Nora Ephron: My New York Inspiration

Before I moved to New York, and I so desperately wanted to live here, I'd pop in a Nora Ephron movie and just be transported. For the times that I thought I might never live in the city that I felt BELONGED to me, You've Got Mail was an instant mood-lifter. Especially in the fall (which the movie showed off to perfection), because I dreamt of fall days in the city - boots, a scarf, a wool coat and reading a book in Central Park. Then I discovered her writing, books, and blogs, which I couldn't get enough of. I once read that her first apartment after college was at 110 Sullivan Street and went to find it. My first apartment in New York was one street over, and I felt a sort of kinship with her - that we had both started in the same neighborhood of the city, decades apart. She was wildly successful, brilliant, hilarious, a champion for women in business, and knew how to appeal to our greatest desires through her movies and writing.

I've kept a list of my favorite Nora Ephron quotes for years so here are a few, and where I found them.

  • "When I was a child, nearly every book sent me into something approaching bliss. Can I be romanticizing my early reading experiences? I don't think so. I can tick off so many books that I read and reread when I was growing up..." [I so relate to this!] - Oprah Magazine
  • "The other night we were coming up the FDR drive and Manhattan was doing its fabulous, magical twinkling thing and all I could think was how lucky I've been to spend my adult life in New York City."
  • "It was right before New Year's, and I'd been thinking about my resolutions for the next year. Suddenly, I was served a plate of cheese. It reminded me of how much I loved cheese. So I resolved to eat more of it, and I pretty much have." - Oprah Magazine - Aha! Moment 
  • "To me fun is everything and I'm always sad when I meet people who don't have what my sister calls "the fun gene." The older you get the more crucial it is to think about, how can I have the most fun out of this day, the most delicious food, be with the people I really want to be with." - Ladies' Home Journal
  • "If there is a Nora Ephron signature anything it is that there's slightly too much food. I have a friend whose mantra is: You must choose. And I believe the exact opposite: I think you should always have at least four desserts that are kind of fighting with each other." - Epicurious 
  • "...I think a lot of people have a very strong sense early on that they are in the wrong place and that they belong somewhere else, and I knew I belonged in New York." - Academy of Achievement
  • "...it’s one of the things that young people don’t understand, that old people feel as if they’re still young except in certain ways, which are all too horrible. Like the fact that you simply physically aren’t what you used to be. But you really are the same person as you always were. And much wiser and yet, not. But younger people have no sense at all about older people. None. No imagination at all." - Salon.com
  • "Reading is one of the main things I do. Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter." - from her book, I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman
  • "Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim....What are you going to do? Everything, is my guess. It will be a little messy, but embrace the mess. It will be complicated, but rejoice in the complications. It will not be anything like what you think it will be like, but surprises are good for you. And don't be frightened: you can always change your mind....Whatever you choose, however many roads you travel, I hope that you choose not to be a lady. I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there." - Wellesley Commencement Address, 1996