The times, they've been a-changin', especially for Bob Dylan, the person who put that phrase into the language. In this month's interview, conducted by Ron Rosenbaum, we check in with America's musical bard, who gives us a sad-eyed assessment of what he's been up to since his last Playboy Interview, 12 years ago. This go-round, Dylan reveals that his first song was about Brigitte Bardot and that his "friend" Jimmy Carter likes his Ballad of a Thin Man. As a March bonus, we have Ranan R. Lurie's probing interview with Israel's Patton, General Ariel Sharon.
Playboy, March, 1978, Volume 25, Number 3. Published Monthly by Playboy. Playboy Building, 919 North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60611. Subscriptions: In the United States and its possessions, $33 for three years, $25 for two years, $14 for one year, Canada, $15 per year. Elsewhere, $25 per year. Allow 45 days for new subscriptions and renewals. Change of address: Send both old and new addresses to Playboy, Post Office Box 2420, Boulder, Colorado 80302, and allow 45 days for change. Marketing: Ed Condon. Director/Direct Marketing; Michael J Murphy, Circulation Promotion Director. Advertising: Henry W. Marks. Advertising Director: Harold Duchin, National Sales Manager: Mark Evens, Associate Advertising Manager, 747 Third Ave., New York. N.Y. 10017; Chicago, Russ Weller, Associate Advertising Manager. 919 N. Michigan Ave.; Detroit. William F. Moore, Manager, 818 Fisher Bldg.; Los Angeles, Stanley L. Perkins, Manager, 8721 Beverly Blvd.; San Francisco, Robert E. Stephens, Manager, 417 Montgomery St.
In a current advertising campaign, Holiday Inns claims that "the best surprise is no surprise." Still, there must have been a few raised eyebrows when guests got a gander at the message on the marquee of the chain's Denton, Texas, hostelry: Good Suck Room 7.
Chicago, with its formidable reputation as a home for big-name gangsters, has turned up a lot of turkeys lately, judging from the following cases, all pulled from police files. It's comforting to know that our street crooks are at least as inept as the police who are trying to catch them.
The possibly inexorable rise of punk rock continues as the record companies, suspecting the existence of Something New, rush in with contracts and cash. Warner Bros. has apparently staked out CBGB's, the Bowery saloon where New York's punk scene was nurtured. So far, W.B. has released records on its Sire label by four of the groups that grace the Bowery stage, and who knows how many will follow? The latest aggregation is the Ramones, whose Rocket to Russia is a testimonial to the endurance of frat-house humor. Not that it isn't funny. Often it is. Rockaway Beach is a cheerful, pleasantly mindless invitation to sun and sand. It's the sort of tune the Beach Boys might have done if they had grown up in Queens. Teenage Lobotomy and Cretin Hop, as the titles might suggest, are happily goofy ditties, offensive only to the stuffy. The Ramones are reassuring, a sign that those mean, scruffy-looking punks are just the kids next door after all.
Granted, women have been consistently overshadowed by the male hero in American films. And granted, the male hero has been represented onscreen as tough, unemotional and stereotypical in his associations with the opposite sex. Unfortunately, author Joan Mellon, in her tedious study Big Bad Wolves: Masculinity in the American Film (Pantheon), fails to get to the root of the problem, if, indeed, it is one, preferring simply to examine the various mutations of the male hero throughout the history of cinema. And whenever she does manage to come to a conclusion, it's usually something like "The war film also produced a hardened male" or "The male film personality in the Seventies has been created partially in response to what is perceived as the economic threat posed by working women" or "Harpo with his scissors, Groucho with his sharp tongue, could retain their manhood only by thumbing their noses at the world." Unsupported platitudes such as those abound while little is said of the fact that most male matinee idols have been principally idolized by--you guessed it--women; or that films, American films in particular, have always been contrived as escapist because audiences seem to prefer them that way. Instead, Mellon prefers to attribute the male screen image to a conspiracy within a male-dominated film industry, which, though it may be a valid point, is not a particularly profound one.
Already a target for head-hunters from the press as moviedom's pampered multimillion-dollar bonus baby--with a three-picture contract and Welcome Back, Kotler still humming along on TV--23-year-old John Travolta is apt to confound his severest critics in Saturday Night Fever. Travolta's stunning debut as a superstar (after a minor role in Carrie) should give the moguls their money's worth, delight his fan club and persuade everyone else that this kid actually has what it takes to light up the big screen. Fever is no flaming masterpiece, but the movie pushes Travolta into stage center of a Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, hot spot called 2001 Odyssey, where the disco generation hustles. This turf was opened up by Nik Cohn's 1976 New York magazine cover story, "Tribal Rites of the New Saturday Night," which has been adapted by screenwriter Norman Wexler (of Joe and Serpico) as a thin sociological slice of life that leaves plenty of room for Travolta to strut and swagger as a street-tough Italian kid named Tony who gets his ego massage at 2001 every Saturday night. On Saturday, he's a Face. The rest of the week, he's a nondescript 19-year-old salesclerk in a paint-and-hardware store, harassed at home, insecure, uneducated, buried alive in a world where women are either nice girls or cunts. The mugs he hangs out with prefer sex, when they can get it, as a back-seat gang bang. "You make it with some of dese chicks, dey tink you gotta dance with 'em," Tony complains. Under flashing strobes on the dance floor, though, Tony is a prince among punks, and he begins to grow up a bit after he enters a $500 dance contest with Stephanie (danced and acted deftly by newcomer Karen Gorney), a snotty, affected Bay Ridge chick who invents some minor details but is already shifting her dreams of glory to Manhattan, her own apartment, a job with an "agency," where she bumps into people like Joe Namath and Laurence Olivier (who he?--"the one that does those Polaroid commercials"). Director John Badham maintains a fine rhythmic balance of seedy Brooklynese glamor and four-letter repartee offset by music by The Bee Gees, among others, plus Travolta in a sensitive performance that should whet public enthusiasm for his next project--the film version of Broadway's light-footed Fifties musical, Grease.
The label made in Germany used to turn up most often on cuckoo clocks. Now the industrious Bavarians are also exporting skin flicks, usually containing more than one bird--plus an American or two on the prowl for quail. Playgirls of Munich features Roger Caine and Zebedy Colt as a couple of Yanks abroad for a lead-footed lark with some bumptious Fräulein who might make a young man's fancy turn sour on Krauts. Butterflies, Co-starring Harry Reems and Sweden's winsome Maria Forsa (sometimes Maria Lynn), offers Reems as a Munich night-club owner and womanizer, Maria as a charming country mouse who comes to the city and falls in love with him--but walks out when traffic starts backing up in her beau's bedroom. Completed long before Reems's career was stymied by legal hassles in the U. S., this is a class act, written and directed by porn pioneer Joseph W. Sarno. The several luscious Damen collected by Reems in Butterflies are ostensibly--with the exception of Maria, his Svenska flicka--from the same general vicinity as those in Playgirls of Munich, but they might as well be residents of another planet. Reems and Company can pick 'em, and on the sex-film circuit, that gives you a long, long start.
Hollywood Television Theater, a seven-year-old dramatic series produced for PBS by KCET-Los Angeles, is being canceled for lack of funding; but it's going out with a splash. Television Theater's farewell will be highlighted (on February seventh from 8 to 9:30 P.M. Eastern time, but check your local listings) by Actor--an original 90-minute musical about the family life and early career of Hollywood's late, great Oscar winner Paul Muni. As far as we know, it's the first instance of a national TV tryout for a show heading hopefully toward Broadway.
Close Encounter With a Grizzly: Critics have been praising five-year-old Cary Guffey's performance in Steven Spielberg's Close Encounters of the Third Kind, particularly in reference to the child's touching "beatific" expressions when confronting aliens and UFOs. As it turns out, though, Cary's look of bemused wonderment was something of a special effect in itself: Whenever the script called for him to look beatific, director Spielberg had a crew member dress up in a bear suit and jump up and down (offcamera, of course) in front of the five-year-old. Richard Dreyfuss and the others weren't so lucky--they spent most of their time reacting to blank space that was later filled with special-effects footage, filmed in the labs and studios.
Ariel (Arik) Sharon is perhaps the most flamboyant and controversial figure in the Israeli cabinet today. During his service in combat, he, more than anyone else, was responsible for the efficiency and high standards of the Israeli military ground forces. His opinions are studied in military schools all over the world. He brought into politics his sweeping new ideas that united several middle and right-wing parties into the one "Likud" party that was eventually voted into power in Israel on May 17, 1977.
<p>[Q] This may sound weird to you, but I have a major hang-up about the morning after. If I've spent the night with a girl--or, rather, if she's spent the night at my place--I can't wait to see her leave, preferably at the crack of dawn. I'm grumpy in the morning, not the best company, and I like my privacy. I prefer to shower alone, shave without an audience and generally get my head together. My question is this: Are there any subtle ways to ask a date to leave?--B. V., Chicago, Illinois.</p>
Picture the following: You've been sleeping with your lover for several months. One night, while having a grand time rutting about under the covers, everything suddenly clicks. Both of you feel that you've crossed a startling threshold into a region of undiscovered erotic delights. In the afterglow of the ultimate orgasm (yours and hers), you lie there, staring at each other--stunned, glassy-eyed. You begin to talk, in an attempt to discover why this time your sexual superchargers connected. What was the source of the unusually intense sex? Why was it so terrific? Can you get a patent on the process?
<p><em>The following report describes the marijuana laws and enforcement practices in various foreign countries. It was prepared by the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws from information supplied to the State Department by U. S. Embassies </em><em>and was published in greater </em>detail in NORML's newsletter, The Leaflet, which noted that only five years ago, another Government-sponsored survey found nearly every country to have strict marijuana prohibitions. This 1977 survey indicates a world-wide trend toward more lenient pot laws-a direction in which this country is only now starting to move.</p>
It was in March 1966 that Playboy published the first full-length interview with Bob Dylan. In the intervening years, he has talked to journalists only rarely, and, shortly before completing his first feature film, he agreed to talk with us. We asked writerRon Rosenbaum,who grew up listening to Dylan songs, to check in with the elusive artist. His report:
Last summer, Ralph Nader launched a campaign to defend the rights of sports fans. At first, it seemed he may have gone off the deep end: The press rolled out mocking cartoons and the talk shows began featuring Peter Gruenstein, Nader's director of his new group, F.A.N.S. (Fight to Advance the Nation's Sports), who sketched details of the campaign for often incredulous audiences. However, it turns out there is a good deal more to F.A.N.S. than standing up for an all-beef, two-bit hot dog. Billions of tax dollars, for example. To get all the facts, we went straight to the sources, Nader and Gruenstein. Here's the story, sports fans.
Fast and foot-loose ladies in controversial movies are pretty much the norm for Louis Malle, the 44-year-old French master who has been setting off furors about sex since 1958, though he has also scored high points with such serious films as Lacombe, Lucien, which was nominated for an Oscar in 1974. After he launched his career earlier in the Fifties as Jacques Cousteau's co-director on The Silent World, Malle's first cause célèbre in cinema was The Lovers, a landmark erotic film with Jeanne Moreau as a kind of latter-day Lady Chatterley, which provoked loud protests from bluestockings but established some new frontiers for the battle against censorship. As recently as 1971, Malle made waves again with Murmur of the Heart, a brilliant and exhilarating comedy about a wayward, wealthy family so sophisticated that the, mother (played by Lea Massari) sleeps with her teenaged son and has a good laugh about it later, as if incest were just another privilege of the rich. (Malle merely smiles at the apocryphal story that when his mother--the heiress to a sugar fortune before she married Malle's father and begat seven privileged children--first saw the film, she observed with relish that it certainly brought back the good old days.)
That Afternoon, we stood there in the woods near Lake Tahoe, looking down the inrun of a jump that was going to pitch each of us up into the air and then put us down 30 or 40 feet away on our skis or on our heads. I was pretty sure that Wild Bill O'Leary, a professional free-style skier and my coach, was going to land on his feet. He'd made a thousand jumps like this. In fact, he has a big color photo of himself in the upside-down part of a back layout off one of these jumps. You can't see where he took off from or where he's going to land, just his spread-eagled body hanging against the high-altitude blue sky, with the lake, the spectators' heads and everything else in the picture below him. If he had on one of those silver suits instead of the black ski outfit he wears, it could be a NASA photo. For him, the jump we were looking down on wasn't going to be much of a rush. But for me ... well ... for me, it was going to be a quantum leap, so to speak. I've skied since I was a kid, but this lip was three, maybe four times bigger than anything I'd ever ridden up and over. From the top of the run, I couldn't see the landing, because it dropped away too steeply on the other side. All I could see from where (continued on page 114)Jump!(continued from page 108) we stood was the lip and then a lot of space, so it was going to be a leap of faith, too.
Pajamas may be passe, but pajama-type lounge-leisure outfits (we've dubbed them easy clothes) that can be worn for entertaining or just curling up with a good book are the hottest-selling items on the present male fashion scene. Easy clothes reinforce the principle that it's no longer possible to label various types of men's apparel sportswear, businesswear, etc. Crossovers in these categories and functions are everywhere, the current fashion mood being if it feels right, wear it. And feel is part of the appeal of these new easy clothes. Borrowing from active, jogging styles, from soft, terry beach styles and from silk-pajama styles, easy clothes come on relaxed, sensuous and, well, easy. So, quick--put on your easy clothes. Company's coming!
Christina Smith's smile is a little devilish. It says, "Show me," even though she's not from Missouri. She's all woman, but she's also tough. Resilient. Willful. She's a maverick. "I was a terrible kid," she admits with a husky laugh. "I resented all authority figures. I was a tomboy, and a pretty rough one, at that."
An aging colonel, retired from the army of an ex--colonial power, was reminiscing in his club. "It was deuced rough dealing with those local insurrections in the old days, y' know," he drawled. "Why, many's the night I slept with nothing between me and the ground but a thin native girl."
It was a slow, gray chilly night. Drizzly. The big-building downtown of any city feels its glummest in weather like that. Donna and Roberta weren't even going to try checking out another bar. They'd just emerged from the basement of their headquarters, Billy the Adult, where they'd split a spliff with the bartender. Roberta fed some quarters to the jukebox and pressed the buttons for Honky Tonky Woman five times. The bartender made a round of stingers. The girls would nurse them for another half hour, then go home and watch the last movie on the tube, whatever it was. A man walked in. He looked around and strode to a stool near the girls but didn't sit. He wasn't handsome, but at least he wasn't greasy or old or fat or wearing a leisure suit or all of the above. Roberta smiled broadly. "I hope you like the Stones." Donna tried to look vaguely bored--not difficult at the moment--and carefully let out a small yawn and stretch that shifted the contents of her blouse in a motion curiously like a salute. Or, if you were the jade frog pinned directly above the left content, a gentle wave. The man smiled at the frog, then at Donna, "I feel empathy," he offered in an elusive accent. "Glad to hear it. My name's Donna." (continued on page 236) Courtesy (continued from page 130)
When D. Keith Mano handed in Tom Swift Is Alive and Well and Making Dildos, we decided it was time for an official investigation of sex aids. Dildos. Vibrators. Inflatable Dolls with Three Operating Orifices. Clitoral Stimulators. Being of the opinion that the best sex aid is a woman, we had never really gotten acquainted with erotic technology, let alone tried one. We wanted to know: Do they work? Are they worth buying? Would you take one home to your mother?
Get Rich in Your Spare Time While Doing Absolutely Nothing (Almost)
All you who chase with panting eagerness the ghosts of your hopes, who expect that age will perform the promises of youth and that the difficulties of today will be salved by a brighter tomorrow, attend to my tale of the pursuit of wealth far beyond the wildest dreams of something as trivial as mere avarice.
It's almost a cliché that we American males are in love with our automobiles. They have come to be extensions of ourselves, or at least of what we aspire to be. They have carved a long-lasting niche in our psyches, so perhaps it was inevitable that they should have made their marks on our libidos as well. It was apparent from the start that more than anything else, they were bedrooms on wheels, conjugal coupes, seduction sedans--with everything, to go. Of course, they have varied wildly in size and style over the years. In recent memory, they were great rolling behemoths, acres of sheet metal broken only by the occasional gaudy flash of chrome. Victims of the energy crunch, those imposing vehicles turned out to be dinosaurs in a jet age. Like the ancient reptiles, in the end, they were just too big and too dumb. Reluctantly, we agreed to their passing, but across the land a cry went up: "Can you do it in a small car?" We found reassurance in our progenitors of the Twenties and Thirties, who certainly did, and in the Europeans, who have never been fazed by their machines' diminutive dimensions.
Gunnin' and fishin' and the relative merits of bird dogs occupied quite a space in the conversation of my grandfather and uncles; when these lies and arguments palled, talk sometimes turned to just who made the all-fired best damn smoked turkey in the county. Although nowadays a lot of sportsmen just head for their freezer lockers, there are signs that the venerable art of smoke cooking is making a reentry into American life.
Smart singles will tell you that there is a certain civilized pleasure to be found in the simple art of solo dining. Moreover, half bottles afford the lone diner an exciting and convenient chance to experiment with new and interesting wines. As in everything, the key to running a good restaurant--albeit for one--is organization.
In the ornate bars of pre-Civil War New York, "cocktails" were originally ordered as gulp and shudder eye-openers at the start of a busy day. At the Hoffman House, Professor Jerry Thomas, the most respected barman of that era, claimed that the success of a "Manhattan" rested entirely on the quality of the aromatic bitters used. Today, however, according to space age Windows on the World's Dick Block, "many people don't like bitters, even though they're good at cutting the sharpness of a drink, at smoothing it out. So for a Manhattan we add the traditional two dashes of Angostura only on request." Also missing in today's streamlined version of the old classic, we are glad to report, is the once prerequisite maraschino cherry, lethally red as Snow White's poisoned apple. The two '70s-sleek cocktails posing here atop the restaurant's piano. 107 stories high in the blue Manhattan heavens, were made following a formula typical of Windows on the World's "less-is-more" contemporary school of barmanship.
A slight meal, this one (cupcakes and wine) but one of consequence--since it caused, or rather helped cause, the death of the most feared man in Russia. The victim was the "gigantic monk," Gregory Elimovitch Rasputin, a quack whose supposed supernatural powers had gained him control over the Czarina Alexandra and the Czarist household. The Czarina could not resist him. In her dispatches to the Czar she always referred to him as "Our Friend," and she had such an exalted opinion of his wisdom that she tried to convince her husband to run Rasputin's comb through his hair before seeing his ministers of state.
Sam Aaron,co-author of The Joy of Wine: Amazing things have been happening in the Napa and Sonoma Valleys and this excellence has extended southward. The gap is closing between American and French wines. If we peg Chateau Lafitte-Rothschild or Chateau Latour at 100 on a quality index, I would say that, relatively speaking, the better Cabernet Sauvignons of California have now achieved 90. And we're getting closer to 100 with each passing year. The same is true of our better Chardonnays as compared to Montrachets.
If you've got soul, you'll get Haiti. No Anglo-isle polite pastels here. Pungent, potent, a land of seething streetlife, cockfights, dancing, bonfires, birthday cake graveyards and hyperactive voodoo gods. A land to pole-axe the senses. Haitian Visions: Fire! fire! colors hot as five alarm flames. Girls toting baskets on scarf wrapped heads, flamingo, sunflower, go-light green, their sketchy dresses a soda pop clash of cherry, grape and lemonlime. "Tap-taps," mini-buses painted from stem to stern with anecdotal religious and native scenes, sailing through human traffic like Sunday comics in the sultry winds. Each tap-tap is emblazoned with a name: "Thanks, Mother Dear," "O.K. Zaza," "All Is Mystery," "Let Me Live." Molten hedgerows of tangled poinsettias, bright laundry lines of mass-produced naive art. Parrot green mountains, sunset seas, floodlit swimming pool skies. Haitian Sounds: Languorous whir of ceiling fans, the slap and clatter of gambling under farmyard trees, on top of tombstones, in the rhinestone cowboy casino. Incessant high-blood pressure voodoo drumming, radio blasts of Cuban merengues, a muzak ooze of sweetened Chopin and tango soup. Raucously welcoming twenty-four hour dawns. Haitian roosters, like Haitian divorce lawyers, seem never to sleep. Haitian Aromas: Seductive gusts of vetiver from the perfume factory, fragrant herbal teas, sea salt, acrid I market vapors, the penetrating signature smell of the country...charcoal and wood smoke from constantly flickering cooking fires. Haitian Flavors: At expensive tables, tropics-tinged interpretations of classic haute cuisine. In traditional Haitian haunts, the world's best deep fried fritters, at once mellifluous and crunchy, fishnet-fresh seafood, expert grilling, savory black mushroom-stained rice and acetylene sauce ti malice. As far as gloriously fresh food is concerned, Haiti is an earthly paradise. In the country markets, more than thirty kinds of glowing vegetables and herbs may be quickly counted; purple-mirrored eggplant, frail stalked watercress, melting avocados and the hi-fi volume dials of Creole cuisine...peppers, red, yellow, green, sweet to hot, hotter, hottest. Haitian fruit is dangerously addictive. Even varieties familiar to foreigners tend to startle: powerhouse grapefruit, green skinned, explosively tangy and sweet; elusively faint blue raspberries, like ghosts of their black and red cousins. For the novitiate, Carmen Miranda extravaganzas of muskily perfumed tropical fruits are worth the trip alone.The selling, display and sharing of food amounts to a national obsession. And almost any common occurrence can trigger an improvised party meal. A ruptured banana truck stalls on a coastal highway. The drivers, an amazing number of them, Haiti (con'd.)tumble out to commiserate with their stricken overload. Within minutes, they have started a blaze in a nearby ditch and sprawl beneath the truck's dangling innards, peeling plantains to boil with salt or sugar for a chatty communal lunch followed by a spread-eagle siesta. After dark, the poorer streets of Port-au-Prince metamorphose into funky fairgrounds. On low makeshift candlelit tables, amateur shopkeepers and primitive restaurateurs arrange their sparse displays. Frequently the barter system prevails; a hungry stroller may trade, for example, a single juicy mango for a few crisp nuggets of deep fried fish or pork. Aside from excellent Haitian beer and coffee, coconut milk and the sticky nameless floral colored syrups and spirits purveyed in the streets from ramshackle trundle bars, rum is the universal drink. Your average voodoo altar is laden with bottles. The gods, one is told, love rum. And with good reason if it's of a reputable local brand. Elaborate rum drinks are the stock in trade at all tourist lures, whether restaurant, nightclub, bar or hotel.
In the eyes of most shoppers, all canned tuna was born equal. To put this egalitarian notion to the test. The International Review of Food and Wine invited four notably sensitive and educated palates to pass judgment on four widely distributed brands. Their conclusions make it clear that one should choose tuna by its commercial label rather than price tag.
Just where is this van of yours, wanda ...? I don't like this spooky neighborhoodSee what I mean? A man exposing himself! Now what'll we doHow'd ya l.ly=?4 shil-y my zyhz-A little Psychology a little reason is all
If you're still awed by the fact that some calculators aren't any bigger than a box of matches, wait until you see what the latest crop of portable Einsteins can do. There now are models that weigh only one and one fourth ounces, function on solar power, act as a stop watch and even have a recorder/player built in that takes miniature cassettes. And they don't cost a bundle, either.
When Diogenes was asked which wine he liked best, the old philosopher sagely answered, "Somebody else's." We'll drink to that. But there does come a time when even flaky grape nuts long for a stash of vino to call their own. Wine, however, is a living thing and storage conditions can affect its quality. You could just leave your bottles in their cases, but we think it's more fun to show off a collection by housing it in a wine rack. (Aside from holding the bottles stable, a rack also keeps the corks wet.) Here's how to ensure that your chosen grapes will live up to expectations.
We've little doubt that the pen is mightier than the sword --especially when the ballpoint, fountain or felt tip you're gripping has something going for it other than just the ability to leave your mark on a piece of paper. A well-crafted pen is like a piece of fine jewelry--it's great to look at, it's a pleasure to hold and it's a real ego booster. What big shot doesn't have a favorite pen to make his John Hancock with? Sign up.