Stranger in Two Worlds

Harris, Jean

Macmillan, 1986

p. 34

Herman Tarnower, the poor Jewish boy from Brooklyn, wanted above all to be rich. He wanted to be rich and to be known to be rich. At dinner parties with the very rich (“She’s richer than Croesus, darling, and believe me she earned every bit of it the hard way. The man she was married to was a perfect bastard”) he wrote his script very well.” After much practice he could sound as if he had been born not in Brooklyn but in the shadow of Hahvahd. “That little Jewish boy from Brooklyn could wing it with ‘Our Crowd’ and leave them begging for more. And he loved being there, rubbing elbows with people who had lived with big money for generations. None of this ‘well-to-do’ garbage–rich, really rich, that’s what he loved. It was the ultimate redeeming feature as far as he was concerned. If you were going to be rude, if you weren’t very bright, if you came late to one of his dinner parties, you better damned well be rich.”