Christopher Hitchens discusses Maureen Dowd’s debut as a New York Times columnist and his Vanity Fair article, “Top Dowd,” with C-SPAN’s Brian Lamb on May 15, 2005:
“I know she didn’t want to be photographed [for the Vanity Fair piece]; she’s so shy. It was a struggle to get her to be Kodaked. Why the article, you ask? …Well, we’re interested in the media and we are interested in obviously controversy about it and it seemed to us that the occasion of Maureen becoming one of the Times’ permanent commentators was a good one for a profile.”
“What I’m urging Maureen not to overlook is the possibility that there would be a columnist who was sort of regularly contemptuous of the thoughts of people who go into politics in this country and the reason for which they do it. …What I hope we get from her column is the continuous reminder that these people are motivated by other things than the national interest.”
I believe this March 29, 1995, piece about how dull the Academy Awards are was Dowd’s first Times column. Correct me if I’m wrong.