• After 46 Thanksgivings, I still can't make a good turkey. Mine was so undercooked last year that several guests suggested a really excellent veterinarian could probably get it up and gobbling again. I love a man who can cook and I love a man who can write, and Anthony Bourdain is a man who can do both. So come next year, Chef Bourdain can be in charge of cranberries and column ideas. 

  • I believe I could listen to Tom Waits singing "Take It with Me" every rainy Sunday for the rest of my life. I also love Johann Sebastian Bach, Ray Charles, Randy Newman, Stephen Sondheim, Johnny Cash and several Beatles. They all make me happy and they all break my heart. And when you think about it, what else do you want from a musician? 

  • One hot summer night at the end of the '70s, I sat in a 15,274-seat amphitheater just outside Detroit, Michigan, and watched a wild and crazy guy in a white suit perform "the disappearing dime trick." It was absurd and ironic, and exceedingly funny—it was the bravest act of comedy I'd ever witnessed. It was Steve Martin. He removed the arrow from his head a long, long time ago, but like comic geniuses from Buster Keaton to David Sedaris, he still performs a remarkable sleight of hand. Rent Roxanne, read The Pleasure of My Company or Shopgirl or a short story from his Pure Drivel collection called "Hissy Fit," and see for yourself how time after time, he manages to catch the pedestrian moment—the ordinary gesture—and wring it into an expression of exquisite longing. He was, is, and will always be my ideal combination of contemplative and cuckoo. 

  • Finally, there's the 20-something model/actor/Barneys clerk who sold me a pair of sunglasses I couldn't afford last Saturday morning. Shallow? You bet, but Walter Cronkite will only take a girl so far. I know Sunglasses Guy is an impossible fantasy, but you have to admit, he's a better option than Johann Sebastian Bach.

Besides, I think there's something to be said for coming up with a list of impossible fantasies. Women—at least this one—cannot live by reality alone.

More From Lisa Kogan


Next Story