Metropolitan Life
  • Metropolitan Life


    Fran Lebowitz.


    New York: Dutton, 1978. Octavo. Black cloth boards with a yellow dust wrapper, mildly sun-faded on the spine. 177 pages. First edition, later printing. Inscribed with a self-portrait of the artist smoking a cigarette and frowning. Near fine.


    Lebowitz's first book, a collection of wry, comedic essays. Her trademark is the sneer; she disapproves of virtually everything except sleep, cigarette smoking, and good furniture. Her essays and topical interviews on subjects ranging from the difficulty of finding an acceptable apartment to the art of freeloading at weekend houses have come to be regarded as classics of literary humor and social observation. Some years ago, Lebowitz sold a proposal of a novel entitled “Exterior Signs of Wealth,” a reference to a French conspicuous-consumption tax figured on the basis of display of wealth. The novel is reputedly about rich people who want to be artists, and artists who want to be rich people. When asked about the long delay in its delivery to her publisher, she explained that she only works on it on the side. “Full-time I’m watching daytime TV.”


    "If your sexual fantasies were truly of interest to others,

    they would no longer be fantasies."


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