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Brief Encounters, Dick Cavett

I’ve always enjoyed having the Dick Cavett show on youtube or tubi in the background while I’m exercising, and I’ve actually read this book years back before I started recording the books I’ve read. I thought it was time for a re-read. Cavett’s so good at seeing the not-obvious, the soft-spoken but perhaps not seen. He’s intellectual, well-read, and seems to be just an all-around nice individual. His encounters and stories reveal that. The book contains stories that he wrote in his column for the NY Times. Topics run the gamut and include: Liz and Burt; political correctness; offensive guests on his show; details of his first show; actor stand-bys on Broadway; airport security; Steve jobs; attending college at Yale; Marlene Dietrich’s telephone calls to him; the effect of news on your health; his friendship with Groucho Marx; Dick Clark and the 25,000 pyramid game show when he was a guest (I remember watching it when I’d be home from school sick); his time as a comedy writer; Jack Benny; Nora Ephron; meeting Stan Laurel; his friendship with Muhammed Ali; topic of guns; the Oscar thank-yous; Johnny Carson; Jonathan Winters; the death of James Gandolfini; booze… no topic off-limits is what makes this guy so good. It is what makes any person good – be interesting and anxious to learn new things, well-read, well-versed in history on a wide range of topics, and be the hit at the next cocktail party you attend.


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