My posts fit into a number of different categories. Some are retorts, some are analyses. File this one under “musing”. Yesterday I heard a feature on the radio about a New York Post tour of New York City. As I listened something occurred to me. What newspaper really epitomizes, i.e. exemplifies, synecdochizes (a “synecdoche” is a rhetorical device in which a part stands in for the whole), New York?
Some New Yorkers probably wish that the New York Times, the self-proclaimed “newspaper of record”, epitomized their city. I don’t think it does. It’s too reserved; too cautious; too erudite; too genteel and brittle. Some people probably think that the Wall Street Journal epitomizes New York. I think it actually epitomizes Greenwich, Connecticut. New York is about money but that’s not all it’s about.
I believe that the newspaper that best epitomizes New York, like it or not, is the New York Post, in all its color, saturation with sex, and cruelty. Who can forget the great Post headlines? “Axis of Weasel”. “Kiss Your Asteroid Goodbye”. And, possibly the greatest tabloid headline of all time, “Headless Body in Topless Bar”. Now those are New York. Although the New York Daily News’s “Ford to City: Drop Dead” is pretty New York, too.
What newspaper epitomizes Chicago? There’s no doubt in my mind it was the Chicago Daily News. That the Daily News ceased publication more than 30 years ago should give us pause.