dispatches

ne day to ride a train from his London home to the far end of Asia, pioneering in the process a genre of take-no-prisoners travel writing. But no fair-minded reader can question Theroux’s authority. With homes in Cape Cod and Oahu, his American roots run deep. Yet in his constant travels, he is hardly an innocent abroad. From the time he left Massachusetts for the Peace Corps in Malawi in the 1960s, he has gotten, and gets, as close to the real world as anyone can.
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In America / Essays / Paul Theroux

Of Turbans and Neckties :
Why Past Defines Present

In a profession that treasures its heroes, ask any correspondent about Kif, John Kifner of the New York Times. After editing his Williams College paper, he joined the Times as a copy boy in 1963 and badgered his bosses for reporting assignments. Soon, he was a star. With ingenuity, endless energy, and his fabled war bag always packed by the door, he moves at warp speed. An impish grin and persistence win over sources. A mastery of world realities underlies his work. Mostly, Kif is a reporter’s reporter, who knows the value of seeing the story up close. He belongs to a breed that recognizes its own. Late one night on a train from Bucharest, after covering Nicolae Ceausescu’s fall, he watched a newsmagazine correspondent pad to the washroom with slippers, pajamas, robe, and toothbrush glass. “That guy,” he remarked with a laugh to a colleague sharing the Scotch, “is going to be an editor.”
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In America / Essays / John Kifner

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