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I was born and reared in Brooklyn, N.Y., in a small boating community that — in the 1950s — looked a lot like Naples without the palm trees. I entered Brooklyn College in 1970, but the first five years of the '70s was still the '60s, so I was way too busy traveling and experimenting with life to get a degree.

I always wrote. When I was in grade school, we used to listen to a Board of Education-produced news show called, "Let's Look at the News." Students were encouraged to write in letters addressing issues. We all did that. It was a sign of the times. Remember, that I was 9 -- almost 10 -- when the Cuban Missile Crisis went down, and we all thought the world was coming to an end. It was the defining moment of my life.

While my first "grown-up" job was in Jerusalem in 1973 just after the Yom Kippur War, I spent most of the 1970s writing poetry. I was a travel writer during the 1980s and early 1990s, mostly covering Asia, the South Pacific and the Caribbean.

My spare time is spent exploring the same subjects and issues that have always fascinated me: geotectonics, spiritual belief systems, love, the anthropology of food. The latter is nicer than saying I obsessively collect and read cookbooks.

Favorite quote: "Humility is not thinking less of yourself. It is thinking of yourself less."

Position History

  • Staff Writer
    02/01/2001 - 02/16/2010

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