Wednesday, September 06, 2000

The E-mail chronicles and a night of media frenzy

In revolutionary style, Yahoo! Internet Life magazine brought together
several of our nation's top writers to chronicle their thoughts on
e-mail for the September 2000 issue. And on Wednesday, September 6th,
they brought these esteemed writers: Esther Dyson (Release 1.0), George
Plimpton (The Paris Review), Susan Cheever (author of her father's
biography and "Looking for Work"), Bill Bly ("We Descend") and more
together with the new generation of writers: Jennifer Eno (Chick Click
community content), Jonathan Rosen ("The Talmund and the Internet"). But
the guests who came rounded out the illustrious set even more. I chatted
with's managing editor Chris Peacock before moving towards the
back and meeting Bill Bly and his wife, Deborah Bly. He contributed a poem
to the e-mail chronicles, and as we spoke I remembered this couple as
teachers at my alma mater -- NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. NY1's Elizabeth
Gerst was looking quite stylish in her yellow kimono-coat as she introduced
me to producer Neimat Kerdnv. Brill's Content's senior writer Mark Boal had
staked out some good real estate at the bar, and we chatted for a bit about
our careers before he went on his mingling way. When I asked George Plimpton
what he thought of email, he mentioned that he uses the 'Net to search for
Right-fielders in Baseball, but other than that -- not too much. We're sure
that'll all change. His chronicle was on the I Love You virus.

Y!IL's Editor-in-Chief Barry Golson and Publisher Andrew Kramer were holding
court, appropriately, and dressed in sharp, spiffy jackets with attention to
 detail. The Oberserver's Gabriel Synder was less dressed up, but managed a
quick "hello" to me and Y!IL's associate editor Jeremy Caplan as he rushed out.

Relaxing in the back, I found MSNBC's Internet correspondent Lisa Napoli,
who introduced me to her fiance, illustrator and painter Daniel Adel. We
caught up on the old days, the core group and the lovely town of Cooperstown!
 Senior editor Ron BelBruno introduced me to Jane Levere, a freelance writer,
and Bloomberg's Christine Taylor. Jennifer Eno told me about her new role at
Chick Click and introduced me to their online TV host Emma Wilson.
The New York Times' Preludes writer Abby Ellin was there, chatting with
Business 2.0's features editor Kevin Hogan and Senior writer Edward Robinson.
US Weekly's associate editor Tom Samiljan was in a wildly printed shirt, and
The Record's sports writer Bob Klapisch told me he had two connections to the
 party -- his old college roommate, Y!IL managing editor John House and former
 colleague Y!IL PR director Diane Stefani. John's wife was also there -- Time
Out's President and Editor-in-Chief Cyndi Stivers.

Later over dinner, we enjoyed some fine Italian food and several more martinis.
The night got nuttier when Geraldo Riveria and Al Sharpton came into the
restaurant and sat down next to us. Then a reporter from the Daily News and the
Post joined them at their table and a full interview ensued on Mr. Riveria's
mayorial announcement. But wait! NY1 is here now, with a camera. But no one got
the amazingly candid photographs of this occasion except Bruce Cohen, president
of The Bruce Cohen group. He snapped a full roll of 36 shots and then we
promptly scanned them in so you, dear Cyber Scene readers, could also see this
wild fete. When Dr. Ruth saw Jennifer Eno's chronicle on her, she danced around
the restaurant with her copy of the mag ("now my rates can go up!"). Meanwhile,
Jake "Raging Bull" La Motta had come in, shook everyone's hands and eyed-over
the ladies before he sat down right in front of us. He oversaw the whole
production with a smirk on his face, wearing a red suit coat and black cowboy
hat, joined by a skinny, young date who kept giggling at the whole affair.

Ah, New York! What a wonderful town!