My dad laminated the famous, or should I say infamous, New York Post front page with that headline and we used it as a placemat when we had lunch in our ad agency’s conference room. When I’ve been asked the question, “Where do you get your ideas?” I think about that placemat. Inspiration is everywhere.
Still, I’m not a big reader of tabloids, like the Post, as I’ve discovered that I find completely outrageous and tidbits and story starting points in the more staid pages of The New York Times. You just have to look beyond the front page and delve into the regional and national news. I live in a country full of eccentric killers, cults of all kinds and extraordinary heroes, too.
Sometimes, when I’m sitting in the window of the NewsBar (my favorite place for morning coffee) I stumble upon a story that is just too weird for fiction. I used to cut these wacky bits and pieces out and keep them in files, but saving craziness to the cloud has replaced that habit and my old files on everything from the phenomenon of false confessions and remembrances of alien abductions to phobias and the fates of fallen dictators are headed for the shredder. It’s just so easy to find them on the web. I don’t need the pounds of paper anymore.
I don’t know what happened to that placemat. Would I serve dinner to my friend on it? No, I don’t think so. I prefer less ironic table settings and keep my wicked side out of the kitchen.