February 3, 2002
Something about mimes really ticks people off. Maybe it's that precious handing-out-flowers-in-the-Latin-Quarter thing. Or perhaps it's the vague air of menace associated with whiteface. Either way, if the anti-mime jokes, Web sites, "Why We Hate Mimes" lists and mimes-versus-clowns feuds are any indication, the art of pantomime doesn't look like much of a growth industry. But Derek Martin isn't just another arty gesturist.
April 15, 2012 |
Long before there were "real" housewives on television, actor-politicians and even potential celebrity politicians like Donald Trump, theme restaurants, virtual online vacations and Kim Kardashian, who makes her living by being Kim Kardashian, there was "The Image," historian Daniel Boorstin's prescient examination of a nation in transition, which celebrates the 50th anniversary of its publication this year. When "The Image" first appeared, one critic predicted that it would join William Whyte's "The Organization Man" and John Kenneth Galbraith's "The Affluent Society" as one of those seminal books that not only capture the zeitgeist but change the American mind-set.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 5, 2001
Last month the Museum of Contemporary Art posted 61 billboards throughout Los Angeles. Designed like curators' notes, with black letters set against a stark white backdrop, the billboards tersely describe features in the landscape around them, encouraging harried commuters to consider urban details they may have dismissed as mundane.
September 13, 1993 |
Howard Stern, Shock-Jock. The words are almost inseparable in any media description of the now top-rated morning radio host. And although the expression may be a convenient (and by now, conventional) shorthand for describing the complex Stern, it obscures a deeper, more noble truth about Stern and his broadcast.
July 9, 2000 |
A cluster of bronzed young boys floated on bodyboards in Hurricane Harbor, eager for the lifeguard to activate the wave pool. Many of them had paid $23 and waited half an hour to spend just nine minutes riding the 2-foot mechanically generated crests at Irvine's Wild Rivers Waterpark. Why a virtual beach when a real one is nearby? "There are better waves at the beach, but it's more accessible here," said Chase Paddack, dripping and winded from the pool.
June 14, 2010 |
Poor Flag Day. It has to be the single most ignored national holiday in an otherwise patriotic country that loves its holidays — and no, it's not just because we don't get the day off. Nor is it because Flag Day gets lost between Memorial Day and the Fourth of July. The real reason that most Americans ignore the June 14 holiday is that it's utterly redundant. In the United States, every day is Flag Day. That's right. In this flag-crazy world, Americans are arguably the most obsessed with our national banner.
November 20, 1989 |
Is Disneyland simply a fun place to take the kids or out-of-town visitors? Or, in the words of two Boston researchers, is it "a modern pilgrimage site," a sanctuary from the world that evokes a sense of paradise and purity? Never mind that most people believe they go to Disneyland just to speed down the Matterhorn or splash down a mountain.
October 16, 1997 |
As the turn of the century looms with hope and tension, the word "postmodern" has become de rigueur, a catch-all phrase for the future-leaning literature, philosophies and subcultures that we hope will take us into the 2000s. But few seem to know what the term actually means. "Postmodern American Fiction: A Norton Anthology" (W. W. Norton, 672 pages, $24.95) helps by presenting such writers as Thomas Pynchon, William S.