In the Details | Gay Talese
A panoply of eccentric biographical data re: the esteemed author and aesthete.
HIS FATHER, a tailor, provided early instruction on the art of observing human nature: “In the course of [his] fittings … he would measure a man and take the measure of a man at the same time.”
HE NEVER learned Italian (or any language other than English) and never wanted to become a literary expat or foreign correspondent: “America was foreign enough to me. The big story when I was [coming of] age was America.”
AS A boy he rubbed elbows with a young Grace Kelly, whose family came to the Jersey Shore during the summers: “[She] epitomized glamour—even back in the day.”
HE GOT “terrible grades” as a student; 11 colleges rejected him. He excelled not at school curriculum but at “curiosity.”
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Photograph by Gasper Tringale.