Taki Taki

High Life | 11 April 2009

Paternal love

New York

‘Lock up your daughters! Is the world ready for Taki Jr?’ This was the New York Observer headline, followed by: ‘Meet the only son of the world’s naughtiest Greek playboy’. Under any other circumstances, I’d be blushing — who the hell wants to be called a playboy aged 72 — but when it comes to JT, or my daughter Lolly, the old boy will welcome anything, and smile about it to boot. The NY Observer, a pink weekly, has been around for close to 30 years, and Peter Kaplan, the long-time editor, has done a grand job in a very difficult undertaking. Noo Yawkers have no time to read, and, when they do, their attention span is that of a popinjay. Kaplan has overcome this by wonderful film and book reviews, total coverage of high- and middle-brow culture, as well as trenchant political critique of the mess that is New York politics.

I was a columnist for two years at the salmon-coloured weekly back in the early Nineties, and enjoyed myself tremendously. Writing among liberals is fun. One’s voice stands out. Then I made a terrible mistake. I was wooed by the Circe-like voice of Rupert Murdoch, and decamped for the New York Post, an extremely readable tabloid whose politics are to the right of Avigdor Lieberman and almost as subtle. The Post placed my column among the ads that lonely onanists read, and, although I became a hero of sorts among the wankers, the Taki name for all intents and purposes disappeared from the Big Bagel scene.

Well, now it’s back with a vengeance, but it’s Taki Jr, or JT, my son and hopefully my heir, who is hogging the headlines. Actually I am grateful to the NY Observer for putting him on its two front pages.

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