April 27, 2013 |
To get a full sense of country singer George Jones, who died Friday at age 81, it's important to understand the workings of his complicated, admittedly troubled heart. The engine of his remarkable talent, it powered Jones to transform well-crafted words and melody into universal truths. To country music's benefit, Jones never hesitated to examine the struggles of his lonely heart (or overextended liver), both the consequences of its actions and the destruction that often accompanied its failings.
April 21, 2013 |
I've tumbled down another rabbit hole, wound up in Long Beach, which isn't a worst-case scenario, though close. The cars here all need mufflers, the young fans need more clothes. What kind of sordid little event is this? Indy car racing had always been pretty much a mystery to me, then it split off into two separate circuits, then NASCAR got huge (overwhelming it), then suddenly the big names aged out of the sport. Or worse, died. Sure, more pretty-boy drivers came along, but they seemed like robots.
April 20, 2013 |
A ruthlessly self-aware political wife reconsidering her choices. A sensual socialite facing down an oppressive age with informed good humor. A group of young women so busy defying social expectations they've forgotten to have any of their own. A working mother with a gift for passionate stillness. A recently recovered drama addict determined to save the world. A bipolar CIA operative, an optimistic bureaucrat, a frightened sex slave turned canny warrior. The female leads of "House of Cards," "Parade's End," "Girls," "The Good Wife," "Enlightened," "Homeland," "Parks and Recreation" and "Game of Thrones" are very different sorts of women who share one important trait: We have never seen their like before.
April 16, 2013 |
What do you think is the leading cause of accidental death in California? If you said car accidents, you were wrong. In 2009, the most recent year for which statistics are available, 3,200 people in the state died in automobile crashes, while 3,561 people died of drug overdoses, the bulk of them involving prescription pills. That high number of deaths is particularly tragic because we have a powerful weapon against drug overdoses, and it isn't used nearly as often as it could be. Naloxone (trade name: Narcan)
April 1, 2013 |
While Cory Monteith's character on "Glee" decides what he wants to be when he grows up, Monteith in real life has decided to enter rehab. The actor "has voluntarily admitted himself to a treatment facility for substance addiction," his rep told the Ministry on Monday. "He graciously asks for your respect and privacy as he takes the necessary steps towards recovery. " Monteith's "Glee" costar and real-life love interest Lea Michele, 26, passed along her good wishes publicly.
March 30, 2013 |
Day 1 My anxiety grows as I get to Larkspur, several hours into my drive to Spirit Rock. I stop for a snack, worried the food will be hippie-style brown rice casseroles. When I pull into the parking lot, I'm told I can carry my bags up the hill or put them in a pickup. I heft them, worried it's too indulgent to do otherwise. Later, walking to dinner, people talk tentatively; it's our last chance to speak to one another, and rather than motivating a full-on chat stream, that makes me pretty uninterested in small talk.
March 29, 2013 |
Christopher Knafelc, 32, was waiting for a train in north Philadelphia when fate gave him a chance to redeem a life of pain. Security footage at the Cecil B. Moore station on the Broad Street Line -- and broadcast nationally on cable television and on the Web -- shows a man walk straight off the platform and onto the tracks about 12:40 p.m. Thursday. Knafelc, who was sitting about 20 feet away on a bench, jumped down to help the man. A train was due to arrive in moments. “I had a plan if a train came I was going to roll him underneath,” Knafelc told WPVI-TV, “or if I couldn't, I was going to ask someone to jump down and help me roll him.” He held the man's head and neck stable until firefighters arrived.
March 28, 2013 |
CAIRO -- The Egyptian government says it is taking steps to battle drug addiction, especially among young people, which has escalated amid deepening social and economic problems since the 2011 uprising that toppled former President Hosni Mubarak. The young are “more easily influenced,” said Amr Othman, the director of the organization for treatment of addiction and abuse. “They easily get into drugs and are sometimes pressed into drug trafficking.” A report by the National Council for Battling Addiction attributes increased substance abuse to the availability and affordability of street drugs, especially in “light of the security vacuum society is witnessing.” Officials said a lack of police presence has allowed dealers to push new drugs onto the market.
March 23, 2013 |
The powerful narcotic popped up on the cultural grid around the turn of the millennium. A Texas producer-remixer named DJ Screw paid homage to its woozy, heavy-lidded high by dramatically slowing down beats and vocals to replicate the drug's sleepwalker euphoria. Among Southern rappers, the chemical mixture - called "sizzurp" on the street - soon became as ubiquitous as gold jewelry. This wasn't some exotic new hallucinogen. In fact, it was usually mixed with fruit soda and sipped from oversized plastic foam cups.
March 21, 2013 |
What might ringmaster-of-the-subconscious Fellini have done with the peculiar phenomenon of reality TV? The gifted Italian filmmaker Matteo Garrone (the excellent "Gomorrah") gives us his own magically eccentric homage of sorts to that hypothetical with the psychologically astute, dreamlike gut-punch that is "Reality. " Predicated on the idea that the promise of 15 minutes of fame is as treacherous a mental minefield as instant celebrity's fizzled aftermath, Garrone gives us Napoli fishmonger Luciano (Aniello Arena)