New York needed him, so he valiantly took up the fight — or so says Jerry Seinfeld of the essay he penned in The New York Times responding to Stand Up N.Y. comedy club co-owner James Altucher’s August essay declaring New York City “dead forever.”
“He’s fine. I didn’t like that nobody was rebutting it. Then I realized, ‘Oh, I guess that’s my job.’ Somebody, a real New Yorker, has to answer this,” Seinfeld, 66, said in an interview for CBS’ “60 Minutes,” set to air Sunday.
He draws an explanatory metaphor for this straightforward statement by describing New York City as a proverbial anthill that has been toppled.
“When you were a kid, remember kicking over the anthill? That’s what just happened to us. They just kicked over the whole anthill. And what do the ants do? ‘All right. Hand me the next crumb. Let’s get back to work.”
Interviewer Jon Wertheim then points out that, despite Seinfeld now saying the argument wasn’t personal, he actually had made it quite personally initially. “You called him ‘some putz on LinkedIn,’” Wertheim told him, to which Seinfeld laughed, and denied knowing about the networking platform.
“I don’t even know what LinkedIn is,” Seinfeld said. “That’s who that guy is for the rest of his life. ‘Oh, look who’s here. The putz from LinkedIn.’”
The so-called “putz” club co-owner, Dani Zoldan, responded to Seinfeld’s comments by calling him full-of-himself and unpleasant, in an interview with The Post. “It’s known in the comedy industry. He’s just cold and arrogant. He’s just not a nice guy,” said Zoldan, 39.
In the “60 Minutes” interview, Seinfeld also makes a general, adjective-filled comment about the essence of New York City which hinges on there being a heady, emotional threat to the city’s grit.
“I just don’t want New Yorkism to die. I don’t want it to be replaced by deep concern and over-sentimentality. You can have those things, but be a little bad–s, too. We don’t care if things are tough. Everything is always tough. It’s tough to live here,” he said.
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