(Ben Brantley’s article appeared in The New York Times, 11/7.)

I don’t know about you, but I spent election night with my family. I experienced that childlike need, which so often seizes us in fraught times, to be among like-minded folks as anxious and uncertain as I am about, oh, the presidency, the hurricane, the decline of American civilization, our own sorry selves.

The Apples are not, for the record, my blood kin. But after spending both Tuesday night and the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks with them, I have come to feel as closely related to them as if we had grown up under the same roof. They annoy, tickle and inspire me; and they make me feel wanted and generous and unkind and guilty — and about as comfortable and uncomfortable at the same time as anybody can. As I said, they’re family.


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