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Excerpt from “Grace” by Paula Fox

…he wrote three letters to the New
York Times. …His third letter was about a term, “street smart”, used
by a writer to describe a novel’s heroine. “This is a superficially
snappy but meaningless cliche that trivializes reality,” he wrote. “On
the street, the truth is that people stumble about in confusion and
dismay even when they are making fortunes selling illegal drugs. People
are smart for only a few minutes at a time.”

This is a great, great short story in Best American 2004.

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