I felt like an era ended when former New York City mayor Ed Koch died at 88 on Friday. When Koch became New York City’s mayor in 1978, I had just turned 10; his third and final term ended on Dec. 31, 1989, eight days after I turned 22. He was the mayor of my childhood, even though my family lived in Mahwah, N.J. I mean, he was The Mayor. The only mayor! He was the one on the local newscasts and in the pages of the New York Times. I had no idea who Mahwah’s mayor was. To me, the mayor was like the president: there was one, and it was Ed Koch, just like there was one city, and that was New York City. The title “Hizzoner” seemed to have been invented for Koch (it wasn’t). To this day, when I think “mayor,” I envision Ed Koch. I had always hoped to meet him. He was the quintessential New Yorker, so we thought the same way about a lot of things. For instance, New Jersey:
“I don’t want to leave Manhattan, even when I’m gone. This is my home. The thought of having to go to New Jersey was so distressing to me,” Koch said after purchasing a Manhattan burial plot in 2008.
He also said about Albany, N.Y.:
“Have you ever lived in the suburbs? It’s sterile. It’s nothing. It’s wasting your life.”
Columnist Joe Klein diagnosed Koch with Wisenheimer’s Syndrome. Was Koch being a wisenheimer when he suggested protecting the New York subway system from graffiti by installing wild wolves to protect the trains? I don’t know; it seems effective to me.
Sometimes Koch simply spoke truths that other people shied away from. I like this quote:
“If you agree with me on 9 out of 12 issues, vote for me. If you agree with me on 12 out of 12 issues, see a psychiatrist.”
I wish more politicians said things like that these days instead of bragging about how right they are all the time! Also, I defy you to tell me that Koch’s diet advice wasn’t right on the money:
“The best way to lose weight is to close your mouth — something very difficult for a politician. Or watch your food — just watch it, don’t eat it.”
In honor of Hizzoner, I’m going to watch a Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate bar right now.
Here’s what I had on the blog this week:
- Monday: I wasn’t crazy about Elisabeth Moss’s diamond studs at the SAG Awards.
- Tuesday: Stacy Lomman loaned me a sweater.
- Also on Tuesday: When retailers aren’t interested in my jewelry line, I try to pry a reason out of them in hopes of getting some constructive criticism. This week, I got a response that was batshit crazy. Thanks very little, as Stacy Lomman would say.
- Wednesday: The Devil and Franco Moschino.
- Thursday: February’s birthstone is amethyst.
- Friday: I’ve got Valentine’s Day jewelry for people in love … or out of love.
- Saturday: Chubby faux-ostrich jacket and Mod white boots.