Wednesday, November 21, 2001

The Wonderful and Scary Thing About E-mail

So I wrote to Virginia Postrel and told her what I'd said about her below. Well, so? If you're going to complain when people do things wrong, you should occasionally say something when they do things right. Ms Postrel often does things right.

Well, I'll be superamalgamated. She answered me. (Hope she doesn't mind if I tell you what she said.)

That's all well and good if you're an actor or sitcom writer, or if you want to talk about Hollywood. But having run a political magazine for 10 years out of L.A., written a book there, and been a regular contributor to the LAT op-ed page, I can safely say that New York and Washington have an absolute death grip on that market. You might as well not exist if you're on the West Coast (or, for that matter, anywhere else in the country except the Bos-Wash corridor). As an excellent columnist, now living in New York and writing for the NYT, wrote me recently, "But to think, someone remembers my LA Times columns--that kind of thing is invisible in the East, as you probably know."
And I responded:

First, let me say thank you for your reply, far more reasonable than my tongue-in-cheek comment probably deserved.

Perhaps it it because I am a native and resident of Atlanta (a city known primarily for Ben Matlock and the Dukes of Hazzard -- and you know, most of us even wear shoes) that I reacted as I did. If the East Coast does not recognize L.A. as a hotbed of serious political thought, the Deep South attracts even less notice -- except for CNN, and I don't think I want to be judged by my proximity to them either.

Which is actually all the more reason that I should appreciate your point -- and I do.

It's my opinion that there's nothing that makes New Yorkers especially well suited to analyze politics (or anything else) for the rest of us. That's just where the media are.

Except for one medium. This one. The internet is everywhere. If you have something reasonably intelligent to bring to the table, you can.

I love the web.

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