HOME & GARDEN
November 29, 2013 |
The steakhouse may be America's greatest single achievement. Sure, there's that Constitution everyone's so impressed with, and baseball and Elizabeth Banks. But if you had to narrow it down to one thing, one crowning glorious creation that captures the nation's spirit and pastoral roots, it's probably a red-boothed steakhouse, where the waitresses are as old as the best wines, and platters of beef are presented presidentially. In a good steakhouse, every man feels part king, part cowboy.
November 21, 2013 |
The Coen brothers' new film, "Inside Llewyn Davis," covers one drain-circling week in the life of a marginally successful folk singer in 1961 New York City, inspired in part by the memoir of folk personality Dave Van Ronk. But to be clear, Llewyn Davis is not Bob Dylan. He's not Van Ronk. He's not even Oscar Isaac. "The description at the audition was, 'He is not Dylan. He is not the poet. He is a workman, a blue-collar guy from the boroughs.' So I latched on to that idea, the workman, and what that meant," says Isaac.
September 25, 2013 |
A poem by Charles Bukowski is featured in an advertisement for Dewar's, the 157-year-old blended scotch. If only the notoriously hard-drinking poet had lived long enough to reap the rewards of his endorsement. The L.A. poet died in 1994 at age 73, having lived long enough to go from being an antihero of the underground to being celebrated internationally for his writing. His life was fictionalized in the film " Barfly ," and his papers are now in the collection at the highbrow Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens in San Marino.
September 9, 2013 |
The FBI had its own notes on "dirty old man" Charles Bukowski. The writer was investigated by the agency as a civil servant with ties to the underground press -- and for being a self-described "dirty old man. " Recently National Book Award-winning author William T. Vollmann went public with his FBI surveillance, writing about his experiences of both being watched and reading the report. (At one point, as Vollmann writes in this month's Harpers , he was suspected of being the Unabomber.)
July 24, 2013 |
Endurance is a staple of performance art. In 1971, Chris Burden locked himself inside a small school locker at UC Irvine for five days. Three years later, Linda Mary Montano performed "Three Day Blindfold," groping her way around San Francisco with her eyes shrouded by a blindfold. That same year, for eight hours a day over three days, German artist Joseph Beuys was locked inside a New York gallery with a wild coyote. Marina Abramovic and Ulay Laysiepen spent 90 days in 1988 walking the length of the Great Wall of China from opposite ends until, finally meeting in the middle, they said their goodbyes and ended their 12-year collaboration.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 30, 2013
Ben Pleasants L.A. poet and playwright Ben Pleasants, 72, a Los Angeles poet and playwright who also championed the work of Charles Bukowski and John Fante in literary critiques, died of a heart attack April 18 in Crescent City, his wife, Paula, said. Born Aug. 6, 1940, in Weehawken, N.J., Pleasants graduated from Hofstra University on New York's Long Island in 1962 and within a few years enrolled in graduate English courses at UCLA. Beginning in the mid-1960s he wrote for the Los Angeles Free Press and regularly contributed book and theater reviews to The Times from the late 1960s until the mid-1980s.