New York Times reporter Sarah Maslin Nir has announced the end of her Metro section nightlife column, The Nocturnalist.
“This is our final column,” Ms. Nir wrote today. “The last opportunity this reporter will have to refer to ourselves in the plural (that is, without raising concern for our mental health).”
In the past year and half, Ms. Nir and a small army of stringers documented more than 200 parties in her signature, slightly agog third-person plural.
But in between the charity galas and film premiers, Ms. Nir reported on the darker side of human society. In recent weeks her byline appeared on stories about grisly crimes and accidents in the region, including the Prospect Heights elevator murder and the tragic Connecticut house fire. Next month the Times’ program of rotating cub reporters will take her to Queens full-time, so, for now, she’s hanging up her stilettos.
“Both are time consuming beats,” Ms. Nir told Off the Record. “I don’t think you can do both well any more than you can be a cobbler and a baker at the same time.”
Five years after Joe Sexton and Bill Keller killed Boldface Names, Ms. Nir was the inadvertent architect of the gossip revival at the paper of record. In early 2010 she began writing City Room blog posts about quirky nighttime adventures and as rival the Wall Street Journal bolstered its nightlife coverage under Marshall Heyman, she eventually worked up to penning two multi-party columns a week.
Ms. Nir assured Off the Record that her after hours stamina won’t go to waste.
“Now I can go out for pleasure, which I haven’t done in one year eight months nine days,” she said. “And I can have a glass of wine if I want.”