What Gracious Looks and Sounds LikeI'm usually not up late enough to watch Charlie Rose, and I'm not particularly fond of his interviewing style anyway, but I happened to have him on in the background last night. When Frank Bruni came on, I suddenly found myself riveted.
Bruni was the restaurant critic of the New York Times from April 2004 to August 2009. He has included his experience in that job, along with an account of growing up in a loving family that attached great value to good and ample meals, in his recently published memoir, Born Round: The Secret History of a Full-Time Eater."
What had me so entranced by his conversation with Charlie Rose was not the subject matter of his book per se, but rather his manner of conversing, which had the most gracious air that I personally could remember witnessing on TV.
Bruni seems such an exemplar of graciousness that I want to pass along links for watching and listening to him in action. The Rose interview isn't yet available online, but I did locate the video below, a portion of a September 1 interview with Leonard Lopate on WNYC. The audio of the full interview is available here.
Another interview is from Thursday, when Bruni sat down with Stephen Colbert. You can watch it here.
You can also get a clear sense of Bruni's manner and conversational tone from reading transcripts of interviews, such as his September 14 interview with Julia Reed. One final sample of his style is the online Q&A the Times ran in October 2008, which you can read here.