Life at Playboy can be rough. After long days of offering the best writers in the country high fees for their great fiction and nonfiction, and then facing up to our responsibility to review hundreds of seductive photographs of beautiful young women, we editors can get pretty worn out. As we fight the unceasing battle, it does us good to read about journalists who have suffered similar trials (well, not exactly) and lived to tell the tales.
Playboy, (ISSN 0032-1478), April 1987, Volume 34, Number 4. Published Monthly by Playboy, Playboy Building, 919 North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60611. Subscriptions: In the United States and its possessions, $56 for 36 issues, $38 for 24 issues, $24 for 12 issues. Canada, $35 for 12 issues. Elsewhere, $35 (U.S. Currency) 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 55230, Boulder, Colo. 80323-5230, and allow 45 days for change. Circulation: Jack Bernstein, Circulation Promotion Director. Advertising: New York: 747 Third Avenue, New York 10017; Chicago, 919 North Michigan Ave., Chicago 60611; West Coast: 8560 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles 90069.
Twenty Years Ago, a young blues guitarist named Steve Miller signed his first contract with Capitol Records, saying, "I'm going to be making records here in 20 years." He was right. His latest Capitol release, "Living in the 20th Century," is his 17th LP. We asked him to review "Live Alive," by another esteemed blues guitarist, Stevie Ray Vaughan.
Two would-be New York actresses who have been sleeping with the same man (more precisely, a rat, portrayed by Peter Coyote) learn that their mysterious lover is on the lam out in the Western badlands and may destroy the world unless they can stop him. At last they do, of course, abetted by George Carlin and a tribe of motorbiking Indians armed with bows and arrows. Did I mention that Outrageous Fortune (Touchstone) is a camp-it-up comedy co-starring Bette Midler and Shelley Long, directed at reasonably high speed by Arthur Hiller? Well, brace yourself, because these women make their way winningly through the kind of slaphappy misadventure once considered the purview of Hope and Crosby on the Road to virtually everywhere. Eluding CIA men as well as a Russian acting coach with possible K.G.B. connections, Long plays the serious-minded simp who affects ethnic accents and proves conclusively that she knows her Stanislavsky. Midler handles the down-and-dirty lines in her patented manner, twisting simple innuendoes into lariats to roundup laughs by the carload. Without Bette, there might be time to sit back and ponder pesky questions about the screenplay. With her, doubts are soon banished and Fortune smiles. [rating]3 bunnies[/rating]
The only time we hear about them is when they blow something up. So The Arabs: Journeys Beyond the Mirage (Random House), by David Lamb, comes as a well-timed relief from the bum raps, the exaggerations and the silly stereotypes from which our burnoose-wearing friends suffer. As he was in The Africans, Lamb is journalistically alert--his account of the first days of the Israeli occupation of southern Lebanon is first-rate, and one even comes away with a better understanding of the delicate and dangerous complexities of that devastated country. Lamb gives good overview and introduces something fresh into the Middle East: a calm evenhandedness.
As chancellor of this university, I have long been in favor of cleaning up the image of collegiate athletics, and I therefore wanted to be absolutely certain that we had nothing but student athletes on our basketball squad before we sent the kids off to compete for the $800,000,000 that goes to the winner of the Final Four.
There is something dead at the center of most feminist rhetoric today. The ideas behind it are rattling like bones in a closet, and we sense that the keepers of this angry faith are mouthing clichés, not truths. Try this, for example:
There'll be no amnesty; that's clear by now. My last hope was when they reformed the tax system. I thought they were going to give us bandoleros a chance to come down out of the hills without paying the full price for our fugitive years. Didn't happen. So this is it, the moment I've been worrying toward all these years. This is the confession. I'm tired of life underground. I can't go through another April, cruel and sweaty as they've become. It's time to come clean.
My husband and I have been together since our first date six years ago. He is 32 and I am 36. I probably had more sexual experience than he had prior to our meeting, but neither of us would have qualified for the Guinness Book. When we began our relationship, I had already tried and rejected most artificial methods of birth control for various health and aesthetic reasons, so from the beginning, we used basal body temperature combined with creative lovemaking as a safe, fun and effective method. We had intercourse only on rare occasions, and although I missed it somewhat at first, the alternatives more than made up for what I was missing. My husband--then boyfriend--didn't seem to miss it at all. I became accustomed to almost never having intercourse; however, because of this infrequency, I have been like a virgin every time. With enough foreplay and lubrication, the pain gives way to pleasure and I usually have no trouble reaching orgasm. But--and I wonder how many times these words have been uttered by a woman--he takes too long to come. I usually have to ask him to withdraw in five to ten minutes after my orgasm because of discomfort, and we use other means to his orgasm. Although he'd like to come inside me, he says he doesn't mind and I really think he doesn't. So, no problem, right? I mean, we're talking safe--never as much as a close call in six years.
Shortly before the November elections, the President went on TV to announce a crusade against drugs. He told the nation that drug abuse cost society 60 billion dollars a year--a figure that soon became engraved in stone.
In 1973, the United States Supreme Court adopted the test for obscenity set forth in Miller vs. California. The Miller test was thought to be a major step forward, for it acknowledged that local rather than national standards should be applied in banning obscene material. The Court, however, provided little guidance as to how those standards should be determined.
One of the sexual conflicts that may never be resolved is her idea of commitment versus your idea of commitment. Although there may be no resolution to this clash of viewpoints, we can at least try to explain it. Warren Farrell, author of the book Why Men Are the Way They Are, observes:
It's cases like Ted Bundy's that make people crazy. This nice-looking, smooth-talking son of a bitch may have murdered upwards of 35 people--killed many of them horribly, causing them and their families more pain and suffering than anyone should encounter in a hundred lifetimes--yet the state of Florida can't keep him strapped in its electric chair long enough to throw the switch. Before and after each stay of execution, he brags that they'll never do him in. And he could be right. Only six hours away from his latest appointment, he was spared again--this time with an indefinite stay so the court can hear an insanity defense.
Wall Street raiders, white knights and greenmailers wage wars for control of some of the nation's prize companies. A new tax law, the most revolutionary in decades, affects every American's 1040. Business journalists, once relegated to the financial section, now find themselves covering front-page human-interest stories on layoffs and cutbacks that cost thousands of jobs. Not a few work the police beat, as the greatest insider-trading scandal in Wall Street's history continues its spasms.
Representative Richard A. Gephardt (Democrat, Missouri) is the co-author, with Senator Bill Bradley (Democrat, New Jersey), of the Bradley-Gephardt Fair Tax plan, which was the precursor to last year's tax-reform law. Gephardt, 45, is in his sixth term in the House and is campaigning for the Democratic nomination for President in 1988. He is a member of the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee and was a member of the House-Senate Conference Committee, which wrote the final version of the tax-reform act that Congress passed last September. This interview was conducted for Playboy by nationally syndicated columnist Donald Lambro at the beginning of 1987.
Only a few details of the internal machinations of CBS News were familiar to me when I went to work there in 1985--the year that CBS and CBS News themselves became the news. I had worked as a reporter and an editor--or, as people in television say, "in print"--and I had friends from print who had sojourned in TV, and some of them had run screaming into the night. So I made a solemn vow before I went into TV to keep a close watch on my mental balance, and I promised myself that if it ever got too crazy, I would get out. What I probably was naïve about was CBS; but, then again, probably nothing could have prepared me for what life at CBS turned out to be.
Not long ago, Madison Avenue discovered that something very special happened when women started to sheathe their legs and holster their hips in denim jeans. Some of the ads appear opposite: Georges Marciano for Guess Jeans, Calvin Klein and--our favorite--Appaloosa, which makes its pitch by showing what happens when there is an absence of jeans. The effect of these ads was to kindle a cool fire, to explore those aching moments that are kinesthetically poised between restraint and desire, between oneself and one's jeans. We thought we'd turn up the heat a bit on this notion and let all that lightheaded languorousness loose.
In the Desert outside Tucson, it's 109 degrees--slow weather for a job that's all speed. No air conditioning in the gray Ford minitruck with the Airborne Express logo, and it's a good 300 miles racing down to Nogales and back before this day says good night. No sweat. Steve Robinson likes the heat. In fact, he digs the entire express racket--this real-life, zip-fast desert game of Beat the Clock. In the slip stream of C.B.-equipped truckers, he's chasing booty that includes legal documents, medical supplies, high-tech gizmos and who knows what else due "absolutely positively overnight." No, that's not Airborne's slogan; it belongs to Federal Express, whose long shadow haunts everyone else in this frenzied business. (continued on page 158) Fight by Night (continued from page 79) "Speak of the Devil," says Robinson at an industrial park as a Federal truck pulls out as he shoots in. Then he takes careful aim with an imaginary rifle.
In 1976, seven years after she graduated magna cum laude from law school at Georgetown, Sally Deegan became a partner in the San Diego firm of Thompson, Roche and Royce. She specialized in corporate reorganizations, acquisitions and takeovers. She was good at her work and her work was good to her. Ten years later, on a cold November Thursday, she reported on her life to her classmate Paul Mariani at lunch in Parker's in the grand old hotel in Boston.
I came into the weird mercenary vortex of Soldier of Fortune magazine when the phone rang in 1980. The voice on the other end was low and conspiratorial, the vocal cords sounding as if they had been ravaged by gargling gravel. Something in it whispered of far places and dark secrets too evil to be told.
Driving After Dark is a night game whose rules are different from daytime motoring's. You can't travel as fast in the dark (and shouldn't) and you can't spot the cops if you do. Night driving is also fatiguing, and there's always the danger of dozing off. Still, there are precautions you can take and products you can buy to help get you through the night safely.
When you walk into Caffé Trieste, it's easy to forget that this is 1987. Tucked away on a narrow little street in San Francisco's colorful North Beach area, only a short walk from the famed Condor Club, where Carol Doda, the original topless dancer, defied gravity for some 21 years, Caffé Trieste is an old-fashioned coffeehouse, a throwback to the Beat Generation ruled by Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg, a place where disheveled intellectuals congregate to drink very strong coffee, smoke unfiltered cigarettes and debate the big issues: God. Art. Politics. Travel.
My two assistants and I had just returned from a three-hour lunch at Riccardo's, celebrating the wrap-up of an ad campaign that we had designed and produced under a crunching schedule. The legendary Dr. D.L. Henry, our agency's biggest client, was waiting for us when we got back.
So it was one of those days. Fill in the blanks. And the last thing you want to do is go home and join the designer-food grazing circuit. Yet, you have to eat, and even if you lack the time and inclination to play Julia Child, that doesn't mean you have to settle for baloney on a bun. By all means, open a can or defrost a package. But fast and good aren't mutually exclusive. A few extra minutes--even seconds--can transform the most pedestrian packaged food or leftovers into a meal that arouses even the weariest taste buds.
You can call Tina Turner a lot of things: rock-'n'-roller; soul or ballad singer; dancer; actress; the consummate sexy woman, with the greatest legs working a stage in either hemisphere; and our favorite authority figure--because when Tina sang "You better be good to me," our obedient readers responded, to our great delight, by electing her to the Hall of Fame.
Giacomo Casanova was 73 when he died--a ripe old age as 18th Century life expectancies went. But even by the standards of that bawdy era, this mercurial priest, soldier, alchemist, gambler, violinist, escape artist, confidence man, royal-lottery director and holder of papal dispensations was a legendary cocksman. Perfect stuff for the movies--and Casanova has, in fact, been played on screen by, among others, Tony Curtis, Donald Sutherland and (!) Bob Hope. Now he's being resurrected again--for TV, with Richard Chamberlain, king of the miniseries, starring.
Rae Dawn Chong's first picture, at 19, was "Quest for Fire," in which she introduced ancient man to the missionary position. Her most recent film is "Soul Man." In the intervening five years, the daughter of comic actor Tommy Chong has graced Arnold Schwarzenegger's "Commando" and Mick Jagger's video "Running out of Luck," as well as "The Color Purple," "Choose Me" and "Beat Street." We asked Contributing Editor David Rensin to do for money what we'd gladly do for free: meet with her. "I found Rae Dawn in the kitchen," Rensin recalls. "She grinned, giggled and said she was a big fan of '20 Questions.' "
Forget the limos, champagne and Versace suits. In the well-tailored world of the recording industry, Rick Rubin (left) and Russell Simmons (right) stand out like Barry Manilow at a rap concert. These are two executives who are scruffy, mean-street smart and very successful, and insiders credit their three-year-old company, Def Jam Recordings, with taking rap from the playgrounds of Harlem and making it sell (yes, sell) in the cornfields of the Midwest. Their ear for the urban beat is unbeatable. "The people at the major record companies are 40 and 50 years old," chides Rubin, 24. "You can't expect them to know what's going on." Of course, even some younger listeners have been mystified by rap's popularity. Not Rubin, however, who claims that rap has much in common with the previous big teen craze, heavy metal. "They both have a hard sound," he says. "I grew up listening to AC/DC and Aerosmith, and our rappers scream just as loud as they do." Unsatisfied with mere chart-busting success, Rubin and Simmons, 29, are branching out into the movie business with a gangster flick called Tougher than Leather, which stars, appropriately enough, rap kings Run-D.M.C. "I've got seven gold records at home, but making movies is what really excites me right now," says Simmons. Having launched Def Jam with a mere $4000 stake, the duo is finding films a costlier undertaking. "Making a movie is like taking a big bag of money, holding it upside down and letting all the bills drop out," Simmons moans. "When the bag is empty, you have a movie."
Friends call her the Roger Corman of erotica, and Candida Royalle, 36, likes the title. "Like Corman, I'm out to find young film-making talent, especially women directors and writers. I want to give them the break they need," says the ex-porn star turned X-rated-film director, producer and minimogul. "I want to establish a whole new genre of eroticism from a woman's perspective." With Femme Productions, Royalle leads a growing crusade to make hard-core films for the home-video market--a market in which women are major consumers. So far, she has produced, written and/or directed four films for Femme, geared to "a woman's sensibility--with, ideally, real-life lovers making real love in a slow, sensuous way." Royalle, who misbehaved in front of the cameras for upward of 30films during a six-year career, much prefers her new role. "Becoming a porn star was a way for me to be sexual under the guise of playing a role. It's how I overcame my Catholic good-girl guilt about sex," she says.
Some people say he has a pen so poison it's registered as a deadly weapon. Others call him one of the best editorial cartoonists working. Tom Toles, however, is not thrilled with his fate. He only reluctantly took his first job as a newspaper artist ("I had to eat"); an impressed editor saw his drawings and knew he had talent. Even so, Toles, 35, had to be dragged "tied and screaming" into his current job as editorial cartoonist at The Buffalo News. Did something click? Hardly. "I struggled with it for a decade before getting any satisfaction at all," he says. Even today, with his work syndicated in 125 newspapers, Toles is less than euphoric. "It used to be like taking a final exam every single day," he moans. "Now it's more like a pop quiz." True to form, he isn't doing any long-range career planning. "When I think how hard it is to do one cartoon, and then of how many I'd have to do until I'm 65, it's numbing," he complains. "But I don't know. I'm not really qualified to do anything else."
"For years, I was very concerned about making mistakes," says the co-host of ESPN's SportsCenter. "Credibility is so important for a woman. Every announcer makes mistakes, but if you're a woman, you get beat up more for them." Gayle Gardner seldom gets beat up. She's smart, fabulously redheaded, and she knows more about sports than you do. TV Guide called her "the best cat at a dog show." USA Today, playing it straight, called her the best woman sportscaster in television. A New York girl who grew up living and dying with the local teams, she left a TV production job ten years ago to take a shot at becoming the Billie Jean King of jock talk. "I had no idea what an undertaking it would be," she admits now. Sportscasting was no woman's land. She was ignored, insulted and worse. She was wrestled out of the Montreal Canadiens' locker room by the team's owner. Locked out of the Boston Red Sox' men-only clubhouse during a downpour, she demanded--and got--a soggy interview with baseball commissioner Bowie Kuhn. She built her credibility brick by brick, landed the SportsCenter job and 4,000,000 viewers in 1983 and is now more famous than some of the Mojsiejenkos whose names she has to pronounce every night. There's only one problem: ESPN's red-shifted cameras, which sometimes make her look like a talking head on fire. "Allegedly we're getting new cameras," she says. "My hair's red, but not quite that red."
It's morning drive time and the program on your car radio takes a sudden humorous twist. Maybe it's that fake ad (Mary Lou Retton selling out, again and again) or dialog so politically barbed it evokes Saturday Night Live. If you're chuckling while you commute, chances are it's because of the handiwork of Andrew Goodman (right) and Bob James (left), the guiding lights behind the American Comedy Network, which syndicates topical humor and satire to more than 175 radio stations nationwide. "We're like comedic Don Quixotes," says James, 35. "We do a lot of tilting at windmills." Recent windmills have included Iranscam, the Meese commission and the arms-control mess. Not everyone--especially A.C.N.'s targets--finds Goodman and James funny. When the Southland Corporation decided to ban Playboy and other magazines from its 7-Eleven stores, the A.C.N. had a field day with mock ads. "Our doors are open and our minds are closed," one spot ran. Southland responded through its attorneys, of course, but was told by an undaunted Goodman, 31, "Get in line. If nobody ever called to complain, we'd know we were really missing the mark."
Ever since Enzo Ferrari first put the cavallino rampante, the prancing colt, on the side of one of his cars almost four decades ago, the marque has been synonymous with a no-compromise approach to style and quality. Now Ferrari has moved into the fast lane of status accessories, where, until now, Porsche Design held the inside track. Ferrari Formula, as the collection is called, will include pocket leather goods, travel items, desk accessories, attaché cases, sunglasses, smoking accouterments and a collection of watches--all tastefully emblazoned with the Ferrari name or colt and often accented with a touch of Ferrari red. Check your mirror, Ferdinand--Enzo's gaining on you and looking to pass.
"Letter Perfect"--of all the women in the world, which one would you most like to see featured in a Playboy pictorial? we've got her, in a series of breath-takingly beautiful photos. A sensational surprise bonus exclusively for readers of the magazine of entertainment for men