I never walked the streets of New York hoping to be a musical comedy star. For one thing, they would have thought I was too tall, because l was five feet eight and a half, and they were all little bitty things running around in the studio at that time.
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I grew up as a fifth-generation Jew in the American South, at the confluence of two great storytelling traditions. After graduating from Yale in the 1980s, I moved to Japan. For young adventure seekers like myself, the white-hot Japanese miracle held a similar appeal as Russia in 1920s or Paris in the 1950s.