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Arriving at
6:00 AM

August 3 2019
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Candace Bushnell, in character, poses in her East Side apartment.

Half an hour into my interview with Candace Bushnell it hits me that I’ve put myself where she’s supposed to be. There I sit, in her Upper East Side apartment, smack-dab in the middle of her sofa, upholstered in hot-pink velvet, and flanked by her two standard poodles, Pepper and Prancer, as she did on the cover of her latest book, Is There Still Sex in the City?, a sequel of sorts to 1996’s Sex and the City. True, I’m not wearing an electric-purple tulle minidress with a fitted bodice and a skirt like a cheerleader’s pom-pom, a costume that requires nerve, which she has, and a fashion model’s figure, which she also has, no mean feat at 60. Nor would I so much as attempt the perilously high heels with the crisscrossing straps. (If the dress suggests that the answer to the query posed in the title is Yes, yes, a thousand times yes, the shoes confirm that suggestion.) Nevertheless, uncanny.

I’m about to interrupt her, alert her to the act of pop-cultural blasphemy I’ve inadvertently committed, offer an abject apology, and insist we switch seats, when I come to my senses, bite my tongue, because: (A) she’s in the middle of a story, which means she’s on a roll; (B) there’s no seat for me to switch to (ever since she read somewhere that standing is better for your health than sitting, she’s become virulently anti-chair—she even writes standing); (C) her place in the pop-culture canon is assured, and she is, consequently, impervious to acts of pop-cultural blasphemy, regardless of how egregious; and (D) she seems to take herself very seriously without taking herself at all seriously, and I therefore cannot imagine her giving a shit where I park my body.

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