Anthony Caputi teaches English at Cornell University. He has written critical books on drama and comedy. His published fiction includes a novel, Loving Evie, and an O. Henry prize story. 
Dec 01 1991
Luck Be A Lady!
He could never decide if he was a gambler pretending to be an accountant or an accountant pretending to be a gambler. To be a gambler you had to make your living by betting, and he didn’t. To be an accountant you were supposed to be a model of pecuniary conservatism, and he wasn’t. Most of his friends thought the scale tipped in favor of accountant. Unlike most gamblers he had never had great swings of fortune, from storybook winnings to losses taking you over your head into debt, and like an accountant he was careful, cautious even too cautious, some might say, to be a gambler. But he didn’t agree. In fact, he was no great distance between the two, particularly if you excluded from gambling the games of pure chance.
Sep 01 1982
The Gala Dinner
One thing, at least, was clear: he hadn’t given those long gray years in the candy store for this. Something had gone wrong; somewhere in the project to horde nickels and dimes over years of cokes, banana splits, and chewing gum there was a fraud.
Dec 01 1980
The Breasts of Young Women
He tossed lines to the girls coming off the dancefloor the way some people feed pigeons, smiling, exuberant, as if the pigeons were really feeding him, or promising to. “Nice number ‘the A-train’.” “You’re looking good. I was watching.” He stood sideways so that he could play his black eyes over both the dancers and those waiting. Through the dancers I could see him talking, always talking, heroic line of his Clark Gable mustache rising and falling.