Although our choice for Sexiest Woman Alive sparked a flurry of response in the days after the November issue hit the newsstands, it was the first of two features on intelligent design, “Greetings from Idiot America,” by Charles P. Pierce, that provoked the greatest number of letters.
What do you know about what they’ve learned? Perhaps not as much as you’d think. Match the What I’ve Learned interview outtake with one of the thirteen people featured in this year’s Meaning of Life issue. (Most impressive correct answer: Alyssa Milano.)
T0his woman walks into a bar, and she has the hairiest armpits in the history of armpits. She sits down, raises her arm, and says,"Bartender, I would like a drink.” There's an old drunk sitting next to her. Slurring, he says, "Barkeep, I would like to buy the ballerina a drink."
MICHAEL HANEKE, DIRECTOR OF CACHÉ (HIDDEN), KNOWS HOW TO FREAK US OUT
MICHAEL HANEKE’S Caché (Hidden), a new thriller from France, opens with an image so apparently benign that several minutes elapse before you realize that you’re already a witness to a subtle campaign of terror. The opening credits are superimposed over a placid, across-the-street view of the stately home belonging to the film’s protagonists, married couple Georges (Daniel Auteuil) and Anne (Juliette Binoche).
UNLESS YOU’RE a big fan of British television, you’re probably no more familiar with actor Steve Coogan than you are with 18th-century canonical literature. Until now, at least. This month Coogan stars in the new movie Tristram Shandy:
"I CAN TELL YOU that in the next ten years, people are going to start to get bored seeing the same old animated film." So predicts French animator and director Sylvain Chomet, whose visually stunning and dialogueless The Triplets of Belleville (2003) reinvigorated an industry stuck in a mire of Pixar-induced retreads.
AND SO ARE THE OTHER 2,212 ASPIRING MUSICIANS WHO GAVE MY ORPHANED LYRICS A HOME
WHEN I OFFERED UP some lyrics in this magazine a few months ago, I knew that for every submission Esquire would receive, there would be a story. Sure enough, when the entries started flowing in, they all sounded unique, yet they all shared a common inspiration.
ESQ: When John Mayer called you, you told him you were going to soil yourself. TF: My head is still kind of spinning. I was sitting in my car on a lunch break eating Chinese takeout. I answered with a mouthful of rice and it’s John Mayer on the phone.
1 The Frank Zappa Award Keith Rubin (Fort Lauderdale) Imagine Hedwig and the Angry Inch set around an Oompa-Loompa choir, with some overt ass kissing. ("Esquire magazine. Now, that’s a tremendous read.”) 2 Best Dorm-Room Duo Brandon Paddock/Greg Perrine (Chicago) With an '80s-ish slab of synth pop, these Columbia College freshmen remind us there's more to dorm life than meddling RAs and closet hydroponics.
ADAM CAROLLA has a talk show on Comedy Central and a home-improvement show on TLC, and, beginning January 3, the former carpenter turned boxing instructor turned Loveline radio host takes over Howard Stern’s prime time slot (and, he hopes, audience) in West Coast markets.
Marian Salzman can see the future. And her skills are harnessed for something very important: selling you stuff. As a VP at mega ad agency JWT, Salzman identifies trends and helps clients channel buzz. She's coauthored numerous books and helped popularize the terms wigger and metrosexual.
TAKE A FUN-LOVING director of comedies and fill him with subconscious narcissistic rage. Know what you get? Sciatica—pervasive, debilitating, all-encompassing back pain. Barring coming to terms with the fact that my mother had me paged at a rock concert at Madison Square Garden when I was 17 (my shrink tells me the pain is all psychological), there seems to be absolutely no cure.
RULE NO. 274: Sharing your ChapStick with a beautiful woman is not the same as making out with her. But it's pretty damn close. RULE NO. 380: In our hearts, Al Roker is still chubby. RULE NO. 391: Goji berry is the funniest berry. RULE NO. 511: The Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever is the most precisely named dog breed. RULE NO. 679: Use the term blogosphere as little as possible.
When I go down on my girlfriend, I often have to stop because she becomes cold. When I kiss her on the lips, they actually feel cold, as if she had just been sipping a cold beverage. Is this common? Is it ever! In fact, a woman’s body can get so cold, so quickly, that her partner has to stop completely, get himself together, and hightail it out of the morgue.
AS WE ALL KNOW, healthy eating is all about moderation. That is why, when I’m enjoying deep-fried bacon, I limit myself strictly to two slices. Per meal. No exceptions. That’s right, bacon tempura: the impossible goodness of pork belly made even more impossibly good with a delicate breading and a bath in sizzling-hot canola.
Not a week goes by that we don't say a prayer of thanks for the various dukes, barons, princes, and so forth who used to more or less run things for us. No, we’re not monarchists; that would be silly. Rather, we regard the nobles as a jeweler does an oyster: as an unusually stupid sort of animal that sometimes generates a precious commodity.
My eyebrows are growing like kudzu. Ear and nose hair, too.
Rodney’s wisdom: A lot of people think that eyebrows are something you can take care of at home, but I disagree. They’re too easy to overdo, and you can end up looking worse than when you started. If you refuse to spend a couple bucks getting waxed or plucked by a pro, at least heed the advice of one.
MY FIRST Chicago apartment was old, dark, and no roomier than a large camping tent. Devoid of a dishwasher, its only worthwhile amenity was a toilet of the 3,5-gallon "institutional" variety. Loud and voracious, the tankless beast was powered by a flushometer, a regulating valve that employs direct water pressure to spawn a high-speed, wasteeliminating maelstrom in the bowl.
RULE NO. 352: One statement your clothes shouldn't make about you: "There’s a good chance the guy in these clothes is wearing Axe body spray." RULE NO. 401: Regardless of the vibe you think you’re getting from your dentist, you should never lick her finger. RULE NO. 477: Describing the location of a cut of meat on an animal by pointing to the equivalent muscle on your own body is totally unappetizing.
A PSYCHEDELIC-MUSHROOM TRIP cured Paul Stamets of stuttering when he was 16. More than 30 years of obsessive fungi foraging later, the 50-year-old mycologist is convinced that mushrooms can save the planet—not to mention your body. As kooky as it sounds, people have begun listening, and not just those waiting for a miracle outside Red Rocks.
The better the booze, the lesser the hang-over—or so I'm told. Is this true? YES. The alcohol gets you drunk, but it's the impurities in the spirit that give you a hangover. And the cheaper the hooch, the greater the percentage of substances like methanol, acetone, and tyramine.
Dangerous Knowledge: the Unhealthy Guide to the Healthy Guide to Unhealthy Living
OKAY, I WAS STOKED to review this one. At last, I thought, a book that will teach me to play both ends against the middle, a step-by-step guide to cutting your nose off to spite your face. And when I saw the subtitle—How to Survive Your Bad Habits-I actually took a little look around to see if someone was putting me on.
ESQUIRE'S ANSWER FELLA believes that there are no stupid questions, just stupid people who don’t ask questions, fearing they'll look' stupid. So ask Answer Fella anything. If he doesn't know the answer, he'll find out who does or who has a guess that sounds right.
The Not-so-shameless Obsession of the Month: the Perfect Fit
It is the ultimate difference-maker, more undeniably capable of transforming you into something larger than yourself than a fleeting run at the black-jack table or an afternoon behind the wheel of a borrowed 911. Oh, you own that 911? Fine, but do you own a perfectly fitting suit?
Because it's about more than just your waist and inseam. Here's what you need to know.
The Lapel The ideal suit has the lapel notch relatively high up toward the shoulder, since when folded closed (as jackets once were to keep out the cold), the lapels should meet, with the notch right under your Adam's apple. Three-button wool suit ($949) by Luigi Bianchi Mantova; cotton shirt ($225) by Canali; silk tie ($99) by Charles Tyrwhitt.
Suit Rule No. 19: Your suit size? The one you're buying,minustwo. Suit Rule No. 20: Suits aren't something you grow into. Suit Rule No. 121: No one knows what type of man looks good in a double-breasted suit. This should tell you something.
Are you a Drop Six? If you are, you’re a suit maker’s dream: Your chest is six inches larger than your waist. You can wear anything. Sadly, most of us don’t live inside those ideal tailoring measurements. Instead, in pursuit of comfort most red-blooded American men leave the department store with a suit that’s a size too big, or just plain not right for then body type.
Suit Rule No. 11: The injustice in the new NBA dress code is that it did not ban five-button suits. Suit Rule No. 53: Quality over quantity. Every time. Suit Rule No. 57: Unbuttoning your sleeve only proves you're a show-off.
An impassioned plea for professional jurors, from a man who just spent a long time as an amateur
So I'm sitting here, and I'm thinking about growing a beard. I'm thinking about how terrible my fantasy football team is, and how Randy Moss is more unstoppable in theory than he is in practice. I'm thinking about a conspiracy theory I just uncovered about John Lennon's 1980 assassination that suggests the murder was actually financed by Paul McCartney, and I'm thinking about how much of this hypothesis focuses on the fact that Mark David Chapman was secretly obsessed with Todd Rundgren.
1. Even if it's cheap jewelry from the drugstore, we’ll get all girlie and adore you for it (Take the price tag and label off, fellas.) 2. When you order before us, the waiter secretively throws us a disgusted glance urging us to break up with you.
I’M STANDING with my back to the shower. The water’s warm, and it’s hitting my head. I’m not wearing my glasses, so I can’t see anything. It’s all a haze. I lose focus and go inward. This radio show starts playing in my head and I go, Oh, my God, this is really funny, and I have to rush out and get it on paper.
<p>Hey, Penny! Forty-three years, Penny’s been in my office. She’s something else. She doesn’t let me get away with anything. Penny, bring me an orange soda, honey. You haven’t done a goddamn thing all day. </p>
<p>An honest answer is that I was more knocked on my ass when I was younger. Because when I lost the race for Congress in 1972, everything was new, raw, and fresh. That experience taught me how to pick up the pieces and go on. It taught me that there are much more important things than running in a race and not winning. Your family. Your values. The things you choose to fight for. I left the race for the presidency with my integrity—and that’s very important.</p>
Italian men age very well. That’s what I’ve learned from Tony Danza. At the time I did Embrace of the Vampire, I was going through a transition from child star to adult actor. I was on Who’s the Boss? from age eleven to nineteen. After the show was over, I was trying to figure out what I was going to do with my life.
<p><strong>A best moment</strong> in music? Sometimes when I’m playing my guitar, I get to a point where it gets very cold and icy inside me. It’s very refreshing. Every breath is like you’re at the North Pole. Your head starts to freeze. Your inhalations are big—more air than you ever thought there is starts pouring in. There’s something magical about it. Sometimes when it happens, you wonder if you’re gonna be okay. Can you handle it?</p>
<p>The collaboration between Brian Grazer and Ron Howard began in 1982 with Night Shift, a comedy about two very different men (played by Henry Winkler and Michael Keaton) who turn a morgue into a whorehouse. Thirteen films (including Oscar winner A Beautiful Mind) and twenty-three years later, their partnership has grossed more than $1 billion at the box office.</p>
Our second-annual collection of wit, wonder, and wild foolishness from our readers’ lives
If a woman asks you how many sexual partners you’ve had, the only answer is twelve.—Mark Motroni,39, Manhasset, New York A child's laughter is the greatest sound in the world. A child’s laughter in a cornfield is the creepiest sound in the world.
I love anybody funny—even people who are bastards, who are evil people, the meanest people you can imagine, even if they treat me horrifically or they treat people like shit—just because they’re funny. Being funny is a jewel in the crown of life.
Esquire magazine is coming to Ray Nagin for some wisdom? Am I getting Punk’d? My press secretary must be settin’ me up. Where’s the hidden camera? Yeah, my shoe-shine guy, that’s how I came to be sitting here. But it’s a little more complicated than one shoe shine.
<p>People have asked me about those years, and I’ve said, “They were very difficult.” And they’ve followed with, “Yeah, but now you’re really famous!” As if that balanced the scale. Nine years of your life/really famous. Fine. It’s like the pound of flesh.</p>
<p>How many people on this planet are van Goghs? Imagine an abstract painter who’s fucking nuts, who cuts off his ear, who lives with potato eaters when he could live better. Sells one painting his whole life. Imagine finding a nut like him in the Bronx. Wouldn’t be hard.</p>
Whether as a moody glam rocker in 1998's Velvet Goldmine, a rugged soccer coach in 2002's Bend It Like Beckham, or as the King himself in 2005's CBS miniseries Elvis, twentyeight-year-old Irish actor Jonathan Rhys Meyers has angled his brooding visage and stormy screen presence into one of the most promising careers of the past decade.
Ziyi Zhang (or Zhang Ziyi, as she's known in China) has just checked herself into a Beijing hospital. She is suffering from a mysterious respiratory ailment that she developed on the set of the Chinese film The Banquet. We feel for hei But for the doctors on duty the shift just got a lot more interesting.
He escaped New Orleans with nothing but a T-shirt and a pair of jeans, and for a while he lived in the Houston Astrodome, Row J, fourth bunk from the end. He woke up exhausted every morning, unable to find comfort on the Red Cross cots that seized up his crooked back, or relief from the boom boxes of droopy-jeaned teenagers who blasted their crunk at 6:00 A.M.
Store Information For availability of the items featured in Esquire, consult the Web site or call the phone number provided. The Guide, p. 59: Ralph Lauren Black Label suit, shirt, tie, and pocket square, polo.com; 888-4757674. Brooks Brothers shoes, brooksbrothers.com.
Here are the solutions to "The Hardest Quiz Ever,” published in the December issue. The quiz is available at esquire.com. 1. Anne Rice 2. Sight, heaRing, sMell, Taste, touCh 3. Mind your business 4. Hop on Pop 5. 60 6. Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass 7. Monty Python or Terry Gilliam (The foot in the lower-left corner is the foot commonly associated with Monty Python’s Flying Circus.)
To me, it’s the same whether I’m doing a species or a continent or a pestilence. It’s about being open to doing new things—stretching my wings. Space. Now, that’s a space. At this point, I can only legally say that I am in talks with Target about some kind of a collaboration.