March 7, 1999 |
In his best novel since his Pulitzer-winning "The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love" (1989), Oscar Hijuelos tells the story of Lydia Espan~a, a merchant's daughter from a Cuban seaside town who loves life just a little bit more than it deserves. Having grown up in a well-off middle-class family, Lydia has learned to expect multitudes: great loves, beautiful evenings, fragrant gardens and the eternal rush of the ocean just outside her door.
January 19, 1999 |
Dogs can sniff the humanity that was there: carnal essences, clothes, sweat and other bodily emanations, and the emotions that tincture them. They cannot sniff the humanity that will be there. The absence of a sniff factor tends to dilute the artistic energies of all but the best science fiction. Realism transposed into the future is not enough.
HOME & GARDEN
July 25, 1998 |
He's big, he's pink, and he stands on a wooden leg. Meet the Realmingo! Just when you thought there were enough pink lawn ornaments in your neighborhood, Don Featherstone, father of the original plastic pink flamingo, is reaching into the millennium with a life-size and more lifelike companion to his 41-year-old classic. "We've lived on our glory all these years," the affable Featherstone says with a smile. "It's time for something new." Featherstone, president of Union Products Inc.
March 8, 1998 |
Of all the cultural puzzlements I encountered when moving as a seventh-grader from the Bronx to eastern North Carolina in 1953, the most curious was the way my new friends and neighbors would say that they couldn't get the "John Brown'd" thing to work or that they would be "John Brown'd" before they'd do something they didn't like.
February 16, 1998 |
Eating disorders are among the most perplexing ailments of the psyche. Theories are offered and published regularly by the experts who treat the many young women (and some young men) with anorexia and/or bulimia. Marya Hornbacher's personal account of her long battle provides another window through which to contemplate these mysterious illnesses. Hornbacher, a freelance writer whose original, prize-winning essay published in Minneapolis/St.
October 5, 1997 |
When was the last time you thought of a drive-in movie screen as Moby Dick? No need to answer. This flying leap of the imagination is taken by Larry Baker in "The Flamingo Rising," a first novel that dares mix the Icarus, Oedipus and Earhart myths, risks a Romeo and Juliet update, plunders Dante, references the Bible, rewrites movie history and inside-outs the American past. Yet Baker's book is far from pretentious; it's one of the more endearingly adept debuts to come along in a while.
April 10, 1997 |
Hollywood likes to bathe in the glow of its glorious past--and make some money while it is at it. So, over the past few months, such films as the "Star Wars" trilogy and "The Godfather" have been re-released. Now comes another classic from the past: "Pink Flamingos." Yes, the movie that Variety called "one of the most vile, stupid and repulsive films ever made" has been cleaned up, in a matter of speaking, to celebrate Friday's 25th anniversary of its original release.