When Keith left his career in finance in 2012, he began writing as a side hobby. His first project was The Weekly Nabe, a blog about the past and present of the neighborhoods of Brooklyn. Eventually, that turned into Blurred Lines, a series about the city’s shifting neighborhood boundaries for Curbed NY.
He has served as an expert on Jeopardy! on multiple occasions, most recently during the 2019 run of James Holzhauer, appearing on CNN’s Newsroom and BBC World’s Beyond 100 Days as well as writing an article for The New York Post.
In March 2017, Keith took over the “F.Y.I.” column, a series of questions and answers about the people, places and history of New York City, for the Sunday Metropolitan section of The New York Times.
Here are a few of his favorite F.Y.I. entries, some of which explain complicated concepts in simple terms:
- Why the Brooklyn-Queens Border Is Full of Dead People
- How Louis Armstrong Stadium Got Its Name
- Breaking Down the City’s Rezoning Process
- Weird Subway Quirks, Addressed
- How Do You Change the Light Bulbs in Carnegie Hall?
- The Ghosts of [New Year’s Eve] Parties Past
- The Odd Timing of City Elections in New York
- How Elevators Helped Send New York’s Game Shows Westward
Also since 2017, Keith has written trivia questions for Opinion columnist Frank Bruni’s monthly news quiz on Facebook Live, which he has had the privilege of co-hosting twice, in June 2018 and December 2018.
Keith has written several themed quizzes for major holidays and events; a few are below. (Good luck!)
Some other pieces of which he is particularly proud:
- A Shelter for Abuse Victims That Welcomes Furry ‘Children’ (WSJ)
- New York Bars Prepare for the Marathon (WSJ)
- Underground Empire: Riding High in Subway-Vendor Business (WSJ)
- Forensic Hydrology at the Gowanus Canal (NYT)
- Demolition Could be Sign of Times for Kentile Floors (WSJ)
- Still Waters Run Again in New York City Parks (WSJ)
- The 1891 Battle Over a Trolley Along Prospect Park West (Curbed NY)
Keith’s work extends to the visual medium, as well. For his Jeopardy! game theory blog, The Final Wager, he interviewed several top contestants, including 20-game champion Julia Collins and Tournament of Champions winners Dan Pawson and Ryan “Fritz” Holznagel.
Here, Fritz and Keith discuss everything from buzzer technique to fan mail to his career as a technical writer.