OUR LEAD story this month comes in the form of a comic book, albeit a comic book that relies neither on fatuous slapstick nor on pop-art adventure. Rather, these are comic-book pages that reflect the horrors of the Holocaust and the nightmare of its after math—and they do so with the richness of detail that at tends the serious documentary or historical novel.
REGISTER REDUX_ THE 1986 Esquire Register is the kind of stuff that makes me want to take up reading full time. I’ll be thinking about Jobs, Styron, Winger, and your success for a long time—and that’s what good writing is supposed to make you do.
At one time certain members of my family thought I might have a career as an artist. More specifically, as a cartoonist, since among the more common adolescent pursuits, I also turned out what I thought to be rather pointed drawings on any number of subjects.
Every third or fourth issue, ” began an editorial in Esquire more than fifty years ago, “we swear off mentioning the Prince of Wales, getting sicker, if possible, of talking about him than you are of hearing about him. ” That was May 1935.
I live exactly ten blocks from the New York City chapter of the Hell’s Angels and had about decided that all the things my friends had warned me about riding a motorcycle were true. It’s foolish. It’s dangerous. It can lead to permanent tattoos.
In the backwoods of Idaho and Montana—in places designated as “wilderness areas” today—there used to live a breed of men some believe were the last free men on earth. They were trappers, prospectors, moonshiners, men who made a living selling beaver furs to Sears, Roebuck or who simply lived well, even if their marksmanship was poor.
Wine has been made for some five thousand years, yet the techniques for preserving it have remained at an alarmingly primitive level. For most of recorded history, libations were poured directly from barrel to drinking vessel and consumed on the spot.
The dance halls and nightclubs that dot the Louisiana highways from Lafayette to Shreveport don’t look like much. Their owners don’t put much faith in appearances. Most don’t even have their names out front—just one of those portable rental signs with the name of whatever zydeco or Cajun band is playing, the special drink of the evening, and the words HOT BOUDIN.
I feel bad for the fellows who tried to rob our house, I really do. They had no idea when they slit the screen on that midsummer night that we were about to torture them, that they’d entered a sort of Burglars’ Hell. You see, the burglars couldn’t find anything to steal.
In which Allan and Anne Hertle run into some mysterious highwaymen
<p>YOU MAY think it’s a piece of cake, traveling the American Beat. You don’t run into the cases we do. THE CALL came from Allan Hertle, seventy-one, of Glenview, Illinois. Hertle and his wife, Anne, also seventy-one, had been on a trip to the East Coast and were driving back through Pennsylvania, on their way home.</p>
<p>A NEWS release from Stanford University made my heart leap. “You can have normal knees after 100,000 miles, ” it led off. The speaker was Dr. Peter Wood, who— the release went on to say— “after 50 years of running, has the legs and the mileage to prove it.”</p>
It’s an old but durable jest: Muffin is in town from Connecticut for lunch, dressed, as is her custom, in sensible shoes, a pleated gray skirt, and an unprepossessing but perfectly serviceable cotton blouse. Suddenly, to her horror, Muffin spies Molly, her roommate back at Smith, as she saunters into the dining room wearing a stunning sable coat, a low-cut Parisian dress, and a sufficient preponderance of diamonds and emeralds to stock a small jewelry store.
There used to be but one way to get a cheap first-class ticket; it was called the night-first rate, listed in the Official Airline Guide under the dyslexic designation FN. FN tickets provided first-class seats at coach or near-coach prices, but only for flights taking off in the dead of the night.
—Lawrence J. Gallagher When it comes to real estate, the line between foresight and clairvoyance can be a thin one indeed. But here are three areas where, for reasons of geography, economic climate, and proximity to metropolitan areas, picking up a second home can be not only the most fun but the smartest thing to do with your money.
Some men are an island. Until, like Atlantis, they sink. I think of Chuck, my unfortunate mentor, who saw the world as a festival of jerks, and so was treated like one all the way out the door. And Horton the Hatchetman, brought in to shear away our unsightly corporate flab, who arrived without consorts and was expunged likewise.
One of the newest forms of life insurance is flexible-premium variable life, also known as universal II. Within the last year some twenty companies have started marketing such policies. How exactly does universal II work? Here is how Equitable, the third-largest life-insurance com pany and one of the first to intro duce a universal II product, has set up its Incentive Life policy.
<p>All too infrequently, a book comes along that’s as daring as it is acclaimed. Art Spiegelman’s Maus, published last year, was just such a book. In its unlikely comic-strip form, it told a searing tale of the Holocaust and won a wide and enthusiastic audience.</p>
<p>SUMMER 1986: Robert Longo, shortish, dark, wearing all black and heavy boots that are half-open and clank when he walks, is staring at an enormous white painting, a blowup of a hand—his hand—on the wall of his four-thousand-square-foot loft in downtown Manhattan.</p>
Setting sail on a father’s faith, a son’s courage, and the timeless lure of the sea
<p>My old college roommate is a sailor. He was on the Harvard sailing team when we lived together many years ago, and while the theater has been his profession, sailing has been his passion. I am not a sailor; I have been a willing passenger on many sailboats, and I have noticed a difference between David Hays and the sailors who came later in my life.</p>
The phrase “like a page out of Esquire” made its debut in the culture about half a century ago as a bit of repartee in one of the Thin Man movies. The way we remember it, Mrs. Thin Man (Myma Loy) is in the kitchen whipping up a little something when the Thin Man himself (William Powell), looking more than usually dapper, makes his entrance.
CONTENTS GUTTING LOOSE FEATURES LETTING GO: TIRED OF DANCING IN THE SAME OLD Suit?................. F26 TYING IT ON: FURTHER ADVENTURES IN UPPER Management.............. F34 STEPPING OUT: E. G. SMITH, SOCKMEISTER by Lisa Grunwald.... F41
Facts, figures, and footnotes on today’s and tomorrow’s fashions
If you’re in a men’s store this spring and you’re thinking that there is a bigger selection of shirts, it’s probably because the store has selected “waterfall layouts” to replace the conventional displays. The new layouts feature a rippling wall of shirts, creating a veritable Niagara of colors and fabrics.
Presenting a highly idiosyncratic fashion lexicon from A to Z
There are more than 480,000 entries in the Oxford English Dictionary, not all of which deal with men’s fashion. But when you’re trying to parse the lingo of a fast-talking salesman and his tailor sidekick, it can feel as if you’re being hit on the head with all sixteen volumes.
Setting out on the elusive trail off a truly manly smell
It's difficult to be ambivalent about the subject of male cologne, but I know how hard you guys try. I went to school with a man so confused he wore patchouli oil and Brut at the same time. I asked my husband how he felt about men’s cologne and he said, “I’m for it.
When a man steps out on a dance floor, he needs faith, he needs hope, and, quite often, he needs charity. Above all, he needs a little class—a relaxed look, playful, yet elegant. The eight suits on these pages can be worn for work as well as play, and they have the ideal combination of refinement and flair.
In the perpetual search for self-expression, there’s an opening above the waist and between the lapels that should be seen as a window of opportunity. Try a simple shirt with a fancy tie, a fancy shirt with a simple tie, a gold tie clip, a pair of braces, a subtle pattern that quietly shows what you’d really rather be doing.
A pioneer in color and comfort explores the joy of socks
<p>Consider the sock. Like all items of clothing and most body parts, it gets a little silly the more one thinks about it. It covers the feet, but so do shoes. It keeps the legs warm, but so do pants. Why doesn’t it have toes, the way gloves have fingers? Why doesn’t it go up over the knee? Why doesn’t it have buttons, or laces, or zippers? Why aren’t there socks for ears and noses? Consider the world without socks.</p>
<p>This is what Tom Hanks thinks he looks like: “I’ve got kind of a bizarre body, a big ass, and fat thighs. I’ve got a goofy-looking nose, ears that hang down, eyes that look like I’m part Chinese and are a funny color. I’ve got really small hands and feet, long limbs, narrow shoulders, and a gut I’ve got to keep watching.</p>
Shopping for clothes is often inspired by necessity and carried out by rote. You know where to find what you need. You go out to get it. But, as you’ll see on these pages, a store can offer much more. At its best, it offers surprises—sometimes of mood, sometimes of merchandise.
Twist's meager plight was never more poignant than when Dickens described him trudging to the workhouse: “Mr. Bumble walked on with long strides, and little Oliver, firmly grasping his gold-laced cuff, trotted beside him inquiring...whether they were ‘nearly there.’”
I have a tie that belonged to my grandfather. It’s an epic piece of neck equipment—slick, dark-blue silk with white pinstripes and outsize white polka dots, three and one-quarter inches at its broad bottom, cut to hang Huey P. Long-style high up on the stomach.
Where to buy the clothing featured in the spring Esquire Collection
Cover: Michel Savoia sport jacket at Madonna, New York; Fred Segal, Los Angeles. For information contact: Michel Savoia Couture, 68 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York 10011. The Gap T-shirt at The Gap Stores nationwide. For information contact: The Gap, 3 East Fifty-fourth Street, NewYork, New York 10022.
With the gilded play boys turn to bronzer under the winter sun, that’s when summer's beach fashions are born. For example, these things which were prime at Nassau are now par for Nantucket and points thereabout. The sented figure shows a silk and wool beach shirt, worn with a pair of blue sulcloth beach shorts, with a pair of knitted swimming trunks underneath.
<p>Managua could have been dreamed by Gertrude Stein. With no center and a destroyed past, the city does not seem to be there at all; it can be found in desultory forms. Block after block of wasteland and brick piles are followed by three movie theaters, two vacant lots, a marketplace choked with people buying and selling.</p>
<p>The early morning silence of the graveyard is broken by the approach of a car. I duck behind a stone as the sound of the engine rises toward the gate and falls away among the streets of the town. Sitting on a flat marble slab, Tory continues cutting pieces of masking tape, which she attaches to the back of her hand.</p>
I am at liberty. A writer at liberty is a writer without anything to do, and no real idea of what he is next going to do. Of course I am not totally at liberty. I have this column. For one week every month I sit in front of my typewriter pounding it out, trying not to think of the three weeks after I finish when I will be at liberty until the next deadline rolls around.
For almost twenty years Tom Waits has lurked in the gutters of the pop-music fringe. His songs—part Tin Pan Alley, part beat poetry—have the quality of tattered postcards from relatives who’ve gone off the deep end. This spring, Island Records will release his twelfth album, Frank’s Wild Years, a collection of songs from a “play with music” he co-wrote and starred in last summer with Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre Company.