Showing posts with label The New Yorker. Show all posts
Showing posts with label The New Yorker. Show all posts

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Absolut Bowie: New Yorker 10.15.2001

This was the back cover advertisement for the New Yorker Magazine on October 15, 2001.

It was just a month after the horrible terrorist attack, and the articles included,  "Life in the largest Arab-American community, and a letter from China on "the disaster as it appeared in the provinces."

RIP David Bowie, for whom resting peacefully meant being cremated in New Jersey and having ashes spread across Bali.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

New Yorker Cartoonist: Revenge of the Pen

Charlie hebdo deaths2A poignant illustration and comment from cartoonist Liza Donnelly, forwarded to me: "My heart goes out to the families of the cartoonist and others who were killed in the senseless violence at the offices of Charlie Hebdo. Cartoons are incredibly powerful, and it is the responsibility of the cartoonist to use her power for good. The cartoonists who were killed did just that in their own way; it is a provocative way, but that is their right.  I mourn the loss of these cartoonists as champions of freedom of expression.  My solution to revenge their killing is to draw for peace at every opportunity."
Source: http://lizadonnelly.com/archives/revenging-deaths-french-cartoonists

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Alexander Payne At the Golden Globes

Yes it's true: the writer and film director Alexander Payne is of Greek descent.
So Payne was kind to the Greek Reporter shaggy-man behind the microphone below. According to the Alexander Payne Wikipedia biography, his real first name is Constantine and his ancestors come from Livadia, Aegio, the island of Syros, in Greece, and from Germany. He grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, studied Spanish and history at Stanford University, studied in Spain and later lived in Colombia.
So being Greek isn't the story he tells. (He is close to his elderly parents, a restaurateur-businessman and a French-Spanish teacher, according to a recent New Yorker profile.)
His latest film "Nebraska," one of four set in his home state, features black-and-white winter prairie landscapes that remind me of the ride from Chicago to Champaign, Illinois. That stark beauty helps tell the story. On storytelling, Payne paraphrases Anton Chekhov: "If you want emotional effects, you have to place them against a cold background, so they stand out in relief." (see The New Yorker on Payne Oct. 28, 2013, p. 50). Critics say Payne can be condescending in trying to balance satire and sympathy in his characters. He says he is "deathly afraid of beign too sentimental." Payne told The Guardian in an interview that evoking emotion is the goal:
"Sentimentality is a dirty word to me. It implies trying to wring tears from the audience. I don't want to do any of that crap. If you want to be moved, fine. If you don't, fine. I'm not going to force anything out of you."
I find something admirable about Payne's tenacity, his apparent un-Hollywood existence, and the length of time he spends scouting, writing, filming and editing. Even with success, The Guardian claimed he was not prolific -- now with more than six films to his name, an Oscar and new award nominations.
Creative minds should be condescending, given all the judgement one is constantly subject to.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Gino Macropodio & the Dead Lagoon

That Italian-Greek name is the needle that sews together a great read in this week's New Yorker.
While not stellar writing, there are some hysterical anecdotes that only an American son of privilege could acquire in the ratty waters of Venice.

Highlights:
• "Inmates were dangerously crazy women, not just moody ones."
• Rats, gun-runners ..."fighting certain taxi drivers for the city's cocaine trade .. "
• "Baby Fragola came in fast, blasting techno, holding the collar ..."
• "From the stomach, not the balls!"
• Macropodio "once rowed three miles across the lagoon with six friends to drink 40 bottles of wine. And then rowed back." (Fact checkers missed the math on this!)

Read "Open Water," the tale of "Kekquakea," by Sean Wilsey. Page 40 of the April 22 New Yorker.
More on the Venice pollution and water problems in this BBC article on a temporary Grand Canal boat ban.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Must Reads: Middle East Minority Perspectives

Some important international headlines to ponder, glued as we've been to East Coast hurricane news and U.S. presidential campaign coverage:

The largest Christian denomination in the Middle East, the Coptic Orthodox in Egypt, named a new leader this weekend, the BBC reports. The photos are inspiring, with an explanation of how the choice among the top-three candidates was left "in the hands of God."

From the New Yorker: An absolutely gripping tale about a U.S. Iraq war veteran who, tormented by a battle where Americans killed civilians including three members of an Armenian Christian family, sought out his victims' relatives now living in California. In a story highlighed by NPR and Charlie Rose, read how Dexter Filkins' interviews at a Baghdad hospital and subsequent stories facilitated forgiveness from the sins of war. Journalism at its best.

Then, a BBC essay on Izmir, the West Coast city once called Smyrna. It is among the Turkish locales flooded with Syrian refugees. This piece addresses what we have been asked to forget: Turkey still is "scarred by wanton killing and destruction in World War I." Fergan Keane writes,
"Gone are the streets in which the voices of Greeks, Turks, Armenians, Levantines and Jews mingled ... prayed and made music and told stories in the narrow lanes of the bazaar and by the glittering water of the Aegean."
That brings us to New York Times review last week of wildly popular Turkish movie, "Conquest 1453," dramatizing the Ottoman capture of Constantinople, now Istanbul. Fascination with the era has launched TV shows and other projects. The author juxtaposes opinion:
  • Says Melis Behlil, a film studies professor at Kadir Has University: “The Ottoman revival is good for the national ego" ... but films like "Conquest 1453 are engaging in cultural revisionism and glorifying the past without looking at history in a critical way."
  • Says Burak Temir, a German-Turkish actor who learned to sword fight and use a bow and arrow for an Ottoman-era show: “It makes me proud to be Turkish.”
Turkey is diligently working to establish its political dominance as Egypt, Iraq and Syria struggle. Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan just met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, underscoring tensions as Turkey pushes 2023 membership in the European Union, reports Der Speigel, the German newspaper. The Israeli newspaper Haaretz emphasizes his plans to visit the Gaza strip.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Nora Ephron, No Paltry Sum

Legendary writer and journalist Nora Ephron died today.
Her work was full of fabulous wit and juicy detail, which is apparent in this New Yorker essay I saved and read several times. It covers death and inheritance, and there's even a Greek angle.
The New York Times obituary has more detail -- love that she started as a fledgling city reporter in 1960s New York and, albeit coming from a family full of writers, she succeeded in Hollywood.
Her secret to life? Husband number three. "Marry an Italian," she said.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Turkey's Deep State

The March 12 New Yorker magazine is getting some buzz for a piece on Turkey's secular "deep state" that author Dexter Filkin calls...
"a presumed clandestine network of military officers and their civilian allies who, for decades, suppressed and sometimes murdered dissidents, Communists, reporters, Islamists, Christian missionaries, and members of minority groups—anyone thought to pose a threat to the secular order, established in 1923 by Mustafa Kemal, or Atatürk. Friends and colleagues say Erdoğan worried that the deep state would never allow him to govern. But, to the surprise of many, he has pulled Turkey closer to the West, opening up the economy and becoming a crucial go-between for the West with Palestine, Iran, and Syria," says Filkins in this week's edition, the one with Mitt Romney in a car on the cover.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Schwartzman on iPad

You have to watch Jason Schwartzman's hysterical video for the New Yorker iPad application. Mobile tablets are a good idea for many reasons, including avoiding blindness from smartphone overuse. And to keep up with all the new publications for iPad, like News Corp's  The Daily, the new mobile "newspaper" from my bosses. Not to mention Barron's swell iPad app.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Happy New Year


Times Square confetti 2011
 Catching up on reading. Did you know Alexander the Great introduced bananas to the "West" in 327 B.C.? See "We Have No Bananas," in this week's New Yorker about a blight threatening the fruit.
Separately, India is overrun with plastic bags, and one banker suggests in the Wall Street Journal that incentivizing rag pickers to collect them is a solution.
Finally, a fellow Couch Surfing enthusiast in India and blogger has taken fascinating trips (one with her mother!) to remote India locales. Here she reports on the proliferation of Chinese noodles in India. But read the rest of her blog.
Happy New Year from Times Square, where four days later, the confetti lingers (see photo).

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

I Read Too Much Today

As things "wind down" in Iraq, reflections on Baghdad journalists who lost their lives.

How the multi-billionaire Koch brothers are financing think-tanks, Tea Party rallys and Libertarian causes with inocuous-sounding organizations. The August 23 New Yorker (summarized in August 29 New York Times OpEd)

The bed bug beat: desperate people are setting houses ablaze. The Wall Street Journal

India's second quarter economic growth was near 8.8%, yet a diarrhea outbreak is killing people and 900 are sick. (Wall Street Journal story and video)

Obituary of Colin Tennant, a Caribbean bon-vivant who lived off the industrial success of his Scottish forebears. In New York Social Diary

Times wedding announcement for Dr. Mehmet Oz's daughter, who married a Chicago man in Serbian Orthodox and Swedenborgian ceremonies. Dr. Oz once said he has an affinity for Sufi Islam, with his Turkish roots, but apparently three was a crowd.

The fine print on Yoga Bunny Detox drink: "Best when chilled, as indeed we all are." (From Pret A Manger, coming to Chicago soon.)