wasn’t enticed by the Supreme Court of the land or the presidency itself. But he is by our invitation. And we’re so glad he’s here.

      TheBoston Globecalls him “our foremost philosopher-statesman.” A college president labeled him “the greatest thinker of the twentieth century.” I can’t...

    • MARIO CUOMO AT THE DUTCH TREAT CLUB, 104TH ANNIVERSARY
      (pp. 425-442)

      WILLIAM O’ SHAUGHNESSY: Our altogether distinguished speaker is known and admired for many things. That theBoston Globeaccused him of being “the great philosopher-statesman of the American nation” is known to everyone here assembled. I mean, you justknowthese things! (laughter) He is also, I should tell you, a famousfatherand an illustrioushusband. He’s thefatherof the star of ABC’s “Good Morning, America,” Chris Cuomo. He’s thefatherof Maria Cuomo, the dazzling head of Housing Enterprise for the Less Privileged (H.E.L.P.), the largest provider of homeless housing in the world. He’s thehusbandof...

    • Photographs
      (pp. None)
    • THOUGHTS IN THE SUMMER OF 2006, BY MARIO M. CUOMO
      (pp. 443-458)

      For the last six years, and for most of the last quarter of a century, a Republican president and conservative politics have dominated the nation’s government.

      They have created a bonanza for the top 1 percent of our taxpayers while the overwhelming majority of our workers struggle to avoid sliding backward. The number of poor Americans has grown to 37 million, more than one out of ten, and 13 million of them are children. That’s four times the number of all the children in Illinois.

      They have squandered the nation’s wealth, burdening us with the highest debt and trade deficits...

    • MARIO CUOMO’S OMEGA SOCIETY SPEECH: A MEDITATION ON ULTIMATE VALUES
      (pp. 459-464)

      When I was asked to give the closing remarks tonight, I hesitated because of the intelligent, distinguished, and articulate individuals slated to appear before me.

      The representative of Omega insisted, “Your input as a three-term governor could be especially relevant given the frightening implications of 9/11 .”

      So I agreed to try.

      Actually, I once offered similar observations at a conference titled “Who or What Is God?”

      I addressed the question then, as I do now, as an ordinary New Yorker from Queens, who grew up in a poor and middle-class neighborhood with asphalt streets and stickball, and earned a...

    • LESLEY STAHL INTERVIEWS GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO FOR “BREAKFAST AT ‘21’”
      (pp. 465-470)

      LESLEY STAHL (L.S.): Governor Cuomo, let’s start off with the State of the Union address. Give us your analysis of how you think President Bush did last night. The president really had his spinach!

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): Well, if he did well in your opinion because he had his spinach, I would suggest next time he try escarole! (laughter) There are two Republicans I think we should consider when judging this campaign: Abe Lincoln and Ronald Reagan.

      And Ronald Reagan may be the most relevant because he gave us a test when he said [in 1980], “Ask yourself whether...

    • ADVICE FOR PRESIDENT OBAMA FROM PRESIDENT LINCOLN VIA GOVERNOR CUOMO
      (pp. 471-474)

      On February 12, three weeks into the administration of our forty-fourth president, Barack Obama, America will mark the two hundredth birthday of our sixteenth president, Abraham Lincoln—considered by most historians to be our greatest president ever.

      The competition by presidents and presidential candidates to claim the mantle of Lincoln in ways big and small has come to embrace all political faiths. Obama is no exception. He will be the first president to be sworn in on the same Bible used by Lincoln in 1861, having arrived in Washington from Philadelphia by train as Lincoln had, and he has mentioned...

    • MARIO CUOMO’S REMARKS ON THE OCCASION OF JIMMY BRESLIN’S 70TH BIRTHDAY
      (pp. 475-477)

      I’m not eager to go out to events at night. Like a lot of other people, my day’s work is sufficiently challenging to make me look forward to quiet evenings at home. It takes a really good reason to get me out, so when Pete Hamill called and told me that on December 7 there would be an event at night to honor Jimmy for his sixty years as a writer, I wanted to be sure it was real.

      I asked Pete, “Does Jimmy know?”

      And he said, “Yeah, he’s all for it.”

      At first it didn’t sound right to...

    • “REASON TO BELIEVE”: LIFE LESSONS—MARIO M. CUOMO AT THE 92ND STREET Y
      (pp. 478-484)

      When Susan Engel suggested that I share with you what I have learned about life and politics that I believe is most relevant, I told her I wasn’t convinced I could add significantly to the already considerable wisdom of a 92nd Street Y audience.

      Susan handled that concern by pointing out that she was reserving a block of time for questions and observations from theaudience—and they,the audience, would assure we would hear at leastsomestimulating intelligence before the night was over.

      And so I agreed to talk about some of the things I have learned over...

    • INTERVIEW WITH GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO RE: THE SUPREME COURT, SENATOR ROBERT BYRD, LARRY KING, ANDREW CUOMO, AND THE BP OIL SPILL, JULY 2, 2010
      (pp. 485-495)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): Before we all go off to see the rockets’ red glare and fireworks on the Fourth of July, let’s switch to Willkie, Farr & Gallagher, the prestigious New York law firm, and its most illustrious partner, the fifty-second governor of New York, Mario Matthew Cuomo. Governor Cuomo, there’s much we want to seek your wisdom on this Fourth of July weekend. First of all, the people in Washington are wrestling with the question of another Supreme Court justice: Elena Kagan. Will she be a good justice?

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): That’s a really complicated question, Bill, because...

    • SIR LAURENCE OLIVIER
      (pp. 496-496)

      In the multiplicity of your nation’s goodnesses, this demonstration of it must make it seem that at times such prodigality must surely be in danger of overlapping itself. But never, it seems, does it fall or falter.

      This new star in its firmament must outshine the suns of all men’s days and render the one thus shone upon quite dumb, jawdroppedly mute in the face of its blaze.

      My heart is indeed so full as to be in danger of overflowing and causing my desperate struggle for expression to drown itself in dismal helplessness and drown you in most painful...

  10. PART IV: 30:: WHEN ALL IS SAID AND DONE
    • FOR MICHAEL
      (pp. 499-503)

      First of all, thank you for coming.

      Many of you have canceled plans; some have cut short vacations; and others have completely rearranged your schedules on this winter weekend. And we appreciate it.

      You’ve come to comfort Nancy. And because you loved Michael. And he is glad you came.

      I want to also thank two great priests of our Roman Catholic Church: the beloved pastor of St. Pius, who meant so much in Papa’s life and who was the first to call Mr. Curry “Lazarus” after that remarkable comeback three years ago. Father John O’Brien’s intercessions and prayers helped then,...

    • REMARKS OF FATHER JOHN O’BRIEN FOR MICHAEL PASQUALE
      (pp. 504-507)

      Nancy, I can’t tell you the depth of feeling I have within myself, and I can only imagine the depth of feeling that’s present inyouand each one of us who has gathered together on this occasion of Michael’s entrance into heaven. An occasion you never, ever dreamt you would be present at. You thought, for sure, that perhaps you would be on the other side, welcominghimto the shores of heaven.

      Just a little over two months ago, we gathered together here, in the morning, and we prayed for yourfather, age eighty-four, who had gone to...

    • LARGER THAN LIFE: DEPARTED SOULS WHO SPEAK TO US STILL
      (pp. 508-511)

      I escaped from the microphone for a few days last week to stroll along a deserted winter beach with a pretty girl who lost her father last month.

      Bernard F. Curry Jr.—Nancy called him “Papa”—was an extraordinary man, personally, professionally, and physically.

      At six feet four inches, he was larger than life.

      The great Mario Cuomo sized up the man and nicknamed him “Paul Bunyan.” Papa, who was always a little more politically “conservative” than his loved ones, returned the favor by calling Mr. Cuomo “Robin Hood”!

      As a broadcaster, I encounter many other vivid souls who left...

    • MR. MARA OF THE NEW YORK GIANTS
      (pp. 512-514)

      He went out a winner.

      On Sunday, the New York Giants came from behind in the final minutes to beat the Denver Broncos 24–23. And at his home at 67 Park Drive South in Rye, the eighty-nine-year-old Wellington Mara watched the game through a haze of painkillers and medication. The elderly man with the cherubic smile and dancing eyes was in the final hours of an extraordinary life. He was comforted by those who loved him the most, but dying is something you have to do all by yourself.

      After he left us early Tuesday morning, October 25, Mr....

    • “AN IRISHMAN NAMED WELLINGTON WHOSE FATHER WAS A BOOKMAKER”: EULOGY TO HIS FATHER BY JOHN MARA AT ST. PATRICK’S CATHEDRAL
      (pp. 515-519)

      On behalf of my mother and our family, I want to thank everyone here to celebrate my father’s life. Many of you came from far away, and we are very appreciative. The outpouring of love and affection for my father has been overwhelming.

      Also, special thanks to Edward Cardinal Egan for his comforting words; Bishop McCormick, who brought him communion; and Frank Gifford, who has been a true friend to my family for so many years.

      Thank you also to those at Sloan-Kettering who took such good care of my father the last six weeks. They treated him as if...

    • KIRBY
      (pp. 520-521)

      The cell phone rang as I sat at P. J. Clarke’s bar talking to four Catholic priests who work by day as hospital chaplains. They know about death even on this particular Easter Sunday night. Richard Littlejohn, our veteran overnight and weekend manager, only calls with bad news. “I’m sorry to ruin your Easter, Mr. O’.”

      “Who is it, Rich?”

      “Bill Scollon; they found him on the floor in his apartment.”

      That’s how I learned William Kirby Scollon died alone a few days before Easter. He was a slight, elfin little guy with dancing eyes and a stunning intellect who...

    • DR. STANTON OF CBS
      (pp. 522-522)

      When I read of Frank Stanton’s passing, my mind drifted back to a New York afternoon long ago.

      The venue was the fabled bar at the “21” Club.

      Several network executives were discussing the preeminence of CBS and its lofty reputation as “the Tiffany network.” Mind you, this was back a few years.

      Wally Schwartz, president of ABC Television; his cohorts George Williams of WABC and Ed McLaughlin, who headed the ABC Radio Network; John Van Buren Sullivan, the classy majordomo of WNEW Radio of sainted memory; Bill Grimes of CBS; plus a few suits from NBC, were all in...

    • NANCY Q. KEEFE: A REMEMBRANCE
      (pp. 523-523)

      Nancy Q. Keefe was the preeminent print journalist of her time in Westchester County, in the Heart of the Eastern Establishment.

      She would sit at a Gannett typewriter and fashion words into strong, muscular sentences to make people think and reconcile differences.

      She championed many worthy, and often unpopular, causes such as homeless shelters, and supported political candidates who got past her “Bozo” meter. And for about fifty years, she wrote for theBerkshire Eagle, in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.

      Keefe loved Mario Cuomo and helped persuade him not to run for president, because she believed a good man cannot keep his...

    • MAMA ROSE MIGLIUCCI: “THE FIRST LADY OF LITTLE ITALY”
      (pp. 524-528)

      May it please you, Reverend Father Eric Rapaglia . . .

      Your posting as pastor here at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel is a great gift from His Eminence, for the parish and for the neighborhood.

      And Mama Rose would have been so pleased by the presence on the altar of Monsignor Bill O’Brien, the legendary founder and chairman of Daytop Village, who enjoys a well-deserved international reputation; and also Father Sebastian Bacatan, the parochial vicar of St. Pius X, where he serves the “underprivileged,” the “poor” and “distressed” of Scarsdale, N.Y., with another great priest, Father John O’Brien.

      Actually,...

    • ROBERT MERRILL (1917–2004)
      (pp. 529-530)

      The great baritone Robert Merrill, my Westchester neighbor and a beloved member of the Dutch Treat Club since 1946, died at his home while watching the first game of the 2004 World Series. He joined the Dutch Treat (DT) Club soon after his Metropolitan Opera debut, and it remained a constant for the rest of his life. We both lived in New Rochelle and often, around eleven o’clock on a Tuesday morning, he would call me and say, “Let’s go into town.”

      The DT elders would try to seat him at the head table at our prestigious luncheon club. But...

    • EMIL PAOLUCCI: “THE MAESTRO”
      (pp. 531-532)

      Professionally, he was known as Emil Powell. Some even called him “Maestro.” But we knew him as Emil Paolucci. He was of the neighborhood.

      Emil kept the music playing for a long, long time. He was eighty-eight when he died over the weekend in Florida.

      As a bandleader and gifted sideman, Emil Paolucci accompanied our seasonal celebrations and courting rites in dance halls and pavilions, at country clubs and cotillions, outdoors at Hudson Park on warm summer nights, in theaters, recording studios, and concerts and church socials in musty school gymnasiums. And always at weddings, bar mitzvahs, and charity dinners....

    • A WINTER’S TALE OF FATHERS AND SONS
      (pp. 533-534)

      When Rob Taishoff called to tell me his father, Larry Taishoff, had died, my mind drifted back to a New York afternoon long ago.

      I was supposed to be “on assignment”—read: selling radio ads—for John Van Buren Sullivan, the majordomo of the fabled WNEW. Instead, I had somehow found my way to a barstool at the esteemed establishment owned by the late Bernard “Toots” Shor on 52nd Street in Manhattan.

      On this particular day, this glorious saloon was also hosting the writers Bob Considine and Jimmy Cannon; Ford Frick, the former commissioner of major league baseball; and General...

    • LAWRENCE BRUCE TAISHOFF (1933–2006)
      (pp. 535-537)

      It is impossible to talk about Larry without speaking in the same breath about his father, Sol, and ofBroadcastingmagazine, inspired by both of them. All three were inseparable. Sol was first generation, an immigrant in swaddling clothes. Larry was second generation and literally lived in the fast lane, a flamboyant Jay Gatsby, tooling around in a British sports car.

      I’ve always been struck by the parallels between the Taishoffs and the Paley family of CBS. Sam Paley, father of the founder, was born in the Ukraine and began a successful cigar company after coming here. Sol had lived...

    • JEAN ENSIGN
      (pp. 538-538)

      Jean Ensign was a classy woman, a first-rate broadcast executive, and a hell of an actress.

      She stood out from the pack in our own profession as a woman of breeding, manners, and erudition.

      An inspiration and role model to hundreds of young people, she had her own special vocabulary. If Jean was not enamored of something, she would pronounce it “quite drodsome” (which marvelous word is not to be found in any dictionary, but is absolutely perfect). And she once described a broadcasting station in her care and keeping as “a pristine jewel of a radio station with just...

    • “A DEATH IN THE FAMILY”: TIM RUSSERT
      (pp. 539-543)

      His father, immortalized in an endearing and bestselling book, collected garbage and trash from the hard, bleak streets of south Buffalo. And if you came out of that dwindling city in western New York, as I did, you will recognize Tim Russert as a child of the neighborhood.

      If you’re listening to this in Yonkers (where true love conquers), the Bronx, or even Peekskill or Mamaroneck, you will also feel a kinship with the television journalist who collapsed and died in a studio in Washington Friday afternoon. Timothy John Russert Jr. was the best of what we are as broadcasters....

    • PAUL J. CURRAN
      (pp. 544-547)

      The early morning skies over Manhattan were darkening as a west wind came over the Hudson and blew across the concrete and glass canyons on Tuesday, September 9, 2008.

      On Fifth Avenue directly opposite Rockefeller Center, the great and the good of New York politics, law, and philanthropy came to St. Patrick’s Cathedral to say farewell to Paul Jerome Curran. He was the last Catholic mandarin of the legal profession, and he died last week in a hospital room after the good part of seventy-five years as a prosecutor, corruption fighter, assemblyman, civic leader, U.S. Attorney, and icon of the...

    • EDWARD J. “NED” GERRITY JR. (1924–2009)
      (pp. 548-553)

      May it please you, Reverend Fathers: Monsignor Patrick Boyle, the beloved pastor of this historic church; and an old friend of the Gerrity family, Father Mark Connolly, a great communicator and host of his own coast-to-coast radio program. I will intrude only briefly on this sad morning.

      Edward, you are your father’s son. I am capable of no higher compliment.

      You know, Nedplannedthis whole thing in his final days!

      Heknew— he justknew— all of you would be here in this great church. And he is glad you came, as are Nadia and Katharine and Edward III,...

    • A DAUGHTER’S LAST BREATH, BY JIMMY BRESLIN
      (pp. 554-555)

      Rosemary Breslin, forty-seven, died Monday from a rare blood disease. A writer who crafted scripts for “NYPD Blue” and wrote a 1997 memoir titledNot Exactly What I Had in Mind: An Incurable Love Story, Breslin was the third child of columnist Jimmy Breslin and the former Rosemary Dattolico, who died in 1981.

      As it was with the mother who went before her, the last breath for the daughter was made before an onlooker with frightened eyes.

      First, there were several labored breaths.

      And here in the hospital room, in a sight not distorted by passion, was the mother sitting...

    • GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO EULOGIZES BILL MODELL
      (pp. 556-558)

      We all repeat ourselves—but Bill sings a chorus!

      It’s a cold, clear morning, but one of our brightest lights, who has warmed and enlightened us all, is gone.

      Leo Rosten, the famous Jewish writer and philosopher, tells us when death summons a man to appear before his Creator, his greatest advantage will come from his good deeds.

      The tsunami of newspaper stories describing Bill’s passing call him a “titan of industry” because he transformed Modell’s from four stores in New York City to 136 stores in eleven states. He took a modest family retail business and, with the help...

    • JACK NEWFIELD, BY JIMMY BRESLIN
      (pp. 559-560)

      We bury Newfield today in a meadow on Long Island. It is just as well we do it today. It ends his suffering from a disease that thousands of stories later, still kills as it has for hundreds of years.

      And it is just as well he gets peace now because he was being choked by rages at a life around him that he knew deserved only his hatred.

      All those years he wrote and talked and demonstrated against a war in Asia that killed 58, 000 of our young. Our best hope, his best hope, Robert Kennedy, was assassinated....

    • JACK NEWFIELD EULOGIZED BY MARIO M. CUOMO
      (pp. 561-562)

      I’m one of Jack’s older friends who strived to stay on his good side because I expected to receive rather than give his eulogy.

      Staying on Jack’s good side was prudent for politicians, too; it might not provide immunity, but it might offer a little clemency.

      And I’m sorry for all of us because we lost one of our era’s most courageous and compelling journalists, a champion of justice when we needed one most.

      Since their first tentative steps into politics, the Cuomos have admired and respected the Newfields. After forty years and thousands of conversations about politics, sports, and...

    • TRIBUTES TO TONY MALARA
      (pp. 563-569)

      MARIO CUOMO: I’m batting ninth in this morning’s lineup. I hope Tony didn’t write out the batting order and put me there. That would make it very difficult for me to be as generous to him as he deserves.

      Most Italian young men want to be good-looking, accomplished, smart, and funny. The first eight speakers covered the “funny” part of Tony Malara, but I want to take a more serious tack.

      When I was governor, Tony said, “You know, Gov, you always come across as very serious.” I was troubled by this observation, and replied, “Do you think it’s a...

    • TONY MALARA
      (pp. 570-573)

      Monsignor, Father Robinson, Deacon Mastelon, friends.

      We are here to celebrate the life of our remarkable colleague.

      Anthony C. Malara was a legend, and it is a daunting task to adequately describe him. He radiated a larger-than-life persona you encounter once in a lifetime if you are lucky. We called him our “BIG PAPI” because he left an indelible imprint on everyone who crossed his path.

      Upstate New York is often overshadowed by the bright lights of New York City, but our beloved Tony Malara rocketed himself from Watertown to outshine them all. His gregarious personality put everyone at ease,...

    • “TONY”
      (pp. 574-574)

      Tony Malara wassui generis. . . unique and able to be defined only on his own terms. I never encountered an individual who wasn’t crazy about the guy.

      Joe Reilly, Dan Rather, Charlie Osgood, and the great Mario Cuomo have spoken of him much more gracefully than I am able. Malara was a pure, natural force. As an emcee, he was one of the two or three best I’ve observed in front of a crowd. His talent at the podium was informed not alone by the rapier-sharp quickness of his wit but also by the genuine warmth of his...

    • GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO ON WILLIAM F. BUCKLEY JR.
      (pp. 575-576)

      WILLIAM O’SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): Governor Cuomo, you and William Buckley are both wordsmiths. Was he a pretty tough guy in a debate?

      GOVERNOR MARIO CUOMO (M.C.): Extremely. His was a very subtle and profound intelligence. And he was well read and knowledgeable. Even at a very young age, when he attended Yale and wrote his first well-known book. Buckley was a grandmaster of the English language.

      When I debated him in Cincinnati recently, he announced it was the last time he would ever debate publicly. We had a lot of fun, but I was beguiled by his elaborate syntax. I enjoyed...

    • FUNERAL SERVICE FOR OSSIE DAVIS
      (pp. 577-585)

      EARL GRAVES: Welcome to our farewell to “Ossie.” For that’s all you had to say, and people knew you were talking about Ossie Davis.

      You could tell from the big smile they gave you, just about anywhere in the nation. There was only one Ossie if you lived in Harlem, where his distinguished stage career began sixty years ago, or at Howard University, or the state of Georgia, or Bedford-Stuyvesant, or St. Louis, or Sag Harbor, or Detroit, or Chicago’s South Side, or even Beverly Hills.

      And wherever you come from or wherever you’ve been since his passing, if two...

    • Photographs
      (pp. None)
    • THE SIMPLE PRIEST
      (pp. 586-589)

      John O’Brien was a priest of the Roman Church according to the ancient order. He had a marvelous gift, and not since Monsignor Ed Connors have we had someone stand up in front of a Westchester congregation to preach about the carpenter’s son with as much grace and eloquence.

      O’Brien, a gentle man, spoke with a raspy, gritty croak caused by the thousands of cigarettes that killed him. But he reached into many hearts with that great gift of expression that accompanied him when he went to work in a church.

      He was a Christian Brother for many years before...

    • MARIO CUOMO SPEAKS OF SENATOR TED KENNEDY
      (pp. 590-593)

      WILLIAM O’ SHAUGHNESSY (W.O.): Governor, Ted Kennedy—the “Lion of the Senate”—has gone to another and, we’re sure, a better world. You’ve been interviewed by media from all over the world. Your office tells me you’ve received calls from just about everywhere inquiring about Kennedy. What about his legacy?

      MARIO M. CUOMO (M.C.): You said an interesting thing, Bill; you said he’s gone to a better world. I suspect he’s gone to a world that he’s going tomakebetter because that’s what he did while he was here. He was a true believer in giving service, in the...

    • JOHN BRANCA
      (pp. 594-628)

      John Branca, who died this week in Florida at eighty-six, was a beloved Mount Vernon icon. Many knew him as the brother of the legendary Brooklyn Dodger Ralph Branca. But John Branca put up a lot of numbers on the scoreboard of life all on his very own. And for all his laurels and high estate in the world of politics and sports, Johnny Branca was a Westchester townie.

      Although he spent his last years in Florida pushing a market basket through Walgreen’s and flirting with the silver-haired widows in the Piggly Wiggly supermarket, John Branca will long be remembered...

  11. EPILOGUE: MORE RIFFS, RANTS, AND RAVES (SUMMER EDITION)
    (pp. 597-660)

    My third book,More Riffs, Rants, and Raves,like the two before it, was acclaimed far beyond its due. I hated the title, but I’ll use it now as a reprise for our annual “End of Summer” column. As the days dwindle down, here then are some meandering thoughts from my notebook:

    Just asking: Is it possible George W. Bush may have been right all along? I mean, could he actually be a hell of a lot better president than his critics believe?

    The rave reviews for Andrew M. Cuomo as attorney general surprised everyone. But not his father or...

  12. INDEX
    (pp. 661-700)