It’s been a few weeks since we lost the luminous Nora Ephron. She was an iconic figure of New York, a woman who approached life with humor, love, and humility. She loved food, she loved people, she loved to read. Nora brought us Meg Ryan at her most adorable, showed us how to master the art of French cooking, reminded us to love our little neighborhood bookstore again, and helped to perpetuate the glow of New York City in cinema.
Nora was a witty, insightful, and clever writer who generously championed other writers. She also was a voracious reader. At her memorial service, Richard Cohen, a Washington Post columnist said, “Nora knew everybody. If I had a book, she had a galley. If I had a galley, she had a manuscript. If I had a manuscript, she knew the author.”
For Nora, reading was a passion, an escape. In I FEEL BAD ABOUT MY NECK: AND OTHER THOUGHTS ON BEING A WOMAN, Nora wrote, “Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it’s a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it’s a way of making contact with someone else’s imagination after a day that’s all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss.”
So to Nora, who gave us laughter, tears, honesty, and warmth, you will be missed. At her memorial, Martin Short said, “I believe when people pass, they zoom into the souls of the people who love them most… all of us have a piece of Nora.” So let us carry her with us in our hearts, remember to spend some time in the kitchen making macaroons, and to order what Meg Ryan is having at Katz’ deli, because Nora said it best when she said, “I don’t think any day is worth living without thinking about what you’re going to eat next at all times.”