Postscript for Ben Bradlee of The Washington Post

Ben Bradlee

David Remnick’s eulogy for the great Ben Bradlee, the former executive editor of The Washington Post who oversaw its Pentagon Papers and Watergate chapters, and who died Tuesday at ninety-three, is an aptly magnificent remembrance for a magnificent titan of the last century. It’s short but it’s full of pithy, illuminating anecdotes about Bradlee as a force of nature, a paragon of a media age the likes of which we may never see again. This bit was my favorite:

Bradlee was, by today’s standards, unchallengeable, and he was expert in the art of florid dismissal. His secretary, Debbie Regan, was, in turn, careful to reflect precisely his language when transcribing his dictation. One day, Regan approached the house grammarian, an editor named Tom Lippman, and admitted that she was perplexed. ‘Look, I have to ask you something,’ she said. ‘Is ‘dickhead’ one word or two?’

Read the entire piece at