Above the Law is “still accepting your colorful anecdotes about Nina Totenberg,” whom they call “the grande dame of the Supreme Court press corps.”
I’m seated in the press section at the Supreme Court. The session is about to begin. Everyone is seated, and the room is silent. The time is 9:59 — one minute before the start of the 10 AM session.
Suddenly Nina Totenberg shows up. Now, if I showed up that late, I would quietly slip into the back row. But not Nina.
Instead, Nina sweeps grandly up the aisle, to the first row of the press section. She approaches the reporter sitting on the aisle, taps him on the shoulder, and says, matter-of-factly: “I need to sit there.”
Of course the reporter scurries out of “her” seat. Because nobody says no to Nina.
And a close second:
True story. Nina Totenberg used to live [a few] blocks away from me on Capitol Hill.
A few years back, she put her house on the market and had an open house. The house was perfectly fine — nothing particularly grand or tacky.
The one thing that stuck out, however, was that she left her nylons hanging to dry in the bathroom. Classy.