Two video events jumped out at Americans this year. The first, in mid-January, was the image of smart bombs hitting pinpointed targets in Baghdad with startling precision. The second, every bit as powerful, was the beating of suspect Rodney King by Los Angeles policemen in March--video-taped by a civilian trying out his Camcorder. The high-tech, low-U.S.-casualty war against Iraq inspired pride among many Americans; the brutal attack on King stirred up a profound unease.
Playboy, (ISSN 0032-1478), August 1991, Volume 38, Number 8, Published Monthly by Playboy, 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60611. Subscriptions: $29.97 For 12 Issues, U.S. Canada, $43.97 for 12 issues. All other foreign, $45 U.S. Currency only. For new and renewal orders and change of address, send to Playboy Subscriptions, P.O. Box 2007, Harlan, Iowa 51537-4007. Please allow 6-8 weeks for processing. For change of address, send new and old addresses and allow 45 days for change. Postmaster: Send Form 3579 to Playboy, P.O. Box 2007, Harlan, Iowa 51537-4007. Advertising: New York: 747 Third Avenue, New York 10017; Chicago: 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago 60611; West Coast: 8560 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, Ca 90069; Metropolitan Publishers Representatives, Inc.; Atlanta: 3017 Piedmont Road Ne, Suite 100, Atlanta, Ga 30305; Miami: 2500 South Dixie Highway, Miami, Fl 33133; Tampa: 3016 Mason Place, Tampa, Fl 33629.
Need an all-star break? From the Emmy-award-winning series Greatest Sports Legends comes Video Sports Cards--an 89-tape collection crammed with highlights and heroics of history's superstar athletes. The winning line-up:
"I don't watch films with a lot of tension," says Broadway's Tony-award-winning director-choreographer-hoofer Tommy Tune. "My life is tension-fraught as it is." So Tune tunes out the world via a "terribly eclectic list of videos"--from environmental mood tapes (of the ocean or a field) to "visually splendid foreign films" such as Bertolucci's The Conformist or Fellini's And the Ship Sails On. "I like foreign movies because I'm from Texas," cracks Tune, "and that's like a foreign country." Other top Tuners include David Byrne's True Stories, the "incredibly truthful" Roger and Me and the sensuous Women in Love ("My skin hurts after watching that one"). What you won't find in Tune's vid collection, however, are adaptations of Broadway musicals. "P.U.," he says, shuddering. "I haven't seen one I liked yet."
For 30 years, Walter Williamshas been singing and writing with the legendary O'Jays, contributing to such classic hits as "Backstabbers" and "Love Train." Currently, the trio is adding to its hit list with songs from the new LP "Emotionally Yours." Naturally, Williams was curious about the sound track of Robert Townsend's "The Five Heartbeats," the film based loosely on the career of the Dells, friends and stylistic brethren to the O'Jays.
Thank God Department: We turned on the radio and heard LaTour's dance single People Are Still Having Sex and it gave us a laugh. Not too many laughs about sex these days, but lines such as "Lust keeps on lurking/Nothing makes them stop./This AIDS thing's not working./People are still having sex" cheered us up. LaTour is a Chicago radio guy and his self-titled debut album is in the stores.
Likely to climb the charts among this summer's hit comedies, City Slickers (Columbia) is a disarming tale about three New York buddies who begin to grow up--and approach middle age--at just about the same time. Comedian Billy Crystal, who originated the story idea and also serves as executive producer, engagingly plays Mitch, a wisecracking salesman of radio advertising time. Mitch's best friends are a henpecked supermarket manager (Daniel Stern) and a horny sporting-goods salesman (Bruno Kirby), who relieve the tedium of their lives with occasional fantasy vacations--such as running with the bulls in Pamplona. On this getaway, they head for New Mexico to play cowboy by taking part in an actual cattle drive.
Since he scored as a baaad Mobster in New Jack City,Wesley Snipes, 29, is fast becoming a household name. He's now on screen in Spike Lee's Jungle Fever, in the role of "an architect married to an African-American woman but in love with this white girl. It's not programed as a statement," he notes; "it's about people being influenced by stereotypes."
One of the tests of manhood in this new era of the Nineties is domestic competence. Once you have proved yourself brave, thrifty, clean, reverent and a dynamite lover, you will inevitably face the question: Can I fix it? "It" may be anything from a burned-out light bulb to an ailing Maserati, but few of us like to concede ineptitude. Guys are supposed to know how to fix stuff. Well, next time you start to roll up your sleeves, consider saving yourself hours, money and humiliation with a trip to the bookstore.
Three women, all good friends of mine, all people I truly respect--and each one of them suddenly announces to me on the same day that Playboy magazine is not something she can easily buy, read or share with her friends.
Just my luck to enter popular history as an anecdote in a Kitty Kelley biography. It's only a partially true one, as I said to reporters from People magazine who called. I was present at the birthday party Maureen Reagan threw for her dog Barnae. But I did not hear Maureen and brother Michael chorus, as Kelley reports, that "Nancy is First Dog." Nor do I think they would have, since they were already sporting buttons that read Barnae for first dog. Maureen observed frequently that they couldn't propose Barnae, who is female, for First Lady, because Nancy was going for that title. In short, the kids were a bit critical of stepmother Nancy--but not as crudely as Kelley suggests.
My husband's 40th birthday is coming up, and I want to do something special for him. He has wanted to try anal intercourse for a long time, but I've always nixed it. I tried it once, long before I met him, and it hurt; hence my reluctance. But, with his birthday around the corner, I checked a sex manual that stressed the need for good lubrication during anal intercourse and realized that my previous experience had been completely unlubricated. This time, I'll have the K-Y handy. But is there anything else I should know about the anal alternative to make it fun for both of us?--Mrs. L. M., St. Paul, Minnesota.
"I think amateur adult videos are very positive, because people are taking into their own hands the redefinition of sexual conduct. They are not letting the priests, the feminists, the therapists tell them what sex should be. These people are rejecting the moralistic Judaeo-Christian attitude toward sex, which is that sex is a problem and the more you can wipe it from yourself, the closer to God you are."
Gauntlet is a feisty, 400-page magazine devoted to censorship. To celebrate its latest edition, the editors sent out a press release with a hit list of the top ten censors in America. Heading the list was Donald Wildmon, who "is to freedom of expression what AIDS is to the gay community."
When the Government discusses the social cost of drugs, it almost never mentions police corruption. We have figures for lost productivity, for stolen goods used to support habits, for children cut down by street warfare. But who keeps a record of cops who betray the badge and who become hooked on the drug of cash?
Over the weekend, he had been in Washington, attending Attorney General Richard Thornburgh's crime summit, which would conclude on Tuesday with a luncheon at the While House. But in one of those curious quirks of fate, as President George Bush was addressing the law-enforcement officials, telling them if they wanted to look at a real American hero, they should look at Los Angeles chief of police Daryl Gates, Gates was already back in Los Angeles becoming, it seemed, an all-American scapegoat.
The Mesa Inn in Westin was braced for the evening by the time I got there. A sign at the door set the dress code: No Torn T-Shirts, No Work Clothes, No Greasy Boots. The bouncer next to it looked like he might be working the job so that he could buy more weights; enough maybe to make the distinction between his neck and his head disappear completely.
At the tender age of 14, Amanda de Cadenet already had a reputation among Britain's scandal-happy tabloid journalists: They labeled the night-club-hopping teeny-bopper the Wild Child. It's a rap that Amanda, now 19, feels was somewhat exaggerated. "They had to find something to write about, but it got to be a pain in the butt, frankly. But now that I'm working all the time, people take me more seriously." Since last August, she has been the copresenter on The Word, a hip television show aimed at younger audiences by Britain's Channel Four; the job followed a similar assignment on satellite TV's Power Station. For the past 18 months, she has also been the significant other for Duran Duran's John Taylor, a relationship she describes as "brilliant, going from strength to strength. We've just sold our house in London and we're getting a bigger one, a family house where there'd be room for a nanny." That does sound serious. When she's not working or cooking dinner for John (specialty: "a good Sunday lunch of roast chicken, potatoes and vegetables"), she studies acting. She had a small role in 1989's The Rachel Papers but turned down a chance to play Mandy Rice-Davies in Scandal. She was only 14 at the time and balked at the nude scenes the character (eventually portrayed by Bridget Fonda) would have to do. "I felt that I was too young then," Amanda explains. "Now I'd do it if the part called for it."
Sitting on a pouf-strewn sofa in the pink living room of her modest Hollywood apartment, Sally Marr, the 84-year-old former dancer and comedian, writes a check for $350, pauses, sighs and tears it out of her checkbook. She hands it to her neighbor, a skinny young man who has recently emigrated from Miami in a black pickup truck with a $1200 paint job to make it as a rock musician in L.A.
Five years ago, who could have predicted that in 1991, we'd be dependent on fax machines, ultra-high-S.P.F. suntan lotion and roller blades? Nobody, not even the people who are getting rich off them right now. Forecasting toys is a tricky business. Two years ago, we gave you a peek at a dozen nifty inventions (Future Stuff, Playboy, September 1989), many of them set to rock the world by 1991. The list was as odd as it was imaginative: cars that fly; stereos with concert-hall acoustics; surgically implanted "eye rings" that flatten the cornea and eliminate the need for corrective lenses; toilets that wash, dry and perfume you without toilet paper; soaring sailboards; gyrating exercise machines; and mood bathing suits that change colors with body temperature. While none of these contraptions has yet made its anticipated splash in the market place (have you seen a mood-suited, eye-ringed babe zipping by in a flying Corvette lately?), busy scientific minds continue to forge ahead, undeterred, blueprinting another batch of gadgets for tomorrow.
STrolling the Strip in her glitzed-out home town, Corinna Harney looks positively tame. A jaunty chapeau atop her gold tresses, a low-cut black blouse under a fish-net sweater that matches her candy-pink lipstick--well, the look is practically prosaic next to the checkered polyesters and wild midnight styles of other Las Vegas Strip walkers. The same can't be said for Corinna herself. She is as surprising as the cactus flowers that sprang from the Nevada desert the week we met her. She's a poet in a town full of dice players, a Vegas lover who has never gambled, a blonde whose hair should have been either black or red (her heritage is Cherokee-Irish, on both sides of the family). In a desert of neon, Corinna is a placid oasis. "I was never quite in sync with society," she says. Growing up in Nevada teaches a girl to make her own way. One way was poetry. When words failed her, she just goofed off: Too young to hang out in the casinos, Corinna and her school pals used to hit the Strip and act silly. "It was great. Everything was open late. We'd watch the people, pretending we were tourists." Sometimes, they were tourist terrorists, using squirt guns or water balloons to startle out-of-towners. The cops put a stop to that; Vegas caters to visitors and expects young locals to find their own fun until they turn 21. On weekends, the kids trucked to the desert. Garage bands plugged in portable generators and bounced thrash rock off the night sky; Corinna and friends danced. They also watched shooting stars. "In the desert, you'll see four or five in a few hours," she says. "I'd make a wish on every one." One of her wishes, way back then, was to be a Playmate of the Month. "And now I am," says Miss August. "Maybe shooting stars do work."
Back in 1350 B.C., the teacher at the Pharaoh's best school for scribes announced a hieroglyphics dictation test. Scrolls and drawing reeds were produced and the instructor began: "Praise be to our great king Tutankhamen...." The students began drawing. "The most noble of kings...." The students continued. "The best loved of leaders...." They still drew. "The most virile of kings...."
It was a war full of stunning images: the view from the "smart" bombs' nosecone cameras; the sight of anti-aircraft fire spraying into the night skies over Baghdad, as the Iraqi gunners shot in vain at Stealth bombers they couldn't see, much less hit; the reports of the Cruise missile that made its way down a street in Baghdad, paused at the corner and took a left, like a commuter going to work.
Robert Downey, Jr., the 26-year-old star of "Less than Zero," "The Pick-up Artist," "Chances Are," "1969," "True Believer," "Air America" and, most recently, "Soapdish," lives in a Los Angeles gingerbread house he shares with actress Sarah Jessica Parker. When Contributing Editor David Rensin met the energetic young actor there, Downey immediately led him to an upstairs office, where he wanted to video-tape the interview. He quickly abandoned that to show off his electronic keyboards, Macintosh computer, fax machine, stereo setup, video and television equipment. "About the only things that weren't plugged into the wall," Rensin told us, "were the Abdomenizer, the Lifecycle and Downey himself."
Its true. Golf has taken over everything. It has insinuated itself into the otherwise tight twill of our everyday lives. For it, we abjure those things that are responsible, honorable and for which we endured years of arduous training. Golf has become a nonnegotiable demand on our time. And what do we get in return? Golf's current abuse. It used to be immensely rewarding. Here was a relationship we could understand. But lately, golf has been tarted up. Its once wholesome, animal allure is now in danger of losing its soul.
Most golf instructors believe they have given the perfect lesson. Unfortunately, the result is not always perfect. As Red Auerbach reminds us, it's not what you teach, it's what they learn. We teachers of this wonderful game need to pay more attention to what the pupil understands of the lesson and how he can feel and practice the motions that work for him.
Mickey Yokoi was in jail. Golf jail, the kind with bark on the bars. The green was just 60 yards off, but a stand of pines blocked the way. A small, wiry man dressed in Gary Player black, Yokoi choked a sand wedge and took a practice swing, wishing the wedge were a chain saw. Then he hit a shot you and I dream of--it hooked a bit, hopped twice and rolled tight to the flag. His birdie got him within sniffing distance of the leader board at the Shreveport Open.
If you want to make a Texan see red, try the approach Barry Goldwater of Arizona used to tick off the late John Tower of Texas on the floor of the Senate back in 1974: "Senator," said Goldwater, "a Texan does not know chili from the leavings in a corral" and, with that, challenged Tower to a chili cook-off. As it turned out, the judges gave the nod to the Arizonan's mix of ground beef, chili powder and pinto beans--three ingredients Texans wouldn't allow in the same room with what they have come to regard as their state food.
Simply stated, the automobile industry is in chaos. Manufacturers who expected to sell 14,000,000 cars and trucks in 1991 (compared with the 16,000,000 sold in 1986) will be lucky to top 13,000,000. They not only overestimated demand but introduced an abundance of new makes and models at a time when consumers just weren't buying. And they're paying dearly for the miscalculation: Temporary plant closings are increasing. Layoffs and other cost-cutting measures have gone into effect. Detroit's Big Three have even reduced first-quarter dividends in an effort to free operating cash.
East coast girls are hip. Southern ones have knockout accents and Northern girls keep their boyfriends warm at night. But West Coast dudes, from the Beach Boys to David Lee Roth, agree: Wish they all could be California girls. The West Coast has the top H.P.H. (hardbodies per horizon) factor in the land, according to Overheated Hardbody Research and Development (OHRAD), a private watchdog group commissioned especially for this pictorial. Once OHRAD reported scenes such as the ones you see here and on the next eight pages, we dispatched five photographers to capture the best and blondest of California's girls, to bring them back alive for your required beach reading this summer. If there's no sand in your neighborhood, turn on all of your lamps, find a big towel to lie on and choose a tall, cool one--first from the refrigerator, then from the 23 beauties we introduce here.
If You Can't Walk the Walk ... Don't Talk the Talk
Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it," wrote George Santayana. The war in the Persian Gulf brought my past back with a vengeance. Don't get me wrong: I was a hawk in a time of hawks. I supported our troops in the Gulf 110 percent. But that is not the point.
Americans' obsession with hot foods has led to an extraordinary range of hot sauces, salsas, pastes, etc. To help you choose, we taste-tested some of the best brands from around the world and rated them (with chili peppers, of course) according to over-all flavor. The results: Some were just OK (one pepper) and others were excellent (five peppers). Fire when ready!
What's the Difference between Lenny Bruce and Andrew Dice Clay?
Lenny Bruce had principles. Andrew Dice Clay has an attitude. Lenny's persona was gentle. Clay's is harsh. Lenny's act exuded compassion. Clay's reeks of hostility. Lenny was humble. Clay is smug. Lenny tried to liberate taboos. Clay exploits them. Lenny challenged stereotypes. Clay perpetuates 'em. Lenny was complex. Clay is one-dimensional. Lenny was poignant. Clay is pathetic. Lenny tried to unite people. Clay seems to divide them. Lenny loved subtlety. It makes Clay nauseated. Lenny aimed for the highest common denominator. Clay aims for the lowest. Lenny was a legendary talent. Clay is a flash in the pan. Lenny fought for freedom of expression. Clay is the ultimate risk of that freedom.
Cocktails are back in style, and to make them correctly, you need the appropriate glassware and, of course, a cocktail shaker. But forget the kind of choreographed moves that Tom Cruise and Bryan Brown used in the movie Cocktail. A strong over-the-shoulder rock with the shaker to the count of ten will do just fine. And remember, ice goes into the shaker first, alcohol last. That way, all the ingredients are properly cooled. Also, use new cubes for each drink; shaken ice has already begun to melt. "Never point the shaker at anyone or use club soda in it," says Ray Foley, the publisher of Bartender Magazine, "unless your girlfriend is wearing a T-shirt and wants to have whatever you're mixing on the knocks." We'll drink to that.