|Illustration by Bjorn Lie (from Dana Goodyear's "Mezcal Sunrise")|
These pieces are listed in the order they appeared in the magazine. Eventually, the list will have to be whittled down to ten – no easy task (they’re all excellent pieces). And I’ve learned from previous years not to decide prematurely. Last year, with about three weeks to go, I was sure Nick Paumgarten’s “Life Is Rescues” would be my #1 pick. Then Ben McGrath’s extraordinary “The Wayfarer” appeared, in the December 14 issue, and I had to revise my opinion (see here). By the way, where is McGrath? He’s a consistent Top Ten contender. But this year, he’s yet to appear. I miss him.