Taubman: Roch. prison tips

Taubman: Roch. prison tips

Here's a lighthearted (I think) posting by Peter Lattman on the Wall Street Journal's Law Blog. It quotes excepts from Alfred Taubman's new memoirs. Taubman, shopping center tycoon and convicted felon, points out tips for dealing with prison from his time at the Federal Medical Center in Rochester.

The pic is from Taubman's book party in New York last night. If you don't recognize him, that's Henry Kissinger by Taubman. This pic is from New York Magazine.

And, FYI, we did try to interview Taubman while he was here. Douglas McGill, a former New York reporter and now Rochester-based author, had interviewed Taubman when he was Sotheby's. I had he try to convince Al to participate in a story. He passed. But now he is talking:


Listen up, Bernie. Take heed, Skilling. Real estate titan Alfred Taubman, who served nine-and-a-half months in prison for his role in the auction-house price-fixing scandal, has some tips for you. Taubman, who served as chairman of Sotheby’s from 1983 to 2000, has a new memoir, "Threshold Resistance: The Extraordinary Career of a Luxury Retailing Pioneer."

• Maintain a good-natured demeanor:"One thing you learn right away as you interact with the other inmates is to never show any signs of disrespect."

• Bring reading material:"It really is a different experience reading Art + Auction or Vanity Fair in a federal penitentiary."

• Make new friends:"A big, strong 36-year-old African-American named Ben . . . was intelligent, had a good sense of humor, and from our first day together in Rochester he became my adviser and protector, which I appreciated very much."

• Keep old ones:"Nancy Kissinger was kind enough to send me pictures of her new puppy."

• Hedge when your cellmate asks you to adopt him:"This was a complicated matter, I explained to him. It would require a thorough review by my children, who would have to decide if they wanted him as their brother, and by my estate trustees."

• Be creative with what you have:"With a few key ingredients (you could buy fresh fruit once a week) and a microwave we created magnificent culinary delights."

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