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Tepper Isn't Going Out: A Novel by Calvin…

Tepper Isn't Going Out: A Novel (2001)

by Calvin Trillin

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4402037,934 (3.63)21
Murray Tepper would say that he is an ordinary New Yorker who is simply trying to read the newspaper in peace. But he reads while sitting behind the wheel of his parked car, and his car always seems to be in a particularly desirable parking spot. Not surprisingly, he is regularly interrupted by drivers who want to know if he is going out. Tepper isn’t going out. Why not? His explanations tend to be rather literal: the indisputable fact, for instance, that he has twenty minutes left on the meter. Tepper’s behavior sometimes irritates the people who want his spot. (“Is that where you live? Is that car rent-controlled?”) It also irritates the mayor—Frank Ducavelli, known in tabloid headlines as Il Duce—who sees Murray Tepper as a harbinger of what His Honor always calls “the forces of disorder.” But once New Yorkers become aware of Tepper, some of them begin to suspect that he knows something they don’t know. And an ever-increasing number of them are willing to line up for the opportunity to sit in his car with him and find out. Tepper Isn’t Going Out is a wise and witty story of an ordinary man who, perhaps innocently, changes the world around him.… (more)
  1. 10
    The Pushcart War by Jean Merrill (bluehighlighter)
    bluehighlighter: Featuring a similar, slyly comic writing style, that "New York" feeling in the prose and dialogue, and some form of rebellion against a large and cantankerous foe.
  2. 10
    The Line by Olga Grushin (LynnB)
    LynnB: Both of these books deal with reactions to something new: a kiosk or a person who sits in his parked car. Both show how a sense of community develops around the new feature of the environment. Tepper is much lighter than The Line.
  3. 10
    Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters by Mark Dunn (amysisson)
    amysisson: Both are deceptively simple stories that highlight absurdity in human behavior.

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» See also 21 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 20 (next | show all)
Very funny book, though I wonder whether those who aren't born and/or bred New Yorkers would get its full impact. Its protagonist likes to read the newspaper in his car, in various parts of Manhattan, and his Herculean knowledge of alternative side of the street, days of the week when permitted, no parking at all vs. limited parking, etc., regulations. Includes a thinly fictionalized authoritarian mayor known as Il Duce, who is of course the grotesque Rudolph Giuliani. ( )
  copyedit52 | Apr 18, 2019 |
So boring. Wished it had been a short story. ( )
  Iambookish | Dec 14, 2016 |
Is Tepper a brilliant planner who wants to retire or just a simple New Yorker with a parking fetish? You'll have to read this rollicking hysterical book about people with poor listening skills, insanely paranoid politicians, New York City, and parking to find out.

Good read but you may have to be a New Yorker to appreciate all the nuances. ( )
  Bookish59 | Oct 22, 2015 |
This makes me miss New York City so much. Life expressed via alternate-aide-of-the-street parking! Russ & Daughters! Yiddishkeit! Rivington Street! Hizzoner! The court buildings downtown! The tabloid newspaper war!

It ends a little abruptly, but I love everyone in it so much that I just want to read about them forever. Except possibly Richard. ( )
  cricketbats | Apr 18, 2013 |
"Tepper Isn't Going Out" is a delightfully irreverent take on authority, moral courage, and the joy of finding the perfect parking space. The book oscillates between sly social commentary and outright satire as the titular Murray Tepper stands up in defense of his right to sit in a (legally parked) car. Populated by memorable characters this book will delight anyone who enjoys seeing mad bureaucracies brought down a few notches. ( )
  sullijo | Nov 29, 2012 |
Showing 1-5 of 20 (next | show all)
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