We're wearing Sable this month and we're not keeping her under wraps. As befits the queen of wrestling and a woman who can kick our collective ass, we've given her the cover. Inside you'll find eight pages of the strongest model-turned-wrestler in the WWF, shot by Arny Freytag. Her pet move is the aptly named Sable bomb. Mix up some Jell-O and prepare to be pinned.
Playboy (ISSN 0032-1478), April 1999, Volume 46, Number 4, published monthly by Playboy, 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60611. Subscriptions: U.S., $29.97 for 12 issues. 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: 730 Fifth Avenue, New York 10019 (212-261-5000): Chicago: 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago 60611 (312-751-8000); West Coast: SD Media, 2001 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 200, Santa Monica, CA 90403 (310-264-7575); Southeast: Bentz & Maddock Inc., 5180 Roswell Road, Suite 102, South Building, Atlanta, GA 30342 (404-256-3800): For subscription inquiries, Call 800-999-4438.
The hot British import Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (Gramercy) falls into a genre best described as nihilist chic. This hip, post-Tarantino underworld yarn is by turns clever, funny, nasty, audacious and brutal. It's the story of a young fellow (Nick Moran) who lives by his wits, until selling stolen merchandise on the street becomes too risky. So, with two mates, he raises the £100,000 he needs to get into a high-stakes poker game, unaware that Hatchet Harry runs a crooked setup. Before long, money is owed, henchmen are dispatched, loyalties are betrayed and guns are brandished. The characters have names like Bacon, Soap, Dog, Plank and Barry the Baptist, and violence is a part of their everyday lives. To his credit, director Guy Ritchie discreetly cuts away from the bloody specifics--but the impact is still enormous. So is the humor. Toward the end, with the inevitability of its climax in sight, the film loses some of its spark. Still, it's a fresh take on gangster noir. [rating]3 bunnies[/rating]
The recent succès d'estime Gods and Monsters brought unprecedented attention to a man who previously was known mainly to film buffs and scholars: director James Whale, played so wonderfully well by Ian McKellen. Bill Condon's screenplay was based on a 1995 book by Christopher Bram, Father of Frankenstein, which speculates about the once-great filmmaker's homosexual liaisons and his final days in Hollywood.
The most shagadelic news we've heard in months comes from the set of the Austin Powers sequel, where additional camera angles may be shot for inclusion on the eventual DVD release. Viewers would be able to watch scenes from angles other than those chosen by the director. We really could have used that in the carefully choreographed final scene of the original, wherein Elizabeth Hurley manages the most hilariously dignified striptease in film history. Groovy, baby! The Big Chill 15th Anniversary Collector's Edition DVD from Columbia TriStar ($24) benefits from digital remastering and features a 56-minute documentary on the phenomenon the movie spurred. For some inexplicable reason, though, the famously cut flashback scenes featuring Kevin Costner as Alex, the friend whose death brings these yuppies together, are not among the extras included on the disc. Sidney Lumet makes great points on the commentary track accompanying his Night Falls on Manhattan (Paramount, $30), but he can't dance around the fact that it's not up to his NYPD corruption milestone, Serpico. Why not? As we learned in The Godfather Part III, Andy Garcia is no Al Pacino.
"I like drama," says Chris Carter, creator of The X-Files. "Great Expectations--the old one--Raiders of the Lost Ark, Citizen Kane and The Red Shoes. Those are the movies that have stuck with me over the years. I flash back to them often. Sometimes, you watch movies for inspiration. And if you flip through the cable stations and there are nothing but lousy movies on, it feels like everything you do is lousy. But if you watch a great movie, it actually puts you in the mood to write something terrific. Great work can inspire great work. I do watch some science fiction movies--Mysterious Island is one of my favorites. But by and large there isn't a whole lot of science fiction I like."
Directors of distinction like to slip a "how'd they do that?" sequence into their movies. Take a look at Snake Eyes, on tape now, in which Brian De Palma opens with a nearly 15-minute Steadicam shot that follows overcaffeinated detective Nic Cage through a busy casino into a packed arena. Here's more:
The music business regularly discards great rockers, but there's no reason for you to do so. Not when veteran artists like Peter Wolf of the J. Geils Band make albums as mature and dark as Fool's Parade (Mercury), in which his blues and R&B merge beautifully with his confessional writing style. Imagine Mick making an album of Dylan songs, and doing it with dignity.
Ray Charles wasn't the first black artist to break into mainstream pop charts in the early Sixties. But he was certainly the first to do so without compromising. He did it by stretching Tin Pan Alley ballads with jazz phrasing, gospel fervor and R&B intensity. The key was his genius for cramming emotion into understated arrangements. Or, as the great Dizzy Gillespie marveled, no one else had the guts to sing so slow and still swing so hard. Ray Charles: Love Songs (Rhino) is a colletion of 16 of his most soulful yet sophisticated ballads. He takes country chestnuts like I Can't Stop Loving You and You Are My Sunshine and turns them into smoldering R&B masterpieces. And almost 40 years later, both Ruby and Georgia on My Mind retain their power to transport. To this day brother Ray coyly refuses to say whether the latter song is about a person or a place, but he sure sings it like he's making love to both.
To television fans, Cree Summer is known best as the bohemian on A Different World. She abandoned acting to focus on music, and the result is the impressive Street Faerie (Sony). Produced by rock stalwart Lenny Kravitz, this collection is defined by Summer's voice--a blend of warm honey and raspy authority--and trippy songwriting. Summer's songs have unexpected harmonies and sharp lyrics. The opening cut, Revelation Sunshine, is light pop with a strong vocal hook. Mean Sleep, a duet with Kravitz, is a passionate piece about a dispiriting relationship. Fall places Summer's voice against minimalist guitar, strings and background vocals to haunting effect, and Soul Sister is an unself-conscious examination of feminine fellowship. Taken as a whole, Summer's debut, with an able assist from Kravitz, shows she may be headed for pop stardom.
When people dismiss black pop as manipulative, do they feel threatened by how the new love-men articulate tenderness? After all, most guys aren't above being manipulative--they're just not as good at it as Boys II Men. That's why they'll feel threatened by R. Kelly's R. (Jive). Since 12 Play, Kelly has been a phenomenal hitmaker, but in the wake of his Space Jam smash, I Believe I Can Fly, he's jacked up his skills to Prince's level. For over two hours, the boasts, promises and assertions of vulnerability never let up. Most are slow jams, but Kelly adeptly negotiates dance tempos, sometimes in the company of rappers such as Keith Murray and Foxy Brown. The only problem is that, just as guys say, it's all so transparent. There is one song that rings with unmistakable conviction. It's called Only the Loot Can Make Me Happy.
It was 1961 when harp player Junior Wells first recorded with guitarist Buddy Guy. Their final show together was in 1993, at Guy's Chicago club. The resulting loose-limbed, off-the-cuff, acoustic Last Time Around: Live at Legends (Silver-tone) is a joyously musical record. The highlight: Ray Charles' What'd I Say is so nice they do it twice.
Steve Tibbetts has made a habit of keeping his musical imagination vibrant by going to exotic mountain ranges and jungles to record with local musicians. On Å (Hannibal), he extends this tradition with a trip to Norway to work with Knut Hamre, a master of an ancient variety of fiddle called the hardingfele. Tibbetts, who can play both quiet acoustic and roaring electric guitar with amazing facility, keeps mostly in the background here, weaving his counterpoint around the hardingfele. Northern Europe has some of the world's most beautiful folk music, and Hamre and Tibbetts really nail it. In its use of simple melodies fading in and out of the foreground, this album is reminiscent of Steve Reich's work. Great for late-night meditation.
Twenty Centuries of Hits (Rhino) is the ultimate greatest hits package. Forget about the best pop music of the century, or even the millennium. These 23 tracks cover every century of the past two millennia. The songs are popular in the sense that they're not classical and are in the Western tradition. The collection starts with a Greek hymn to Apollo that was inscribed at Delphi in 138 B.C. and winds up with Chuck Berry doing Johnny B. Goode. The record's heart is in ten centuries of plainsong, or chant--back when the church was the only place to hear real soul music. These haunting hymns really do soothe, and their melancholy modalities later inspired Miles Davis and Puff Daddy. In the 12th century, the troubadours created the medieval equivalent of rock and roll. Harmony and counterpoint come into the picture, and modern ballads such as Barbara Allen and Greensleeves soon follow. Whether you're down with rap or up on opera, you'll find your musical roots here.
Live albums are rare in hip-hop. Where rock stars define their music via live shows, rappers have usually exploited remixes for that purpose. So Survival of the Illest: Live from 125 NYC (Def Jam) is a rare document. That alone makes it worthwhile, but several of the rappers bring even more intensity live than in the studio. DMX, whose recorded work is marked by a manic attack on the mike, is outstanding here on Stop Being Greedy, Ruff Ryder's Anthem and Money, Power, Respect with the Lox. Also shouting and rhyming on the album are the Def Squad (Erick Sermon, Keith Murray, Redman), Onyx and Cormega, with cameos from Foxy Brown and Method Man.
The country supergroup Old Dogs is kind of a Traveling Wilburys for guys who don't get around much anymore. They are Waylon Jennings, Mel Tillis, Bobby Bare and Jerry Reed, but the bite behind the bark of their debut, Old Dogs (Atlantic), is songwriter-cartoonist Shel Silverstein, who penned all 11 songs on this live album. Backed by a veteran 12-piece Nashville band that includes Hargus "Pig" Robbins on piano, Old Dogs covers Rough on the Livin', a still-timely ballad to forgotten Nashville stars that Silverstein wrote in 1980, and the fast-talking blues Still Gonna Die. But the 1997 honky-tonker Cut the Mustard is the hot condiment for these cool cats as they sing, "I ain't too old to cut the mustard./I'm just too tired to spread it around."
What I Deserve (Rykodisc) is a purely ironic title, since Kelly Willis knows there is absolutely no chance she's going to get it. Her sinuous, sensuous, booming, caressing voice is as comfortable sliding through slow blues as it is belting hot honky-tonk. Her ability to draw sexiness out of serious songs probably deserves some kind of historical marker--it's doubtful anyone else named to People's list of the 100 Most Beautiful could begin to handle it. Her talent merits a Grammy for her versions of Not Forgotten You and Cradle of Love, and a medal for definitive versions of Nick Drake's Time Has Told Me and Paul Westerberg's They're Blind. Rather than the riches and mass audience she truly deserves, Willis will have to settle for having made another magnificent album.
Heinrich Biber (1644--1704) was a peculiar baroque violinist who composed curious works. A great new label, Winter and Winter, has released a hauntingly beautiful two-CD recording of Biber's Mystery Sonatas. Violinist Marianne Rônez plays the 15 sonatas with an admirable delicacy. A new seven-CD set, Masters of the Baroque (Nimbus), should take care of your baroque needs. Representing compositions by Bach, Vivaldi, Telemann and Handel (among others), this is an especially good recording for lovers of brass music. Anne-Sophie Mutter's glorious tone comes through on her four-CD recording of Beethoven's Violin Sonatas (Deutsche Grammophon). Recorded with pianist Lambert Orkis, these sonatas are both virtuosic and pure.
For an adrenaline fix with a brain-boosting chaser, visit the Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, California. More a theme park than a stodgy showcase for historic relics, this $96 million Silicon Valley attraction has its own IMAX Dome Theater, plus a wild range of interactive exhibits that let you play astronaut, roller coaster designer, earthquake survivor and Olympic bobsledder, among others. The idea is to give visitors a hands-on feel for present and future technologies, says a museum spokesperson. A few not-to-be-missed feels: Jet Pack Simulator lets you experience zero gravity in a NASA-inspired manned maneuvering unit. Underwater Pilot puts you in command of a remotely operated vehicle similar to the ones used to explore the Titanic wreck. And for those who want to prep for the Big One, Restless Planet lets you climb aboard a shake table to feel the vibes of the world's most infamous earthquakes. For more details (including museum hours), see thetech.org.
Using a laptop's arrow keys to control video game action is about as appealing as having phone sex with Linda Tripp. Fortunately, the Kensington Technology Group has introduced the Gravis Stinger (pictured top right), the first game controller designed exclusively for portable PCs. The Stinger is small and smart, with ten programmable buttons and a directional pad that provides joystick-like control for flight and driving sims. It connects directly to your PC's serial port (no add-in game card needed), and you can use it with a desktop machine when you're not on the road. The price: $40. Equally cool is Kensington's WebRacer (bottom right). This supermouse combines a touch pad for getting around in documents and a slew of buttons for Internet navigation. Talk about efficient. Six buttons can be programmed to launch your favorite websites. A menu button scrolls through bookmarked sites, and Quick Keys handle the back, forward, reload, stop and print functions of common web browser software. There's even an e-mail Quick Key that takes you directly to your mailbox. The $100 WebRacer is PC compatible and works with all the essential web browsers and plug-ins.
Last year thousands of laptop computers were stolen in the U.S. That's no big deal for people who have just a few rounds of Asteroids stored on their hard drives. Most homeowners and renters insurance covers the hardware. But if your lifework is tucked away in your laptop's innards (and some of it is confidential), the problem is bigger than replacement costs. Our advice: Invest in security. Top-of-the-line protection includes Cyber-Angel and CompuTrace, which work similarly to the security systems that track stolen cars. Software installed on your hard drive requires you to enter a password before the computer boots up. If a thief attempts to bypass the log-in (or plugs in the wrong password), the software turns off your modem speakers and silently sends an alarm to a monitoring service (via a network or Internet connection). The assumption is that most stolen computers will ultimately be used for online activities. When that happens, you're notified of the stolen laptop's whereabouts. Presumably, the police will take on the task of retrieving it. Prices start at about $85 for the first year (including software and monitoring service) and $50 for each subsequent year of monitoring. At $100, LapJack is a more affordable choice. To boot up your notebook computer you simply plug an activation key into the parallel port. No key, no access.
The whizbang of the Web is fun, but don't overlook the simple efficiency of e-mail. E-mail newsletters, or e-zines, are launched every day, and subscribing (for free) is as simple as typing your e-mail address into an online form. Here are a few favorites, along with the websites where you can sign up: News of the Weird (nine.org/notw) and This Is True (thisistrue.com) liven up the week with bizarre-but-true news. Net-surfer Digest (www.netsurf.com) reviews websites devoted to technology, current events, science, reference sources and the offbeat. The curmudgeon behind The Outrage (theoutrage.com) shares his entertaining rants on topics such as NBA labor negotiations and government waste. Lockergnome (lockergnome.com) is an excellent guide to useful Windows freeware, shareware, games, updates, tips and themes. And the sardonic Ghost Sites (disobey.com/ghostsites) highlights outdated sites that should be put out of their misery, including the official Mission: Impossible movie page.
Have you noticed that great mysteries are macabre career guides? Elmore Leonard takes a basic criminal--former loan shark Chili Palmer--and uses that character to show the sleazy underside of the entertainment industry. In Get Shorty, Chili meandered into a scriptwriting deal, drawing on his intimate knowledge of desperate dreams, shaky promises and the seduction of easy money. Returning in Be Cool (Delacorte), Chili is an established film producer (his wildly successful Get Leo was followed by the turkey Get Lost). Hunting for the theme of his next screenplay, he does lunch with Tommy Athens, a record company exec. A wig-wearing hit man does Tommy, and the fun begins. Leonard takes the reader on a tour of the record biz, from promo men to superstars. The sidemen--bodyguards with crossover dreams, and refugees from a Spice Girls cover band--are superb. Adding to the insider's guide, Leonard lets real acts (e.g., Aerosmith) make cameos. He even borrows real lyrics for his fictional band. In Chili's world, it's not about art, it's about money. In Leonard's hands, it's about art.
Photographers have always been fascinated with the human body. What's remarkable is that classic nude photography remains so immediate. Four recently published books reveal that old photos can be as compelling as ones taken yesterday. Nude Photography: Masterpieces From the Past 150 Years (Prestel), by Peter-Cornell Richter, surveys the work of 62 photographers (the picture below is 1923's Portrait of R., by Alfred Stieglitz). Man Ray: Photography and Its Double (Gingko), edited by Emmanuelle de L'Ecotais and Alain Sayag, is a great overview of work from the Twenties and Thirties by the Philadelphia-born surrealist. There are wonderful nudes here--especially of photographer Lee Miller. Jacques Henri Lartigue, Photographer (Bulfinch) entices the viewer into a beautiful belle epoque world of motion, coquetry and childish innocence. With its tremendous and rare color photographs, Lartigue's Riviera (Flammarion) evokes a magical way of life.
If The Rules left you reeling, join the club. But long before Ellen Fein and Sherrie Schneider's postfeminist land-the-man-of-your-dreams guide, there was Doris Langley Moore's The Technique of the Love Affair (Pantheon). Those who know that pleasure is serious business will appreciate and be charmed by this 1928 classic--updated and annotated by Norrie Epstein--for its practical approach to Flapper-era sexual pursuit and conquest. And you thought Dr. Ruth knew it all.
Science fiction writing has evolved well beyond tales of Martians, but the red planet still provides rich literary terrain for a storyteller with the wit and imagination of Larry Niven. In Rainbow Mars (Tor), the five-time Hugo Award winner presents Hanville Svetz, a weary but engaging time traveler whose job takes him to Mars in the Middle Ages with able astronaut babe Miya. Their discovery of a beanstalk beyond anything Jack encountered offers an apparent boon for the budget-conscious Institute for Temporal Research. The beanstalk is an intriguing explanation for the canals on Mars and great reading for science fiction fans. The earthbound 21st century characters in John Barnes' Finity (Tor) do their traveling in parallel universes. Skillfully combining the uncertainty principle with virtual reality, Barnes sets up a heady premise in which a group of chat room friends, all American expatriates, slowly realize they have learned different versions of history. The story's sturdy paranoid underpinnings collapse when the characters learn they've been selected for a Mission: Impossible-like operation. But their assignment is compelling: Find out what happened to the U.S. Paranoia is the driving force in Waiting (Forge), a spellbinding novel by acclaimed master of suspense Frank Robinson. A chance discovery of a different species of humans gives a San Francisco TV newswriter reason to feel paranoid--everyone with whom he shares his information suffers a suspicious but explainable death. He must determine who, or what, is behind the killings, and why he is allowed to live. The science fiction realm has always saved room for humor, but there's barely enough to contain Christopher Moore, the clever comic novelist who transports his own wild universe to every literary genre he visits. In The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove (Spike), Moore brings an ailing sea monster with a contagious sexual demeanor and an appetite for humans to a California trailer park, where he camouflages himself as a mobile home to elude discovery by a pot-smoking constable. He is nursed back to health by the town's resident nutcase, a faded action-video queen. If there's a funnier writer out there, step forward.
You will be pleased to hear that a health club in Miami offers an aerobics class called Step Is a Drag, led by Claudio Cantillo, a gentleman who wears spandex tights, makeup and a woman's wig. Not to be outdone, a gym in New York employs a trainer named Anthony Truly, who offers Abs, Thighs and Gossip sessions. During his classes, Truly likes to dish with his clients as he grades--on a one-to-ten scale--the sex appeal of various men who pass by the window.
The holy war against drugs is increasingly about power, and that includes the power of various Beltway bureaucrats to enforce their will against the will of the people. The greatest victim may be democracy.
It's early morning and Nick Nolte is scrounging for food in the kitchen of his Malibu house. A caged raven, (which fell from a tree, was rescued by Nolte and refused to leave once recovered) is squawking, the five dogs are barking and the cat is hiding under the couch. The 58-year-old actor grabs some yogurt and walks out to the garden, where he picks fresh wild berries, sprinkles them into his dish and enjoys a healthful meal. He has cleansed his body after years of abusing alcohol, psychedelics, mind-altering plants and steroids, and he has taken a keen interest in alternative medicine. "The medical sciences are on the cusp of a big change," he says. "I run around the country hooking up with different doctors and scientists to see what they're doing, to learn why saliva tests are better than blood tests for hormones, to learn more about DNA and how it can signal predispositions for Alzheimer's and heart disease, to understand how protein keeps cellular reconstruction going on. I'm fascinated by all this stuff."
Hot so long ago, it was simple for exam-weary collegians to determine their spring break itineraries. It was either Daytona or Fort Lauderdale--period. Not anymore. Today, students are more worldly-wise, so when it came time to track the nation's annual spring break posse, we headed to the newest spots on the bikini front: South Padre Island, off the southern tip of Texas; Cancún, off the coast of Mexico's Yucatán peninsula; Panama City, Florida; and, for old time's sake, Daytona Beach. Our crew, led by Contributing Photographer David Mecey, returned with a portfolio that makes us wish we were in college again--or at least dating someone who is.
Best-case scenario, spring break 1999: You travel, hassle free, with three of your best buddies to Shangri-la for seven days of sun, sex and hedonism. You attract more horny chicks than Tommy Lee does at a Motley Crue show. You get no sleep, eat and drink as much as you want and return home disease free, more tanned than George Hamilton and with a stellar selection of digits in your pocket. (Note: Those are for show only--no spring break fling should go beyond spring break). Worst-case scenario: Thanks to a freak snowstorm you lay over in Cleveland and then arrive at your destination: a tourist-saturated beach town offering nothing but prudish girls and $10 pitchers of alcohol-free beer. Your souvenirs include herpes, second-degree sunburn and a tattoo of Daffy Duck saying, I Quacked Up On Spring Break '99. Don't want to become a casualty? Follow our fail-safe guide. The trick is to do everything you wouldn't be comfortable telling your mother about, but nothing that will result in jail time, a paternity suit or permanent body modification.
I'm on the rooftop, man. Horse Badorties has climbed up onto the roof for some nude sunbathing in his overcoat. How wonderful, man, to be grappling along the edge of the roof in my overcoat. There is no danger of sunburn, man, owing to the overcoat covering me and the fact that it is nighttime. It has unexpectedly turned out to be night, but these things happen, man, it's to be expected in an ever-changing world.
Explaining the need for bigger engines, a product developer at a motorcycle company once told his bosses that American men want three things: pussy, money and horsepower. "Women control 100 percent of the pussy and 80 percent of the money," he said. "The only thing left is horsepower." Bigger is not only better, it's bigger. This is what they mean by living large. Power is the gift men give themselves.
Natalia Sokolova has come a long way. Born and raised in Moscow, Miss April journeyed from the shadow of the Kremlin to the pages of Playboy by way of the University of Maryland and the Hawaiian Tropic International competition in Las Vegas. But the trip wasn't easy: Five years ago, just after beginning her freshman year at Maryland, Natalia was in an auto accident that left her facing life in a wheelchair. "I returned from the dead," she says of her remarkable recovery. Now determined to explore her new life, our statuesque Russian beauty delivered her hard-earned wisdom over lunch in West Los Angeles: "My great-grandmother's favorite saying was, 'There's no such word as can't. There are only such words as don't want to.' That became my motto."
If you're a guy who gets off pushing buttons, the latest touch-screen gadgets are for you. Slick on the surface and loaded with bells and whistles, these wired wonders employ the kind of sophisticated liquid-crystal touch technology once limited to pricey business machines. You've probably tapped out commands on ATMs and shopping mall kiosks--now you can do the same on cellular phones, universal remote controls and home theater audio-video receivers. Virtually anything that has buttons can be operated by a touch screen, according to Chris Cudina, senior product marketing manager of video at Sharp Electronics. A world leader in LCD research and development, Sharp pioneered the use of touchpad control in handheld electronic organizers and recently introduced the first camcorder with an LCD screen that doubles as a controller. The VL-PD1U, pictured at right, offers in a streamlined package all the features of the most advanced video shooters. The absence of buttons, says Cudina, is a big draw of touch-screen tech. "Touch gadgets are intuitive. The menus prompt you along." So how do you keep your grubby mitts from mucking up the gear? Just wipe the screen with a clean, dry cloth--"or your shirttail or tie in a pinch," says Cudina.
Start with the name. Chazz. Pure street. Calogero Palminteri was 11 when he got the name. A tall, pouty-lipped Bronx kid, maybe the only 11-year-old on Belmont Avenue who needed to shave. Good with his fists. "I had my fights. Not in the gym, in the street," he says. "The rule in a street fight is this: First guy gets in a shot, he usually wins. So what you do is to sound like you don't want to fight. 'Listen, we don't have to do this,' or 'Look, I don't want to fight you,' like that, till you're close enough to hit the guy. Bam. First shot."
To think that the webcamcraze--and the ability to use the Internet to peek into our bedrooms, bathrooms and backyards--got started with a coffee pot. Back in 1991, a bunch of hackers at Cambridge University grew tired of trudging to their break room only to find the coffee pot empty. Rather than waste precious computing time, they installed a camera to keep an eye on the pot and, in turn, to tell people that it was time to brew a new batch. Today, surfers by the thousands continue to visit the Trojan Room Coffee Pot (www.cl.cam.ac.uk/coffee/coffee.html) as well as the hundreds of other webcam sites that transmit images from oddball locations around the world. Here are our favorites. Webcam Classic:The Amazing Fish Cam (www1.netscape.com/fishcam/fishcam.html): If you're thinking of owning an aquarium, this tank will show what that will entail. Yes, it's cool watching exotic fish swim around, but have you ever seen such murk? Popular Peeks:Aloha Cafe (aloha-cafe.com/ns2/cafe_cam.html): This 24-hour Honolulu hangout is as close as you're going to get to sipping lattes at a virtual café. Except here you can stare at the customers without being caught. Baddgrrl (baddgrrl.com/BigScreen3Main.htm): The star of this site is a San Francisco sexpot who rides a motorcycle, has a blue belt in tae kwon do and has been known to flip off visitors who e-mail messages like "Show me your tits." Although live cameras run in both her home and office, Baddgrrl makes it clear up front--you'll never see skin. Guess she's not so bad after all. Crown Bar (www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/crown/): Point your browser here to catch drunks dancing the jig on top of tables or falling off their bar stools in fits of hysterics. Just make sure you drop in at the right time--this Belfast pub is open from 11:30 a.m. to half-past midnight BST. The Nerdman Show (nerdman.com): The ultimate egotist on the Web has to be Nerdman. He has 17 live cameras running simultaneously in his house, office and parking lot. Playboy Live (www.playboy.com): The next best thing to partying with Hef and the Playmates at the Playboy Mansion is watching them party via our own web camera. We've rigged our electronic eyeball to webcast all the hottest scenes, from Hef's Halloween and New Year's bashes to Mardi Gras 1999. Our next hot ticket? The 1999 Playmate of the Year Party. Be there. Pointless Fun:Random Camera (www.xmission.com/~bill/randcamera.html): This game of Net roulette spins you off to one of the hundreds of webcam sites. Tech-Savvy:Steve Mann's Wear Cam (genesis.eecg.toronto.edu/myview.html): Our Webcam Creativity Award goes to Mann, who hooked up a small wireless video camera to his glasses so we could see the world through his eyes. Australia's Telerobot (telerobot.mech.uwa.edu.au): Relying on the same remote-control technology that NASA uses to manipulate the space shuttle, this interactive webcam allows you to command a robot located at the University of Western Australia. PumaPaint (yugo.mme.wilkes.edu/~villanov/): Using similar remote-control gear, Puma lets you play Picasso, painting a picture across the Net. Provide your address and the creators of this site will mail you your masterpiece. Adult-Cams:JenniCam (jennicam.org): Thank Jennifer Ringley for initiating the bedroom-cam trend. Jenni, as she's known to her fans worldwide, installed her first webcam in her dorm room at Pennsylvania's Dickinson College. Now the strawberry blonde has 24-hour cameras peeping at her home office and bedroom. Let's just say Jenni ain't the shy type. She's single, open-minded and has been known to meet some of her site's visitors for dinner. Get your best e-mail line ready. Sex Is Good (sexisgood.com): Chad and Kyla--a pair of California hardbodies--share their boudoir (including convenient mirrors) with the world. For the bargain price of $2 (for 24 hours) or $60 (per year), you'll enjoy plenty of bang--so to speak--for your buck. Vacation Spots:Beach Cam: Venice, CA (westland.net/beachcam/): Sun, surf and plenty of Baywatch wannabes make this a must-bookmark web-cam site. Snowride Webcams (snow ride.com/index.html): Who needs TV meteorologists? Snowride has webcams watching over some of Colorado's best winter resorts, including Aspen, Copper Mountain and Steamboat. Some of the cams, like the one perched at Eldora, give you a prime shot of the skiers, too. Say cheese.
On any given Monday, millions of 12- to 34-year-old males ditch out on televised football in watch Raw Is War, the World Wrestling Federation's in-your-face grappling extravaganza. The program, a Jerry Springer--All My Children crossbreed, features a whole lot of ass whupping and melodramatic plot lines involving good versus evil. It's very entertaining. But the real reason we tune in, and perhaps the reason Raw Is War is the USA Network's highest-rated series ever, can be seen on these pages. Her name, in case you've been living under a wrestling mat, is Sable. Known outside the ring as Rena Mero, the Florida native modeled for Guess. Pepsi and L'Oreal before becoming the WWF women's champion. We pinned her down for an exclusive interview. (text concluded on page 173)Sable(continued from page 128)
Another One Bites the Dust • Call Me • Do That to Me One More Time • Another Brick in the Wall • Rock With You • Woman in Love • Magic • It's Still Rock and Roll to Me • Cruisin' • Lost in Love • The Rose • Hungry Heart • Take Your Time (Do It Right) • Ladies Night • More Love • Desire • Whip It • I'm Coming Out • Hurt So Good • Lookin' for Love • Rappers' Delight
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