It Began at breakfast. Associate Articles Editor Rob Fleder and occasional Playboy contributor Laurence Shames were catching up, discussing the state of the world and the state of their social lives. Both had noticed a change in their personal relationships: "Call it the negotiator's tango." It was that moment of instant recognition—that aha! experience—the making of a serious, useful connection. On one hand, you have best-selling books, including Getting to Yes, by Roger Fisher and William Ury of the Harvard Negotiation Project, and You Can Negotiate Anything, by Herb Cohen. On the other hand, you have those disturbing discussions with your intended: What about privacy? What about fidelity? The tactics of the board room have moved to the bedroom, and Shames, in Sex in the Age of Negotiation (illustrated by Dennis Mukai), analyzes that negotiator's tango.
Playboy, (ISSN 0032-1478), November, 1983, Volume 30, Number 11. Published Monthly by Playboy, Playboy Bldg., 919 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, Ill. 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.
A rule of thumb is a recipe that people use to make up for a lack of facts. A rule of thumb may not tell you the best way to do something, but it will help you guess and get away with it. For several years, Tom Parker has been collecting such rules from around the world. His book "Rules of Thumb" will be published this fall by Houghton Mifflin.
Don't let the title put you off or lead you to expect a gangland melodrama; The Big Chill (Columbia) is a crackling contemporary comedy—worldly, warm-blooded and wonderfully put together. Writer-director Lawrence Kasdan (here with Barbara Benedek as co-author of the screenplay) is the man who wrote Raiders of the Lost Ark and Return of the Jedi, wrote and directed Body Heat. He must be doing something right. Big Chill exudes Kasdan's skill and confidence. You know you're in good hands from the moment it begins—in a poky Southern town where eight friends stage a kind of class reunion after the suicide of their friend Alex. Seven of them are University of Michigan alumni, Sixties rebels who have become affluent, unsettled, unsure of what motivated their youthful idealism and zeal. "I hate to think it was all just fashion," one muses.
And now, for those of you who enjoy the quiet sort of nitwit humor that always seems to go for the chuckle rather than the belly laugh, the kind of comedy that is, finally, more American than Oklahoma City, Atheneum presents From Approximately Coast to Coast ... It's the Bob and Ray Show, a collection of radio scripts by Bob Elliott and Ray Goulding, perhaps the most semicelebrated comedy team in living memory. Share the intensity of "General Pharmacy" ... "the dramatic story of handsome young druggist Ross Flecknoy and his struggle to save humanity at the prescription counter of a pharmacy still technically owned by his aging father." Further, note the incisive sports-interview techniques of Biff Burns as he grills Edgar Barnhorst, who is proposing that the N.B.A. lower the basket two feet so that "any middle-aged man standing 5'6" should have enough talent to play pro ball." We say enjoy, and thank you, Bob and Ray, for quiet parody in an otherwise noisy place.
Warning: The editor who makes these choices has lately taken to staring disconsolately at the turntable, calling the time lady and reading firearms manuals. We strongly recommend that you stay away from the stuff on the Not list.
Classical Hot Licks: Last year, when classical musician Richard Stoltzman performed the first solo clarinet recital ever held in Carnegie Hall, Benny Goodman led the audience in a standing ovation. After five encores, Stoltzman ended with a spine-tingling rendition of Amazing Grace, not exactly a classical staple. The critics went nuts. The New York Times praised his "exceptionally personal approach to every piece he plays" and The Boston Globe drooled over his "gorgeous sweetness." As if parrying with his admirers, Stoltzman later moaned, "The only thing I'm thinking about when the performance is over is that I didn't die up on that stage!"
Jimmy Buffett, the king of Gulf & Western music, has been exploring new oceans lately—personally and musically. He has fallen in love with Tahiti and environs, for one thing; and he's got a whole new band, for another, with three percussionists, including a steel drummer from Trinidad and Little Feat's former conga player, plus Timothy Schmit, late of The Eagles, on guitar. Anyone who saw Buffett's summer tour will agree that these guys rock—especially on Rodney Crowell's Stars on the Water and Van Morrison's Brown Eyed Girl. Both are on Buffett's new album, One Particular Harbour (MCA), with some changes in latitudes, if not attitudes, from the originals. The title cut strikes out toward more exotic regions than he's gone before, and there's one cut he told us is "sung by a wino in the year 2020." Buffett's still sailing away.
Setting The Scene: The lights dim, the overture begins, the curtain rises and what do you see? Vegetables, rats and weasels. What's going on here? This is Broadway, after all, not some punk club on the Lower East Side. Relax, folks; it's opening night on the Great White Way for the most inventive Mother of them all, Frank Zappa. The only resemblance of this high-tech extravaganza to a typical Broadway show, says Frank, is that it will run in a legit theater. Thecharacters from his various songs will have roles in the production, which Zappa is writing and producing but not performing in. Who'd want to compete on stage with a rutabaga, anyway?
You Can have the new shows. As the fall season gets under way this month, I won't be holding my breath. Whom are we kidding? Sure, a dozen spanking-new and very expensive shows will be launched, as always. But nearly all of them will fail fast and deservedly. The one or two that survive aren't likely to be the most experimental ones. Last season's biggest hit, after all, was The A-Team.
Idol Gossip: Maureen Stapleton and NBC-TV's Saturday Night LiverJoe Piscopo have been signed to join Michael Keaton in 20th Century-Fox's spoof of Thirties gangster movies, Johnny Dangerously. Stapleton is set to play a character named Mom Kelly, while Piscopo will portray the Keaton character's archrival, Danny Vermin.... Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner will top-line Romancing the Stone, a romantic comedy-adventure about a successful authoress of adventure novels who suddenly finds herself thrust into a real-life romantic adventure in South America.... Blake Edwards will direct Richard Pryor and Burt Reynolds in The Music Box, a film inspired by a Laurel and Hardy short that won an Oscar in 1932. Edwards is also set to write the screenplay....Jason Robards will play the title role in HBO's Sakharuv, a made-for-cable biopic of the dissident Soviet physicist. Also on HBO's shooting schedule are Draw!, a Western starring Kirk Douglas and James Coburn, and To Catch a King, a World War Two spy thriller with Teri Garr and Robert Wagner.... Robin Williams will play a Russian saxophonist in Paul Mazursky'sMoscow on the Hudson. More on this one as events develop....Francis Ford Coppola will direct The Cotton Club, the story of the famous Harlem night spot, set in the Twenties. The flick will star Richard Gere and Gregory Hines.... After several years of false casting announcements, The Pope of Greenwich Village, based on the best seller by Vincent Patrick, will go before the cameras with Eric Roberts in the lead role.... Dan Aykroyd will star in Empire Man, the tale of a Texas evangelist who runs for political office.
My girlfriend recently had the occasion to go to bed with a former lover, which confirmed her memory that regular old missionary-style intercourse with him gives her a rapid and effortless orgasm. She always has an orgasm when we make love, but we have to work much harder at it and she feels incompletely satisfied. She misses the effortless experience that she gets with him. Emotion does not seem to be at issue here, since she says the psychological part of lovemaking isgreat with me and marginal with him. Fingers do not seem to help. Our best hypothesis is that my relative slimness means I have no flabby abdomen to jiggle against her sensitive parts. Do you have any less drastic suggestions, or will I have to get fat for her to get happy?—L. S., St. Louis, Missouri.
No one would linger outside a Fargo, North Dakota, hotel side entrance on a frigid April morning, clutching an Inslamatic, without a very good reason. The same can be said of the group huddling at the edge of a snow-swept Duluth runway, waiting for the passengers in a private jet named Marianne to disembark. And of the two coeds in a Porsche whose relentless pursuit of a singer's limousine forced the man to pull over and hand out passes for his show that night.
I Work only with extreme trauma and emergencies: gunshot wounds, knife wounds, car accidents, appendectomies. Mostly, it's street trauma—wounded people off the street. I worked through the big Miami riot late last year. The night it broke out, I hadn't been listening to the radio and I didn't know what was happening as I drove to work. About a block from the hospital, there was a police roadblock. They said they weren't letting anyone through because it was dangerous. I said, 'I've got to get to the hospital. They need me in the emergency room.' They let me go through. You don't want to know what it was like in the operating room that night."
Until Recently, tempering Scotch whisky with mixers was considered a sacrilege. Despite the occasional Rob Roy or rusty nail, real men imbibed their Scotch neat or on the rocks. Not so in the mother country. British quaffers treat their smoky brew with more nonchalance—and a measure of imagination. Ginger ale, soda and lemonada (in England, a fizzy, lemon-flavored soft drink) are favorite mixers. Scotch whisky and cola—don't wince—makes it with the younger crowd. Traditional drinks, such as sours, old fashioneds and milk punches, are not unknown, and many an angler casting his bait on the waters of the River Tay or the Strath Oykell—one of the queen mother's favorite salmon streams—packs a container of Gaelic coffee: Scotch whisky, hot Java, cream and a "wee pickle o' sugar."
Approximately 15 billion cigars are manufactured every year. Of that number, less than two percent constitutes the world's output of premium, hand-rolled cigars. Behind the terms premium and hand-rolled lie a thousand variables that can account for anything from an acceptable smoke to a masterpiece. At the very least, the core, or filler, of a fine cigar must consist of whole leaves laid lengthwise, not chopped and (continued on page 182)Gentlemen, you may Smoke(continued from page 105) shredded as they are in a cigarette.The binder that surrounds the filler must be natural leaf, not the processed tobacco sheet, made from tobacco pulp, that is found in most machine-made cigars. The outer covering, or wrapper, must be rolled onto the cigar by hand, and it, too, must be of natural leaf, selected for its appearance, flavor and elasticity. Simple enough criteria. Yet, except for the work of a dying breed—one- and two-man cigar rollers hidden away on the side streets of Miami, New York and other major American cities—that definition excludes any cigar made in the United States today. Not that patriotism has meant much, judging by the reported preferences of patriots from John F. Kennedy to Henry Kissinger—men given to upholding the Cuban-trade embargo on one hand while fondling their favorite H. Upmann or Montecristo in the other.
When I go to France, they think I'm French. When I go to Italy, they think I'm Italian. Anywhere I go, that's where they think I'm from. It's amazing!" Veronica Gamba is deceived. We were talking with her in California, and she clearly wasn't from there. Such exotica is rarely home-grown. She is, as you may suspect, imported—from Argentina. Indeed, her ancestors were among the founders of the Argentine Republic, which makes her sort of a princess of the pampas. Her mother, who was living in Germany, met Veronica's father on a holiday in Argentina. Their subsequent marriage extended her vacation, and two little Gambas, Veronica and her brother, cemented the union. When her father died, the family moved to New Rochelle, New York, and later to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where Veronica and her mother still live. Veronica has just wrapped her second decade. Since high school, she has been a fashion model working an international circuit that has included Houston, New York, France and Italy. Most of the time, she travels with her mother. The two are practically inseparable. "She's my best friend," Veronica gushes. "She's always for me, whatever I want to do. Anything! I can go to her and tell her anything. She gives me advice, I give her advice; that kind of a relationship. I think it's nice to have a friend, not just a parent."
We don't know whether it's the upturn in the economy or the memory of last year's blustery days and frigid nights, but coats in a variety of fabrics and styles, from black leather to the classic double-breasted camel's hair, are very much a part of this fall and winter's fashion picture. The lengths, in general, are longer—not so much to keep your knees warm as to create an over-all polished appearance. Coat lengths are relative, however; so if you're on the short side, make your selection with an eye to balance. Too long a coat on a short man comes off more Chaplinesque than classy. Because a coat is a major expenditure, put your money on one that will serve double duty for both formal and casual occasions. The aforementioned black-leather storm coat looks elegant over an evening suit, yet it's also right at home atop more sporty clothes, including jeans and a turtleneck or a tweed sports jacket and slacks. When you go shopping, save a few extra shekels for a long multicolor muffler that can be thrown over your shoulder or tucked inside your coat, depending on your mood. Winter's almost here, gang. Step lively.
When Bubba Smith does his Miller Lite Beer commercials, the public sees a self-parodying giant. Opponents who faced the former Baltimore Colts All-Pro defensive end saw a different person—a football player whose just-published autobiography "Kill, Bubba, Kill!" is not inappropriately titled. Craig Modderno met with Bubba in Toronto, where he was filming the movie "Police Academy." His report: "Bubba is funny, shy, bright, soft-spoken and calls everyone Babe. His idea of a fun night on the town is taking a writer to a gym, asking the journalist his weight and then bench pressing twice that amount. People mispronounce his first name, but nobody ever makes fun of it."
It was a warm spring evening. I was alone at home, sitting, standing and lying around my apartment, reading, watching the tube, going over the accounts and working a two-month-old Times Triple Crostic—I4 had fallen a little behind—when the outercom buzzer gave my signal.
"The Play's the thing," William Shakespeare said, but maybe he meant "the plan." When we decided to do a face-and-hair-grooming guide, we turned to Washington Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann—a player who has faced the best of times and the worst of times—to illustrate our survival-of-the-fittest point of view on skin-and-hair care. When Theismann confronts the man in the mirror, he has his grooming game plan together. Locker-room savvy demands that he tackle his beard after a requisite hot shower. The heat and the steam score points as beard softeners, since hot water reduces the friction and the pull of a shave by 30 percent. Dry whiskers have the tensile strength of aluminum, but a beard softened by steam or hot water absorbs one third of its own weight (concluded on page 230) Winning Grooming (continued from page 134) and becomes more receptive to the blade. Mem's Cambridge After Shave for Sensitive Skin will fend off the effects of wind and weather and guard skin from pollutants. Skin-care expert Ilona of Hungary, whose salons tend to the hides of fans of the Chicago Bears, the Houston Oilers, the New York Jets and the Denver Broncos, gave Playboy her face-saving credo:
Whack! Born in the Sixties and just ending a wild growth spurt in adolescence, racquetball is the world's fastest-rising sport. It won't be played at the 1984 Olympics (it's several countries short of the 25 required for eventhood), but the little blue ball will probably make its first international bounce at the 1987 Pan American Games.
"Among all women," said Yonosuke, "a young widow is perhaps the easiest to seduce. Consider her state of mind as the months pass by after the funeral. She walks about with vacant eyes. On stormy nights, when the thunder rolls and the rain beats down, there are leaks everywhere, because she has forgotten to have the roof mended. She awakes from a bad dream and remembers how she used to nestle close to her husband. She thinks of suicide or even of becoming a nun.
Any year that brings us not one but two James Bond movies—one starring the urbane Roger Moore, the other the unflappable Sean Connery—can't be all bad. On the other hand,any year that brings us better than a dozen cartoon-strip Star Wars spin-offs, in which not only the animation but also the plots seem computer produced, has a lot to answer for. Sex, it would seem, has been temporarily shelved in favor of special effects, at least in the mega-buck attractions that have been luring the kids to the wickets, with George Lucas' Return of the Jedi already pegged as one of the biggest grossers ever. True, in that opus, Princess Leia is briefly threatened with ravishment by the monstrous Jabba the Hutt (looking for all the world likea huge beached walrus); but the modus operandi of such a union is as baffling and unlikely as that of King Kong with Jessica Lange. And even though Carrie Fisher is garbed in a slinky, seductive gown, one has the feeling that old Jabba could do better than Leia, while her romantic interlude with Harrison Ford is as idyllic as a shampoo commercial—and just about as brief.
If you weren't Dancing this year, don't say that nobody told you to. While David Bowie proposed Let's Dance, the durable Kinks doubled back with Come Dancing and Don't Forget to Dance. And just about everybody was tripping down Electric Avenue. No wonder all the women were wearing Danskins this year. If you're able to stop long enough to catch your breath, you can register your opinion of all this hopping floor-board action in the annual Playboy Music Poll. You'll find our suggestions listed at right; if we've missed your favorite, a write-in is fine. But, please, if you're voting for someone whose name does appear on the list, help our ballot counters and use the number beside the name. When you've finished side one, flip the ballot over and make your choices for Hall of Fame and Best LP categories. Only official ballots count, and they must be postmarked before midnight, November 1, 1983. For the beat on how you voted, look at our April 1984 issue. Meanwhile, keep on dancing.
Life at the corporate top calls for big decisions, and if your executive responsibilities land you in the fast lane, where mega phone calls and financial calculations are S.O.P., then cancel that request for a battery of secretaries and invest in an EDO System Six Hundred instead. For $895 (that's the cost of a few weeks of temporary help), you get a 38"x24" leather-and-brushed-aluminum electronic desktop assistant that combines telephone communications, calculator, calendar and timing functions in one sleek unit. You like to walk while you're wheeling and dealing? Set the phone in the hands-free mode and you can carry on a call with no voice clipping. Sorry, J.B.—it doesn't make coffee.