According to the Reagan Administration, Central America is menaced by a creeping tide of communism that threatens to spread all the way to Mexico. In citing what he sees as a dangerous trend, President Reagan often singles out Nicaragua, where, in the summer of 1979, the revolutionary Sandinista front seized power from dictator Anastasio Somoza, whose family had ruled the country for 42 years. Is the Sandinista leadership really as hostile to the U. S. as some Government officials say it is? We sent Claudia Dreifus to Nicaragua to pose pointed questions to three members of the Nicaraguan junta (and, in a separate session, to Sandinista chief ComandanteDaniel Ortega Saavedra). Her Playboy Interview with Sandinista cofounder Tomás Borge Martínez, Minister of Culture Father Ernesto Cardenal, a Roman Catholic priest, and novelist turned revolutionary Sergio Ramírez Mercado will, we think, be one of our most controversial ever. Says Dreifus, "The national directorate of Nicaragua voted to give me the interview. In addition to our tape session at Nicaragua's Government House, interviews also took place at Ramírez' home on the island of Solentiname, where Father Cardenal has his Christian community; in a garrison on the Costa Rican border; and in a truck taking Comandante Borge to a prison farm for Mosquito Indians involved in counterrevolutionary activities." Dreifus asked these gentlemen some very serious questions, as you'll read.
Playboy, (ISSN 0032-1478), September, 1983, Volume 30, Number 9. Published monthly by Playboy, Playboy Bldg., 919 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL. 60611. Subscriptions: In the United States and its possessions, $54 for 36 issues, $38 for 24 issues. $22 for 12 issues. Canada, $27 for 12 issues. Elsewhere, $35 for 12 issues. 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; Michael Druckman, New York Sales Manager; Milt Kaplan, Fashion Advertising Manager, 747 Third Avenue, New York, New York 10017; Chicago 60611, Russ Weller, Associate Advertising Manager, 919 North Michigan Avenue; Troy, Michigan 48084, Jess Ballew, Manager, 3001 W. Big Beaver Road; Los Angeles 90010, Stanley L. Perkins, Manager, 4311 Wilshire Boulevard; San Francisco 94104, Tom Jones, Manager, 417 Montgomery Street.
Taste is our inner gyroscope, which tells us how to act: Should we hold back or let go? The trouble is, too many of our tastes are shaped by what we think others will think of us. Should we behave like Oscar Wilde or like Wallace Beery? Should we cock our finger while drinking tea or finger our cock? It's not easy. What would it be like if that inner gyroscope gave way? Venture, as I did, on a day when taste had taken a holiday.
Michael Mewshaw set out to expose corruption in pro tennis. Pro tennis wouldn't cooperate. Mewshaw's Short Circuit (Atheneum) misfires when it comes to getting the real inside dope about men's tennis, because the author never got within shouting distance of the top players. About the best his book can offer is a long interview with John McEnroe's father--who will, reportedly, talk to anybody.
Trumpeter Lester Bowie is a past member of the Art Ensemble of Chicago who has always subscribed to that band's credo: Keep one eye on the past, no matter how vigorously you explore new territories. On his remarkable new double album, All the Magic! (ECM), Bowie again looks both ways. On disc one, he pays homage to traditional New Orleans jazz in the company of a percolating five-piece ensemble and two vocalists. On disc two, subtitled "The One and Only," Bowie gives us a look at his intimate relationship with his horn. This group of solos is sometimes sweet, sometimes grating and sometimes mere noodling. But both of these discs are, in the end, a blast. Bowie emerges an imaginative player and composer and a pretty funny guy for an avant-gardist.
In the Hot column, we bring you a list of trusted audio companions. Indeed, it's nearly redundant to list them at all. On the other side of the ledger, however, if we've told you once, we've told you a thousand times....
High-Tech Juggler: Chris Bliss is a juggler but not like any juggler you've ever seen. He tosses tennis balls and mirror balls and scarves, like other jugglers, but he does it to music. That may not sound like much on the face of it, but when Bliss gets going to the Beatles or Jean-Luc Ponty or The Who, whatever he's throwing takes on the life of the music--and, finally, the dance of light that jumps and flies out of his hands resembles nothing so much as good fireworks.
He has a successful new production company now, Broadway Video, with two floors of elegant art-deco offices on 49th Street and Broadway. Even so, the past is never far away. From his window, Lorne Michaels has an oblique view of 30 Rock, headquarters of NBC. It was there, for a few electric moments, that he presided over the hottest TV phenomenon of the Seventies: Saturday Night Live.
All's well with Octopussy (MGM/UA), the first of two James Bond epics on tap for 1983. But while we're waiting for Sean Connery's comeback as 007 in Never Say Never Again, a well-seasoned Roger Moore and Octopussy continue the grand tradition of Ian Fleming on film in a rush of nonstop action, wit and innuendo. The Bond formula is sure-fire, virtually beyond criticism (and I'm not about to join that band of petty-minded pundits who feel compelled to take potshots at any movie that becomes a megahit). With George MacDonald Fraser heading a trio of authors, the screenplay directed by John Glen (and adapted from a couple of Fleming stories published in playboy way back when) clicks right along from the classic crowd-pleasing pretitle sequence to a breath-taking aerial finale. Elegant Maud Adams (paired with Moore in The Man with the Golden Gun nearly a decade ago) warms up the title role as an international jewel smuggler and enterpreneuse with a sumptuous lair in India. The mischief afoot concerns a priceless Fabergé egg and nuclear chess with Soviet agents. There's less high-tech gimmickry than usual and lots of pretty people (Louis Jourdan, Kristina Wayborn and Octopussies galore) around to get in Roger's way. But true Bondophiles need not dwell on such details. Just sit back and let things happen.
Idol Gossip:Woody Allen returns to broad comedy with Broadway Danny Rose, described by one insider as "the story of a down-at-the-heels agent." Woody's reallife leading lady, Mia Farrow, co-stars. An early-1984 release is set.... James Garner and Shirley Jones star in Universal's Tank, about a soon-to-retire Army officer who uses a Sherman tank to rescue his falsely arrested teenaged son from prison.... Sherry Lansing's first project since leaving the presidency of 20th Century-Fox is Racing with the Moon, a Forties love story starring Sean(Bad Boys)Penn and Elizabeth McGovern. Richard Benjamin will direct.... Robert Redford, who hasn't starred in a film in ages, will play the lead in The Natural, based on Bernard Malamud's 1952 novel about a gifted baseball player whose innate abilities are subverted by corrupt moneymen and destructive women. Director will be Barry(Diner)Levinson.... John Schlesinger will direct Tim Hutton and Sean Penn in Orion's film adaptation of Robert Lindsey's true story, The Falcon and the Snowman, the tale of two disaffected young Americans who become entangled with the Russians.... Rick Springfield makes his motion-picture debut in Hard to Hold, a contemporary love story about a famous rock star who happens to fall in love with the one woman who is not a fan.... NBC-TV has set a seven-hour miniseries, Kennedy, to air on the 20th anniversary of J.F.K.'s assassination, in November. Martin Sheen, John (Missing) Shea, E. G. Marshall, Geraldine Fitzgerald and Blair Brown star.... Word has it that Steven Spielberg, producer David Geffen and director Martin Scorsese are talking about doing a 3-D film version of the stage musical Little Shop of Horrors.
One evening last spring, I arrived home to find a concerned younger son. "I got called down to the lobby this afternoon," he said. "There was a man there. He showed me his I.D. and gave me this paper to give to you. He didn't say much. What's going on, Dad?"
Scientific polls have shown that nobody knows how to date anymore. We used to. In the Fifties, the man took the woman to dinner and the movies and kissed her good night. In the Sixties, the man invited the woman to smoke some dynamite shit and spent the night with her. In the Seventies, the woman took the man to a consciousness-awareness seminar and promised to call him the following week.
Some men have trouble with premature ejaculation. I have the opposite problem: My partner feels she doesn't turn me on enough. She has multiple orgasms, due to my ability to remain strong and firm, but if I don't reach a climax, then we feel we've missed something. I can have an orgasm during oral sex, but that is because there is much more direct stimulation. We have considered consulting some of those kinky sex manuals, but we both feel that that would be a last resort and could possibly further damage our emotional relationship by putting more emphasis on sex than is necessary. She doesn't know I am writing to you, but if you can give me some good advice on how to remedy this situation, I will come clean with her, because our relationship has always been based on trust and honesty. I would appreciate your professional comments.--T. T., Boston, Massachusetts.
Look at this month's question and answers from a Playmate's point of view: She meets a new guy and is interested. Not only is he slightly intimidated by her smashing good looks but she personifies the Playboy mystique. It's up to her to make him feel relaxed and not be put off.
Americans disagree about many things. But two things we all want very much are individual liberty and freedom and safety in our homes and in public. Those goals are not as impossible to achieve as many people think. Here is one giant step we could take toward both of them:
In April of this year, the President of the United States called an extraordinary Joint Session of Congress to get support for his Central American economic-and-military-aid program, to talk about progress toward democracy that the government of El Salvador had been making--and to denounce the left-wing Sandinista government of Nicaragua. Among President Reagan's charges against the Nicaraguans: They were Marxists; they were becoming a Cuban and/or a Soviet military base; they were encouraging revolution throughout Central America; they were undemocratic; they hadn't held elections yet; they had been rude to the Pope. In light of all that, Reagan announced, "We should not--and we will not--protect the Nicaraguan government from the anger of its own people."
[Q] Playboy: Perhaps it shouldn't surprise us that you--Nicaragua's head of state--are also a poet, since many of the top Sandinista leaders are poets as well. Is that some kind of credential for a political post in Nicaragua?
The football team at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology played eight New England Collegiate Conference games last year and lost five of them. Worcester State beat them 42 to three. Bentley College beat them 46 to naught. But if there was a moment when the English majors and the econ majors and the prelaw majors in the stands got all puffed up because their team was pushing the nerds around on the gridiron, it must have taken the fun out of it when they heard the yell that comes from the MIT side on such occasions. It's the kind of yell that must haunt the arts majors later on, when they're out on their first job interviews or when they read the papers and see everybody from Ronald Reagan to Jerry Brown slobbering over the new technology and its young wizards. It's a cruel yell. It goes, "M-I-T...P-h.-D.... M-O-N-E-Y."
A few months ago, poster woman Dorit Stevens dropped in to the Postermat in Westwood to see whether or not her posters were selling. She was wearing a jogging suit, sneakers, no make-up, and her hair was all wet. She overhead two kids bickering over one of her posters. They didn't have enough money for it.
I'm not just rappin' off at the mouth, I know what I'm talkin' about, I can quote Dante, John Donne, Socrates, Euripides and Aristophanes, I'm not just one of those brothers that only know about boxin' and football, I know what's happenin' in the Middle East, I know all about Omar Qaddafi, I know all about the AWACs missiles and all that, I know about the nuclear bombs and all this protestin', I know about the I.O.U.s, money runnin' out and stocks and bonds, most fellows are one-dimensional, me I am not a conversation dropout."--MR. T
Last christmas, I got a card from my old friend Armand Daniel that shocked me considerably. The card was one of those photo things that have such currency in the suburbs, and it showed a happy family grouped in front of a fireplace: Two little boys with miniature Armand faces were smiling for all they were worth, probably in anticipation of the spoils of the season, and their mother was resting her head on Armand's shoulder. That was what shocked me. Years ago, when Armands and I had been close, I'd seen hundreds of similar heads on his shoulder, and it had never occurred to me, once I'd lost touch with him, that he would fall victim to monogamy. He had such miraculous rapport with women, such a gift for getting laid, that it was difficult for me to imagine him entangled in ordinary domestic life. I thought he would still be out in the world somewhere, carrying on as he'd done in the past.
<p>Barbara Edwards has blossomed. There were those who thought it would never happen. And if it ever did, not quite so...gloriously. She was, after all, a bit of a cutup early on, her mind never quite focusing on the subject at hand; instead, wandering, dreaming.</p>
I have went through some changes in life. Vietnam put me in the hospital, but the American League pennant race almost park me six foot under. My road roomy, Kid, say, "Roland, why you don't just forget the man, play out your option and sell your ass first week of November?"
You don't have to have an advanced degree in cinematography to attach a video camera to a video cassette recorder (VCR) and make like Cecil B. De Mille. But after several sessions of lights, cameras and plenty of action (we won't ask what kind), you may be tempted to shelve your beret and megaphone and leave the directing to Steven Spielberg. Think again, C.B. The current crop of video cameras and VCRs goes a long way to close the gap between Hollywood and home town. You can now equip yourself with a video camera that can capture the image of a speeding object, such as a race car, on tape instead of just reproducing a blur, or one that operates in low-light situations slicker than Errol Flynn ever did. Cassette recorders have also become leaner and trimmer, some weighing as little as five pounds. They lightest models, in fact, call for a mini video tape that snaps into an adapter for playback on your tabletop receiver. And color processors and eiditing equipment designed for the home market have finally become available so that you can now assemble your miscellaneous tapes into a major video opus. To further put you in the director's chair, we've taken ten ordinary home-video problems and have examined them in light of the (continued on page 176)Home Video(continued from page 115) latest equipment on the market. And while your early efforts may not gross $6,000,000 at the box office during the first three days, be comforted by the fact that you're starting your career a step ahead of where most big-time directors started theirs.
Although many critics and musicians believe that Randy Newman is the ranking satirist and the major talent among living American songwriters, he has received most attention for his score for Milos Forman's "Ragtime," which earned an Academy Award nomination, and for a funny song about a lunatic who hales "Short People." "Trouble in Paradise," Newman's most recent LP, includes "I Love L.A.," a bouncy send-up of his home town, and a disturbing, edgy vision of Cape Town, South Africa, as well as a cluster of societal woes and personal miseries. Although a recluse at heart, Newman, who comes from a family of musicians, met with David Sheff in Beverly Hills. "I asked him about his much-reported eye problem, which causes him to see double," reports Sheff. "He shrugged it off. 'It's no big deal,' he said. 'I can see fine.' To prove it, he focused on me and said. 'I know which one is you.' He pointed toward the window."
An Unforeseen revolution has begun in college athletics: It will soon be fashionable for 280-pound defensive linemen and jet-propelled halfbacks to have reading and writing skills. Assistant coaches on recruiting safaris these days study high school players' S.A.T. scores almost as assiduously as their times in the 40-yard dash. Some academic counselors in athletic dorms are under as much pressure as head coaches coming off 3-8 seasons. And, most wondrous of all, the pre-season hype about All-America prospects is suddenly laden with references to academic majors and gradepoint averages.
Sydney Pollack (whose movies include Tootsie, The Electric Horseman, The Way We Were and This Property Is Condemned): The biggest problem with most home productions is that people get too complicated, trying to get special angles, and so on, instead of just letting something happen. And if you're handholding the camera, jerking is very hard to avoid. If you put the camera on the tripod, move slowly and zoom minimally, you will get a better result. When you get hold of one of these video cameras, the temptation is to treat it like a toy--zooming all over the place and jiggling the camera.
The portability that everyone who owns a small radio or TV takes for granted has now eased on down the road and cut the power cords of such products as telephones, computers and even video-game joy sticks. (No more tripping over wires as you repel extraterrestrials.) And as the electronics industry continues to streamline its offerings, you can expect to see a proliferation of the cordless trend. Telephones that aren't wired for sound come in loud and clear at greater distances, and there's a new take-it-with-you mentality that lets the owner of, say, a radar detector easily unplug and pocket the unit when he's leaving his car. Uncorded history is being written. Celebrate!
The smashing selection of classic tweed suits and sports jackets that are just hitting the fall market calls for "sensible shoes" (as the British are wont to say). But that doesn't mean that the footwear you team with your tweedy threads has to be clunky-looking. On the contrary, manufacturers have put their best foot forward and have crafted a variety of styles, including such classics as the penny loafer and the saddle shoe, served up with a fresh twist. The new penny loafer we're referring to has a blackbuckskin vamp mated with polished leather, and the saddle shoe combines olive suede with brown leather. And the flip side of this fashion story is that dress and sport socks have finally broken loose from their conservative moorings. Argyle and diamond patterns will be prominent in the fall footwear picture, as will such surprising offerings as a pink-cashmere sock that's combined with a brown-leather kiltie loafer. The same goes for a geometric-pattern sock coupled with an updated saddle shoe and a black-pigskin-and-suede lace-up ankle boot with metal closures teamed with a bright-teal sock. Kick some of these ideas around, Mr. Hot Foot, and the combinations you come up with should have you stepping out lively.