My friends and I had drinks at a Manhattan piano bar one evening while on holiday in New York. The piano player was extremely skillful so I decided to request my favorite song by French composer Michel Legrand. It was not the sort of place where one would normally make song requests but I decided to give it a try. I reached for a paper napkin and simply wrote, ''What are you doing the rest of your life?''
''Could you give this to the pianist?'' I asked the waiter, who delivered the note during the break.
''Ben says he's busy tonight,'' the waiter told me, when he returned shortly after, and with a slightly conspiratorial smile. ''But if you're here next Tuesday night, he knows a nice little spaghetti place not too far from here.''
The original version, written by Travelife Magazine publisher Christine Cunanan, first appeared in the New York Times in 1997.
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