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Guy Trebay’s In the Place to Be

Guy Trebay, In the Place to Be, with photography by Sylvia Plachy (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1994), 367 pages, 17 black and white illustrations.

WITH ITS PERFECTLY FUSED connotations of fabulousness and flux, the title of this collection of newspaper columns, written for The Village Voice between 1981 and 1993, magnanimously invokes New York City, worms and all. The reportorial stance here is one of relaxed, often seemingly egoless suavity, sanguine and judiciously observant, yet full of the raking angles and astringent detail that bespeak a flâneur engagé. Guy Trebay’s interests run along ecumenical, eclectically inclusive lines, with high regard given to the particulars of age, sex, national origin, social background, financial status, and race. Animals and plants feature prominently, as well. His credo, expressed in the introduction, is a quote from the critic Wolfgang

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