I’m a “Character” in Today’s NY Times

My friend (and screenwriter) Angus MacLachlan has a short article in the “Lives” section of today’s New York Times. It’s a true story that takes place in our neighborhood (Angus lives around the corner from me) and the pictured chair lived in my studio for about a year between the events detailed in the story, although it was green then and smelled vaguely of dog pee.

Angus had sent me an early draft of this story in which he’d changed my name to “Dan Toole.”  I requested a rewrite with that altered it to “Dr. Magnus R. Steele” but apparently the Times requires writers to use real names for this feature, so it’s back to “Ben Towle” here.  They even had a fact checker call apparently. (This fact check guy must have been on a smoke break during the buildup to the Iraq War.  [Zing!!!]) Anyway, here’s the article.


  1. Robin says:

    I saw you in there! I always read the Lives articles. Your name jumped out at me, not just because I know you, but because you were referred to by first and last name. I don’t remember noticing that before.

  2. Chris S says:

    That was a fun story. Why don’t I read the New York Times more?

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