Dangerous Jane

By Ron Rosenbaum Vanity Fair November 1988 She can’t stop talking about that gun. The anti-aircraft gun, the one in Hanoi, the one she posed with in 1972, the one she seemed to flirt with in a ten-second stretch of silent newsreel that has become her most famous...

The Notorious Libby Holman

By Jon Bradshaw Vanity Fair March, 1985 When Libby Holman arrived in Manhattan in 1924, it was a bold and brassy town, devoted to the pleasure of pleasing itself. Prohibition—“the Great Foolishness,” as the gossip columnist Lucius Beebe called it—was in effect, but it...

Death of a Playmate

By Teresa Carpenter The Village Voice November 5, 1980 It is shortly past four in the afternoon and Hugh Hefner glides wordlessly into the library of his Playboy Mansion West. He is wearing pajamas and looking somber in green silk. The incongruous spectacle of a...

The Essential Ron Rosenbaum: Part Two

By Alex Belth The Stacks Reader March 2, 2020 Picking up where we left off with The Essential Ron Rosenbaum: Part One, here’s another (baker’s) dozen from Rosenbaum—from lunches with power brokers in the 1980s, to literary appreciations of Shakespeare, Catch-22, and...

Fear of Reading: Lexical Anhedonia Sweeps the Land

By Marcelle Clements The Baltimore Sun May 19, 1992 Although this is the era in which flaws in the emotional and psychological development of every man, woman, child and dog have been scrutinized in the most minuscule detail, there seems to be no organized interest in...

The Strange Death of Danny Casolaro

By Ron Rosenbaum Vanity Fair December 1991 One of the first stories I heard about Danny Casolaro’s funeral was the five blondes at the grave site. Five stunners ranging in age from twenty to forty, all dressed in black, all weeping copiously. I was feeling pretty bad...

War of Remembrance

By Stephen Fried Philadelphia Magazine January, 1994 When she decided to tell her parents that they couldn’t come to her home for Christmas, Jennifer Freyd hoped she was just having a nervous breakdown. It was the 18th of December, 1990, and the 33-year-old psychology...

The Passions of Mario Cuomo

By Ron Rosenbaum Manhattan Inc. September, 1985 Who is that tall, spectral figure haunting the gloomy halls of the state capitol building today? Who is that silver-haired, patrician wraith with the lines of a shattered past engraved on his face? Could it be—yes—it’s...

In the Eye of the Storm a Year Later

By Gary Smith Life September 1990 “There are significant moments in the life of a human,” a significant man in Charleston, S.C., once told me. “Moments in our lives when we need to act right. It’s crucial that we recognize them when they come, that we gather the...

Making It!

By Seymour Krim The Village Voice September 9, 1959 When has an inside phrase like “making it” or so-and-so’s “got it made” shot with such reality through the museum of official English? In this terse verbal shorthand lies a philosophy of life that puts a gun in the...

A Hot Pig Tale!

By Brad Darrach People September 3, 1979 A sunburst blonde lolls on lavender satin sheets. Her mouth is large, scarlet, half-open. Her blank blue eyes smolder like sapphires in candlelight. “My beauty,” she murmurs breathily as her sensuous snout writhes with allure,...

The Most Hated Lawyer in America

By Ron Rosenbaum Vanity Fair March 1992 It’s a quiet Sunday morning in the nearly deserted Greenwich Village town house of attorney William Kunstler. In the stillness, the answering machine clicks on and there’s a quiet woman’s voice speaking, calmly, patiently...