The Case of the Purloined Portrait

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(The portrait, like most of the Review’s valuables, was hanging near the toilet.) If you were here, reader, you may have noticed a single tear roll down Jeff’s cheek, as he vowed to “hunt the vermin down.”  
Cooler heads prevailed, and we set up an anonymous tips page, promising a reward in exchange for information on Grass’s whereabouts. But I’m not that reader. Suffice to say it was not our most successful fundraising event. ON SORROW FLOATS LAUGHTER. —GÜNTER GRASS, 2017. Jeff paced the office, disconsolate, biting his knuckle. Imagine our surprise, then, when we arrived this morning to find a package from an out-of-state address. And then … we waited.  
Dan Piepenbring is the web editor of The Paris Review. SORRY FOR PURLOINING YOUR PICTURES. As for Günter, we started to give him up for lost. Literally. ALL GENIUSES MENSTRUATE. AND THE SUN HAS SPOTS. In the sixties, for instance, after a Spring Revel, two rental pianos were left outside all night in the pouring rain and had to be replaced. Instead, the Review   salutes this “Grass” for doing the right thing and accepts his apology. The portrait, now recovered. Even a taunt from the thief would’ve been welcome. EVEN THE FLOWERING OF ART ISN’T PURE. IN THE HEART OF ROARING LURKS SILENCE. From now on, like a cheap motel, we’re nailing the pictures down. Our digital director, Jeffery Gleaves, discovered the theft the next morning, when he noticed a Grass-shaped hole on the bathroom wall. It was not our worst morning after. We checked our tips page, but hot scoops weren’t exactly pouring in. These lines, with the exception of the last, are from Grass’s Dog Years. On a postcard of the Chicago skyline, the penitent partygoer had written a note in block capitals:
NO IDEA STAYS PURE. Inside was our purloined portrait—along with two framed photos that, in all honesty, no one had noticed were missing. But sometimes things get carried away. In fact, we’d received precisely zero. As Page Six reports, a party to launch our Summer issue last week was marred by petty larceny: someone absconded with a portrait of Günter Grass   drawn by Tomi Ungerer in 1965.  
The Paris Review is renowned for our parties, and we take pride in that. An uncharitable reader might point out that they constitute another act of theft.