AS A MORE THAN twenty-five-year subscriber to and reader of Esquire, I can tell you about the times the magazine’s been off stride. I’ve wondered in recent months whether it was Esquire or me—had I finally aged to the point that I could no longer expect it to appeal to me?
ADULTERY IS A PHENOMENON so big, so complex, so rampant, that even God gave it two commandments. Look it up. There’s the big one, number seven (Thou shalt not commit...), and then, just to hit the point home, he gave us number ten (about coveting thy neighbor’s wife).
HERE’S ONE STORY that’s not likely to be told in Bob Evans’s forthcoming tell-all, The Kid Stays in the Picture. The preternaturally tanned Evans, who produced some of the biggest film hits in the Seventies—Love Story, Rosemary’s Baby, Chinatown—and had some famous bombs in the Eighties, has long enjoyed a reputation as one of Hollywood’s great ladies’ men.
WHAT WOULD the world have been like without Oliver North? The senatorial candidate from Virginia— who admitted to shredding potentially damaging Iran-contra documents—decided to edit a revealing passage from his autobiography, Under Fire, that dealt with his thoughts of suicide.
ONCE A canary, always a canary. Ivan Boesky wants to be a singer. The Talmudic scholar (and former insider trader) was in San Diego recently with some friends of his son Billy’s who have a band called Mariana Trench. He recorded some duets with one of them and said that his dream is to perform an evening of Leonard Cohen songs.
LOOKING FOR an erudite tan? Try Dick Cavett’s nude beach. The buff talk-show host has a summerhouse in Montauk, New York, known as Cavett’s Cove, where he can be seen— fully clothed, of course—chatting to his more exposed guests. One visitor says the scene is made complete by a driftwood sign that reads FUTURE LOVE PARADISE.
IT’S NOT exactly puking on a Japanese prime minister, but White House social secretary Ann Stock recently committed a political faux pas. Stock, who once worked for a department store, pitched in on a couple of charity events the store sponsored and included her White House business card in her mailings. “That’s a no-no,” says a source. “It suggests the administration endorses the event.”
NO ONE EVER ACCUSED PR woman Peggy Siegal of not paying attention to the details—or of keeping her mouth shut. Recently, Siegal was in her office at HBO (where she is a consultant) planning a party when a shipment of flowers arrived for the affair.
A COLD WAR erupted recently at Random House between Boris Yeltsin and his editor, Peter Osnos, over the U. S. version of Yeltsin’s memoir, The Struggle for Russia, though Osnos denies any tension. Osnos wanted Yeltsin to update the book’s ending so it would “be as current as possible,” says a source.
IT’S PROBABLY not too wise to lob an anti-Semitic crack at Steven Spielberg. Shortly after Spielberg bought a car for a friend at a Santa Monica car dealership, a salesman bragged, “I sold a car to a Jew for full price.” Another customer overheard the comment and called Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment, and he immediately canceled the order. The car dealer profusely apologized to Spielberg and asked if there was anything he could do to make it right. Spielberg, however, would have nothing to do with it, says a source, and bought another car.
Now THAT Diane Sawyer is a Conrributor to Forrest Sawyer’s magazine show, Day One, ABC sources say there’ll be more than a battle of last names. “Forrest can’t be happy about it,” says one network source. “Diane is bringing her own [production] unit, and the word is that she’ll make the show her own.
NEVER ACCEPT candy from former Colorado senator Tim Wirth. A group of people whose relatives were killed on Pan Am flight 103 went to Washington recently to discuss the bombing with Wirth, who is the state department counselor. The group had been waiting awhile when one of the visitors, a middle-aged Irish-Catholic woman, reached into a bowl for a treat wrapped in brightly colored foil.
PUBLICLY, Nancy Reagan will not talk about the current residents of her old digs at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. But privately, says one Beltway source, she is obsessed with Bill and Hillary Clinton. It seems that the former First Lady just can’t say no to any juicy details about the President and his alleged extracurricular activities.
IT’S DIFFICULT to say exactly what Stomp-the show or the eponymous troupe that performs it-is about. Phrases like “junkyard minimalism” and “industrial vaudeville” are apt (and sure sound thoughtful), but neither hints at the sheer joy in seeing eight people careen around a stage, banging on trash cans, oil drums, and even (no lie) kitchen sinks.
THERE’S nothing I don’t like about Chicago. To my mind, it’s the most majestic of American cities and one of the friendliest— virtues that extend to its restaurants. There’s the baronial interior of the Berghoff (opened in 1898), the splendid art-deco appointments of the Wrigley Building Restaurant (now a private dining room called, inelegantly, the 410 Club), the graffiti-splashed vitality of Cafe Ba-Ba-Reeba!, the glorious setting of the Signature Room at the 95th, atop the John Hancock Center.
THIRTY YEARS ON THE PLANET have left few visible traces of adulthood on Joanna Going’s girlish face. Indeed, one strives manfully to see her as something other than a collection of adorable animal parts—doe eyes, swan neck, and the rest, all the traditional objectifications reserved for young women of delicate aspect and exceptional comeliness.
Where to catch the world’s biggest salmon on a fly
AN INSOMNIAC sun backlights the sourdough clouds that hug Alaska in June. Down below, the Kenai River carries the first of the glacier melt that will turn it into toothpaste by summer’s end. In the middle of this opaque universe stands a fisherman.
LITERARY FIGURES dot the tables at mystery writer Walter Mosley’s favorite Greenwich Village lunch spot. That Mosley, forty-two, who until six years ago had never written a word, has taken his place among them is due to his tales of a reluctant detective named Easy Rawlins.
Sure, Arkansas is one corrupt little wingding of favoritism. Hey, y’all, just like Washington, D. C.!
<p>I'VE BEEN LOITERING, with intent, around Little Rock this spring, keeping an eye out for Whitewater developments, coming to think that about half the state wouldn’t mind seeing Bill and Hillary brought down, while the other half would hate it, but also finding out that what pisses off everybody, everybody, is this patronizing image of Arkansas as incestuous, as in, Bless ’em, they can’t help it, or as in, Father, forgive them, for they know not what they screw (Luke 23:34, give or take a word).</p>
The tortured musings of Robert Fiske’s favorite pen pal
FOR WHITEWATER enthusiasts, Josh Steiner has emerged as a cross between Bob Packwood and John Dean. Steiner, the precocious twenty-eight-year-old top aide to Treasury Secretary Lloyd Bentsen, was guilty of the great 1990s Washington indiscretion: He kept a personal diary.
Kneecapping: It’s not just for sociopaths anymore.
I AM AT A COCKTAIL PARTY. Don’t get the wrong idea. I don’t go to many of them anymore. Lunch is my gift, so I’ve developed that. You stick with what you know You play the games you can win. You don’t play to place or show. You do...whatever you can; that’s the point.
For the philanderer, getting caught is the second-worst thing that can happen
<p>THE IMPORTANT THING, he says, is to know when to push and when not to push. Women say no so easily to a married man. Luckily, he’s always been good at sensing when a woman liked him. He is sure he could have slept with any of them three or four dates before he did.</p>
Whether it happens or not, adultery shadows every marriage
<p>IT PAINS ME in retrospect that I didn’t give her more fun and a better time. We were married for a quarter of a century, and she died the same year, 1993, that our divorce went through. Although from opposite backgrounds, we were both by temperament conservators, which gave us something in common and lent us an extra stability That, with the illuminating presence of our child, helped us last.</p>
<p>HE IS, OF COURSE, out of control. And that is how he must be. Aggravation is an art form in his hands. Annoyance stokes him, sends him forth, gives him purpose. Ruffled, he becomes electric, full of play and possibility. There is magnificence in his every irritation, and he knows this.</p>
Bob Tyrrell, the aging frat-boy editor of The American Spectator, is having a grand ol’ party blowing smoke up Bill Clinton’s agenda.
<p>IT’S WEDNESDAY night at the Palm on Nineteenth Street in Washington, D. C., and the place is packed with Clinton-era hotshots. Seated beneath a gallery of leering mugs belonging to local legends such as Teddy Kennedy, John Tower, and Tip O’Neill, R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr.— known to his friends and enemies alike as just plain Bob—looks almost harmless, which is the last thing anyone in Washington would say these days about the founder and editor of The American Spectator.</p>
<p>JOHN KEEGAN on the meaning: of June 6,1944, then, now, and always I had my hair cut on June 5, 1944. I remember that with certainty because, precociously, I tried to start a conversation with the barber on the entry of Allied troops into Rome, which had been reported that day.</p>
The Van Winkle sisters are down with the brothers. The good people of Morocco, Indiana, are down on the sisters. And Mikey—well, his hair may grow out, but this is one farm boy who’ll never be the same.
E. Jean Carroll
<p>Fifty miles south of Gary and a hundred miles west of Fort Wayne, running down Highway 41 at about 23 miles an hour through one of your thick north-Indiana fogs—thank God it obliterates the view—is a rented Tracer bearing me into...nowhere. The middle of nowhere.</p>
The Colombian soccer players’ mission is not just to win the World Cup but to save their country’s reputation. To do that, they may have to leave behind the very soul of the team, because René Higuita got too friendly with some extremely powerful fans—the cocaine kingpins of Medellín.
<p>THE RIVAL COLOMBIAN drug lords Pablo Escobar and Carlos Molina Yepes had one thing in common besides their enthusiasm for the marketing possibilities of cocaine: a love for the game of soccer. Before he went underground, Escobar was known in Medellín merely as a local politician, a member of parliament who was more at home on the terraces of the city’s stadiums, appraising the talents of players who had grown up in the roughneck neighborhoods nearby.</p>
<p>NO ONE IN SILICON VALLEY had seen anything like it: eight miles of empty pavement on Highway 101 south of San Jose. The four armed men ready to hijack a truck filled with $10 million worth of Intel 486 microprocessors didn’t know what was going on.</p>
THE FIRST BLACK AFRICAN Country I went to was in East Africa. I was in my early thirties. I was loosely connected with the local university, and I lived in a little low bungalow in the landscaped grounds of a government compound on the edge of the town.
<p>WAYNE DROVE DOWN to a bar called Taco Flats run by an agreeable Mexican who would pretend he understood your bad Spanish. Blocking the lot to Taco Flats were cars lined up to do window banking at the bank next door. Wayne wished one of them would just rob the bank and dismiss the line of traffic.</p>
OKAY, NOW HOW NOTEWORTHY is it that on a Saturday night at least half the men in the vast Desert Rose dance hall in Grand Island, Nebraska, are wearing cowboy hats? Not very, right, except show me another type of night-club where anybody is wearing a hat of any kind, let alone one that belongs outside near cow shit.
GEORGIA THOUGHT of Nicole and David as California bohemians and liked being with them, sleeping in the living room while they occupied the bedroom. Nights for them sounded strenuous but in no way—she supposed the word was false. At night their door was always open a crack, and when she thought she heard one of them whisper her name, she ignored it, pretending to be asleep.
Runway quirks, father-son looks, great gifts, Superman at ease
THE RECENT ROUND of men’s fashion shows is over, but the evil that stylists do lives on. For some reason, these backstage fashion virtuosos always feel that men’s wear needs a little something extra, preferably weird, purposeless little touches: a scarf twisted around the head like a babushka, an extra sweater tied around the waist, Alfalfa hair, a ludicrous necktie.
Lois & Clark's Dean Cain hangs loose in this spring’s pajama-inspired sportswear, proving that you don’t have to dress like the Man of Steel in the off-hours to look super.
<p>Some guys just can’t catch a break. Dean Cain was looking at a promising football career. An all-American from that gridiron powerhouse Princeton, he set (and still holds) the NCAA single-season record for interceptions—and somehow found time to date Brooke Shields.</p>
IT’S HARD TO SAY WHICH is the more prominent American tradition—beating up on the rich or sucking up to them. Certainly the famous anecdote that Ernest Hemingway fabricated about an exchange he did not really have with F. Scott Fitzgerald gets right to the heart of our national schizophrenia about wealth.
MADE BY TROLLS IN TROLLHÄTTAN, read the bumper stickers in the 1960s on cars produced in that Swedish city. Saab owners have always been inordinately loyal to what began as the Birkenstock, the Earth Shoe, of cars. Safe and durable, Saabs always had a certain weirdness about them.
Dudes and Dads, page 134: Pratesi robes ($460 each) at Pratesi stores nationwide; Bergdorf Goodman, New York. For information contact: Pratesi, 829 Madison Avenue, New York, New York 10021. On page 135: Calvin Klein tuxedo ($1,150) at I. Magnin, Phoenix; Neiman Marcus, Atlanta.
TRUE FAN GOT THERE EARLY, as he always does, but Spike Lee got there first. True Fan took his seat and looked around for other true fans of the Knicks that he knew. In the wood-paneled rooms of suite 200, upstairs in Madison Square Garden, men who filled out their chairs were eating chili and taking one another’s dimension.