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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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3771728,622 (3.66)13
  1. 00
    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.
  2. 00
    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 13 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
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 |
Murray Tepper has a parking spot in a garage. But, every night, he goes searching for an on-street spot where he can park his car. There, he sits and reads the paper, waving away other parking spot seekers who ask if he is going out. Because he isn't.

Why is he doing this? Nostaligia for the days when he couldn't afford a garage and finding a legal, long-term spot was both a necessity and a triumph? Mid-life crisis? Or some deeper plot? All Murray will say is that he is legally parked and not going out.

This is a funny book -- a bit of a satire on city politics, fame and folk heroes. A real pleasure to read -- you'll like Murry Tepper and, like so many characters in the novel, want to sit in the car with him and listen to what he doesn't really say. ( )
  LynnB | Jan 28, 2012 |
A quick read. By the time I got on Goodreads to add it to my Currently Reading shelf, I had read it.

Since it's by Calvin Trillin, those familiar with Calvin Trillin probably already know this is filled with quirky, gentle comedy, and that it's almost a disappointment when it turns out to have a plot.

Trillin transported me to residential Manhattan and the detailed know-how necessary to park legally and well. It's as if somebody said, "Calvin, parking is the most boring subject on earth. I dare you to write a book about it that people will enjoy reading."

He won the bet. This book makes me want to go sit in my car and read the paper, but it won't be any fun unless I can get my husband to install a parking meter in the front yard. ( )
  MarianAllen | Jan 20, 2012 |
This is a little novel that actually ends up saying quite a lot – about the city of New York, about the modern idea of celebrity, about the seemingly random connections that give order to a chaotic universe. But mostly it’s about parking.

The main character, Tepper, is a hobbyist parker. He finds a legal spot and squats there, because he actually isn’t going out. This strange habit eventually makes it into the newspapers, turning Tepper into a kind of modern-day guru on the mountaintop. New Yorkers make the journey to his current parking spot to ask his advice on any subject.

Eventually, Tepper’s parking habit entangles him with the mayor of New York, who is obsessed with keeping order (and who is not-so-subtly modeled on pre-9/11 Rudy Giuliani), and so the story gets rolling, culminating in street riots, demonstrations, trials – but all conducted in a very quiet, orderly manner. It’s a subtly humorous book that will make anyone want to go parking, but not go out.

Read because I like the author (2003). ( )
  sturlington | May 5, 2011 |
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0375758518, Paperback)

New York City and America's car culture smash together in Calvin Trillin's Tepper Isn't Going Out, a humorous tale of the urban quest for an open parking space. When a mailing-list broker, Murray Tepper, decides to spend his days plugging meters so he can sit in his car reading newspapers and waive off suitors hopeful of gaining his spot, little does he know that his odd behavior (even by New York standards) will set off a media buzz, provide him with cult-hero status, and incur reproach from the paranoid, dour Mayor Frank Ducavelli, who focuses on curtailing Tepper's "abuse" of the parking meter system.

Granted, the plot of this novel is quite thin, but, while not leaving you in stitches, Trillin provokes many smirks and smiles with his wit. For instance, he writes of magazines titled Beautiful Spot: A Magazine of Parking and the potential of Spin: The Magazine of Salad Drying. When Tepper suggests that his friend Jack leave his car's flashers on while parked illegally, Jack responds:

And draw attention to myself? Not a chance. I always park in front of hydrants. The secret is to park smack in front of them rather than just too near them. You have to go all the way. If you're smack in front of them, the cop rolling down the street can't see that there's a hydrant there at all. You have to be brazen. That's my motto, in parking and in life: be brazen.
Trillin's book should appeal to commuters and city dwellers everywhere, and anyone else looking for a chuckle. --Michael Ferch

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:54 -0400)

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