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www.mnftiu.cc » Blog Archive » EXCLUSIVE! Friedman’s House: A Voice From The Inside

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EXCLUSIVE! Friedman’s House: A Voice From The Inside



10:48 AM, 1/16/09

A long-time MNFTIU reader writes to say he/she once worked a cocktail party at Thomas Friedman’s house.

Take it away:

. . . Upon entering the house, I noticed that the ceilings were very high — maybe 12-14 feet or even more. The interior was immaculate — I guessed that it had been cleaned by a professional team from top to bottom that very day, and the ceilings were so high that you would probably need stepladders to do it so perfectly. The floorboards, the tasteful blue-gray paint job, the fixtures, molding, and every piece of furniture seemed ultra-new, with no wear and tear.


When I washed my hands upon visiting the bathroom, I managed to let a drop of water get out of the sink, at which point I felt guilty because I pretty much ruined the perfectness of the bathroom at that point. The gathering eventually grew to about 30-40 people, all dressed in moderately formal attire. About midway through the evening, someone started clinking their glass and asked Tom to speak, at which point Thomas Friedman stood up and welcomed everyone to his home, at which point I realized that I was totally in Tom Friedman’s house.


I did not hear what he said, because that was the designated time for me and the other helpers to go to the kitchen and eat dinner prepared by his Ukrainian servant. The kitchen was huge, just like every other room in his house. I talked to the Ukrainian woman and Tom Friedman’s wife too, who was super nice and apparently is a schoolteacher. The Ukrainian woman is their full-time help, and I’m pretty sure they had another servant too.


The thing that blew me away was not merely the scale and sheer richness of their home — which was impressive; it was the fact that it was the home of a journalist-writer-pundit. Being an avid consumer of mainstream punditry, I always naively envision people like Tom Friedman living in a comfortable yet modest apartment on West End Avenue, with a couple of comfortable rooms and a big office somewhere with papers and books everywhere.


This was quite the opposite — a total showpiece, with every detail in perfect order. It finally dawned on me that Tom Friedman must sell so many books that he is the equivalent of Madonna in terms of sales, which is how he can afford his humongous crib. That, plus he really really likes to impress his guests with his house.

Have any other readers been in Thomas Friedman’s house? Send me your memories/impressions . . . anonymity guaranteed . . .

Have any MNFTIU readers been inside Thomas Friedman’s moustache? Send your memories/impressions/sensations/celebrations . . . anonymity guaranteed . . .