Enough astrophysics. It's time for a study break, and Playboy's college issue is chock-full of diversions. For those of you still wondering, "Who is Keyser Soze?" we present the man who made that character so compelling--Kevin Spacey. In our Playboy Interview by Michael Fleming, Kevin Spacey Fowler (his real name) reveals he's a Gong Show reject who was booted out of a military academy and recently got naked on camera for a movie in which he doesn't play a creep.
Playboy (ISSN 0032-1478), October 1999, Volume 46, Number 10, 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.
Albert Brooks is so naturally funny that it almost dosen't matter what the plot of his latest film is about. Nor does it matter that, like so many of his self-made vehicles (co-written with Monica Johnson), the parts are greater than the whole. The Muse (October) gives us undiluted Albert as a once-successful screenwriter who's told at every turn that he's lost his edge. when he reveals to a friend (Jeff Bridges) that a studio has dropped Brooks' contract, Bridges admits he faced the same problem until he took up with a muse (Sharon Stone). The problem with this modern-day messenger of inspiration is that she's demanding and mercurial, with a taste for jewelry. That's all any critic of conscience should reveal about this film. The Muse gives Brooks an opportunity to toss off a spate of hilarious observations and one-liners in the framework of a somewhat silly story. He's surrounded by compatible co-stars (including Andie MacDowell as his devoted wife) and the gibes at life in Hollywood are particularly sharp. [rating]3 bunnies[/rating]
Through all the advances in film making techniques from Edison's The Great Train Robbery in 1903 to Austin Powers of 1999, one thing has remained constant: Movies are printed on 35mm film, and those cumbersome (and expensive) prints are then shipped to thousands of theaters around the world. Until now.
Charles S. Dutton is having a banner year. He won rave reviews for his performance as the laid-back Willis in Robert Alt-man's sleeper success Cookie's Fortune, which he calls "the first opportunity I've had on film to play a complete human being. I enjoyed doing it because the guy was totally devoid of anger and rancor and bitterness, though the movie is set in Mississippi." He's co-starring with Harrison Ford in this fall's Random Hearts and with Sylvester Stallone in Detox. The parts may be as sidekicks, but they offer high visibility in A-list movies with A-list stars.
Hollywood's top stars get all the glory and money, but face it, it's the character actors who do the heavy lifting. In fact, some of today's stars have established themselves through reliable, even inspired, supporting work. Here are dossiers of a few (some of whom still do admirable switch-hitting):
Clara Bow defined the flapper and embodied much of what was exciting about the Jazz Age--she was charming, passionate and sweetly sexually aggressive. But until now, her films have been hard to come by. Runnin' Wild: The Films of Clara Bow (Kino Video, $24.95 each) is a series that includes It, Parisian Love and The Plastic Age, as well as Clara Bow: Discovering the It Girl, a documentary co-produced by Hugh Hefner and narrated by Courtney Love. Her Brooklyn accent killed her talkies career. But do yourself a favor and meet the woman for whom the Twenties roared the loudest.
"My favorite is the French movie Children of Paradise," says Bob Simon of 60 Minutes II. "The screenplay is by the great French poet Jacques Prévert, and it's funny and sad and makes me well up every time I see it. Another favorite is Life is Beautiful. It's so human and touching. When I heard that an Italian director had made a movie with comic elements about the Holocaust, I thought it was outrageous. But it was tender and beautiful, and I can't think of anything harder to pull off." Any American movies? "I saw There's Something About Mary the other week and thought it was great. There were half a dozen horselaughs. Plus, I can look at Cameron Diaz for a couple of hours and be very happy."
And now for something completely familiar but nonetheless different. First-season episodes of Monty Python's Flying Circus, the seminal British TV comedy series celebrating its 30th anniversary this month, are being released on DVD by A&E Home Video. Each disc features three half-hour programs (at $30, or in $45 two-disc sets) and benefits from digital remastering. Good thing, too, because most of the tapes that have been airing in syndication look a bit weathered. Not that we'll ever tire of such side-splitting antics as Eric Idle's nudge-nudge-wink-wink routine (episode 3, disc 1), drill sergeant John Cleese instructing recruits in self-defense against fruit (episode 4, disc 2) or the upperclass twit of the year contest (episode 12, disc 4). Two superb examples of late-Seventies Australian cinema have recently made their DVD debuts: director Bruce Beresford's 1976 comedy Don's Party (Win-Star, $30) and Peter Weir's 1981 war epic Gallipoli (Paramount, $30). The latter, with Mel Gibson in the lead, features the director's commentary, as do new Paramount releases of Weir's later American films Witness (1985, $30) and The Truman Show (1998, $30).
Asie Payton died tow years ago while driving a tractor in a cotton field. Almost no one outside his mississippi farming community had ever heard of him. But on Worried (Fat Possum) his music emerges as the best ragged but ripe Delta blues in years. Payton isn't a great singer or player. But throught his lens, even a slow drag version of Joe Tex' Skinny Legs and All becomes personal--its emotions intensified and brought low. Payton does this even as the power of his music lifts you up.
Ani Difranco has her own record company and has promoted her own brand of radicalism on numerous solo folk albums. Her latest, Fellow Workers (Righteous Babe), is her second CD with Utah Phillips, a wonderfully funny storyteller who has a long history of union organizing. With DiFranco and her band providing the music, Phillips interweaves anarchist history with personal reminiscence and an occasional folk song. Whereas a lot of leftists try to shame their audiences into doing the right thing, Phillips invites you to mix a little fun with your politics.
Ray Wylie Hubbard's Crusades of the Restless Knights (Philo) cements his position as the current king of Texas folk poets. These are stories so dark that the best solace the angel in There Are Some Days can offer is, "You're not the only one bleeding here." Yet, Hubbard's songs--even Airplane Fell Down in Dixie, a tribute to Lynyrd Skynyrd--are about survival and living in grace. The music is top-notch Texas folk-rock, and with backing vocals by Lisa Mednick, Patty Griffin and Troy Young Campbell, it's the sweetest version of Hubbard's harrowing life. Campbell sings just as sweetly on his own Man vs. Beast (M-Ray), and, though his stories come from the same ravaged landscape, his singing and lyrics place him somewhere between early Neil Young and solo Don Henley.
Asleep at the Wheel's Ride With Bob (Dreamworks) is one of the most reverent tribute albums to come along. Guest artists Merle Haggard, Reba McEntire and Dwight Yoakam are among those who pay homage to Texas swing legend Bob Wills without deviating from his unique hybrid of blues, country, Spanish folk and Dixieland jazz framed in a big-band setting. Credit for the project's integrity goes to Wheel bandleader Ray Benson, who snagged three Grammys for 1993's Tribute to the Music of Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys. But the guest artists' passions run even deeper in 1999. All of Reba's roots are showing in a rugged, fiddle-laced traditional take on Right or Wrong, and Lyle Lovett and Shawn Colvin connect on a forlorn duet of the ballad Faded Love. But Haggard steals the show with a feisty rendition of the W.C. Handy standard St. Louis Blues, supported by the Squirrel Nut Zippers' horn section. In 1973, Haggard played with Wills during his final recording session, after which Wills suffered a near-fatal stroke. Ride With Bob is a fitting tribute that swings into the 21st century.
Fans of first-generation American punk, specifically the deeply lamented Dead Boys, should be alerted to The Black Halos (Sub Pop). I was beginning to worry that nobody could bash an electric guitar to my liking anymore, but these guys really know how to make a chord progression roar, snarl and scream with surprising musicality. Are they retro? Yup. Has anybody improved on big amplifiers and bad attitude? Nope. The Black Halos rule.
Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders has been struggling between punk bitch-goddess and vulnerable earth mother since 1986's Get Close. On Viva el Amor (Warner Bros.), her most dynamic album since the Pretenders' debut almost 20 years ago, Hynde finally strikes a balance. When she cries, "I'm only human on the inside," it's apparent that she has learned to be strong without being bitchy, and sensitive without being mawkish. She maintains that balance on the rest of the album, whether she's a lover (in From the Heart Down) or a fighter (as in Baby's Breath). The expressive vocals on the latter, a brilliant put-down of an ex-lover, really pull you in. From the passionate soul whoops of One More Time to the graceful grit of Nails in the Road, Chrissie Hynde shows she's still one tough mother--in the best sense of the word.
Cesaria Evora is from Cape Verde, a group of islands off the west coast of Africa not known for producing international stars. But with this album, recorded in France and Cuba, that will change. Café Atlantico (RCA Victor) highlights the smooth, emotive voice of Evora on 14 compositions sung in Portuguese. There is an easy confidence and a strong, firm timbre to her vocals that make this more than world music exotica. It's a beautiful and compelling bit of artistry. The album's title captures the music of much of the Atlantic, embracing French, Spanish and African traditions and tones. In the process, it evokes the ambience of a bistro where English is the second language, the conversation is lively and the coffee is thick and potent. The vibrant Carnaval de Sāo Vincente, the softly melancholy Paraiso di Atlantico and the torchy Flor di Nha Esperanca are among the many delights to be found on Café Atlantico.
That skinny, Christian, vegan punk-turned-DJ who calls himself Moby has been techno's leading crossover candidate for so long that he's outlasted techno itself. His albums--symphonic and hard-core, soulful and avant-arty--have been brilliant messes. But while Play (V2) is also unfocused, it moves along like a living thing, whether it samples field-recorded blues and gospel from the Alan Lomax archive or deploys Moby's screamed or spoken vocals over electronic funk. Obviously, Moby will have to wait till next time for a hit. But Play is one of those records whose beauty is sufficient to move anybody who just likes music.
Insane Clown Posse aren't just hiphop's answer to Beavis and Butt-head. The Amazing Jeckel Brothers (Island) proves they're better than that. They fuse influences ranging from Ted Nugent's Cat Scratch Fever to Iggy's No Fun to Funkadelic's America Eats Its Young. Which is to say they're shamelessly exploitative, but also a lot smarter than they want any outsider to figure out. "Teacher thinks I got bombs in my locker" is something they would have said regardless of the headlines, and I Stab People is included precisely to attract the censors' righteous wrath. Their masterpiece, Fuck the World, expresses a view as clearly as Born to Run does. Listen up or go fuck yourself, they don't care.
In the wake of the label No Limit's invasion of the pop chart, Louisiana has, for the first time in decades, emerged as a reliable source of commercial African American music. Hard on the heels of Master P's posse is a new force, New Orleans' Cash Money Records. The star of Cash Money is Juvenile, whose Ha was one of the best, most distinctive singles in recent memory. His album 400 Degreez (Cash Money) is surprisingly musical, with a nice balance of live instruments and samples. Juvenile's accents are country, but it doesn't mean his flow is offbeat. Ha was a left field hit and Juvenile's album is an unexpected treat.
Microsoft is pitching its new $75 IntelliMouse Explorer as the successor to the computer mouse, claiming the device's optical sensor and signal processor are more precise and durable than the mouse ball. The problem is that Microsoft hasn't built a better mouse. We tested an early version of IntelliMouse and discovered a few flaws. First, it's awkward to use. Unless you have hands as big as Shaq's, you'll need to lift your palm off the IntelliMouse to reach a button along the left side. What's more, the pointer frequently "hiccuped" when sliding across the screen, similar to a mouse with a grimy ball or rollers. And the gadget stopped working altogether when we used it on our black desktops. A Microsoft spokesperson admitted that the sensor doesn't function on some solid-colored surfaces; it's designed to recognize a pattern or fiber (as in wood grain). But he assured us that the company's engineers will have worked out the bugs by the time the controller reaches stores this fall. Our verdict: The 30-year-old mouse is in no immediate danger of extinction. Hold on to yours--for now.
Although high definition television is a hot topic, there are more-immediate advances headed to the small screen. Worldgate Communications is rolling out a low-cost service that enables cable subscribers to access Internet sites and e-mail through their TVs--at speeds twice as fast as a typical 56kbps modem. Superfast satellite delivery of websites to television is also happening. Echostar has married its receiver technology to Microsoft's WebTV, and DirecTV has a partnership with AOL. Already available on several cable systems and on DirecTV later this year is Wink, a free service that allows broadcasters such as E, ESPN, CNN and Court TV to add interactivity to their programming. Here's how it works: While you're watching Larry King Live, for instance, a Wink icon appears on-screen, signaling the availability of extra information on a subject or guest. To access it, you press a button on the remote and the details appear on your television screen. And finally there's Intertainer, a video bank that provides access to more than 500 hours of movies, television shows and music videos. This digital service is currently being tested in three U.S. markets. Because Intertainer has no pay-per-view schedule, $3.95 buys any new release--at any time. Classic films and other video fare priced between 25 cents and $2.
Sony is moving in the right direction with its Memory Stick. This data-storage format, similar in size to a piece of chewing gum, is designed to replace clunky moving media such as film, tape and discs--essentially working with all the digital gear you own. We've had an early look at a digital still camera that uses Memory Stick, as well as two digital camcorders, a Vaio notebook computer and a superslick LCD video frame. The idea is that after shooting digital photos or home movies, you'll move the Memory Stick to your cyberframe for playback, or to a PC for instant image manipulation, printing or attachment to e-mail, Dictation devices and music players and recorders built around Memory Stick are also coming (the latter are great for storing tunes downloaded from the web). Memory Stick prices range from $30 to $130, depending on capacity. Aiwa, Casio, Fujitsu, Olympus, Sanyo and Sharp have licensed Memory Stick. Sony is the only company with hardware.
As if pro wrestling weren't hilarious enough, we now have the Goldberg Power Fighter video game. OK, so the control buttons are situated (strangely) below the belt. But we're not suggesting that you play with Goldberg on public transportation. In the privacy of your home--with doors bolted and shades drawn--this games is a kick. In a nutshell, you control Goldberg, using the wrestler's signature spear and jackhammer moves to take on seven levels of play. Unlike the real deal, this game has no fake outcomes. If Goldberg wins the WCW belt, it's because you whipped digital butt. Hollywood Hogan, Sting and Diamond Dallas Page variations are also available. ($20 each; by Tiger Electronics.)
Pioneer has followed Apple's lead, candy-coloring its new musiQube microstereo system in three translucent hues--French Bleu, White Mist and Rainbow Rave (pictured). This dorm- and bedroom-friendly audio setup includes two speakers and a cube that combines a top-loading CD player and AM-FM tuner. The latter has 24 station presets and doubles as an alarm clock. The price: $270. For an extra $330, you can add the fuchsia minidisc player and recorder (also pictured). • We also like Panasonic's new KX-TG2550 GigaRange Extreme cordless phone in cobalt blue. This 2.4-gigahertz phone gets eight times the range of a 900 MHz cordless and has rubberized trim designed to take abuse. Features include a message-waiting light (for voice mail subscribers), Caller ID on the handset and a log that stores the names and numbers of the most recently received calls. The price: around $200. It's also available in metallic black and titanium silver.
Oscar Wilde's observation that "the world was my oyster, but I used the wrong fork" is appreciated by anyone sorting out the nuances of dining abroad. In Italy, pouring wine backhanded is thought to bring bad luck; so is refusing to drink when a toast is offered or toasting with water instead of wine. Putting cheese on seafood pasta will cause Italians to snicker, as will requesting a doggie bag in a restaurant. Order a martini in England and you'll get a glass of vermouth. Whiskey is synonymous with Scotch, so be specific. In societies where people eat with their fingers, only the right hand is used. The left, which is considered the bathroom hand, should never touch food. If you're eating with chopsticks, never spear the food or leave the chopsticks sticking up in your rice bowl. To the Chinese, it symbolizes a funeral boat. Slurping noodles is OK, but when they're served as the last dish at a formal Chinese banquet don't finish them. Doing so implies that not enough food has been offered. To request more tea, remove or invert the lid of the pot. Tapping three fingers on the table signals thanks for having your cup refilled. In Japan, passing food from chopsticks to chopsticks invites bad luck. It's perfectly acceptable to eat sushi with your fingers, but never order drinks from the sushi chef--ask your waitress. In Ethiopia, feeding another person morsels of injera (the local bread) is a sign of respect. Refuse the gesture and you'll be considered rude. In traditional Nepali households, meals are eaten in silence, especially if you're seated on the floor. An after-dinner burp is a sign you enjoyed your food. Finally, pay attention to dining hours. For Muscovites, dinner begins about six p.m. In Madrid, nobody dines much before ten.
Known as Canada's "Lotusland" for its temperate climate and historic Chinatown, Vancouver has become the Northwest's hottest destination. Robson, Denman and Davie streets downtown teem with popular shops, cafés, restaurants and clubs, as do the former industrial areas of Yaletown and Granville Island. Start the evening with martinis in the clubby bar of Joe Fortes Seafood and Chop House (777 Thurlow Street). Then head to airy, modern C Restaurant (1600 Howe Street) on the waterfront for an entrée of scallops wrapped in octopus bacon with black truffles and cognac jus, washed down with a fine British Columbian pinot noir. Diva at the Met, the tiered dining room in the Metropolitan Hotel (645 Howe Street), is also a great spot to try local fish. Or hail a cab and head for Kitsilano, a hippie enclave during the Sixties that has morphed into a yuppie neighborhood. Lumière (2551 W. Broadway), a restaurant known for its contemporary French cooking, is the town favorite, but Pastis (2153 W. 4th Avenue), a romantic new bistro, already has a loyal following. Clubs of all types abound, from the Yale (1300 Granville Street), which features live blues, to Sonar (66 Water Street), a techno scene. If you're in the mood for a late-night whiskey and cigar, drop by Gotham (615 Seymour Street). Next morning, head for Sun Sui Wah Seafood Restaurant (3888 Main Street) in Chinatown to sample the city's best dim sum.
It's the challenge of any great beach resort: superior sand and gourmet food. The trouble is, the best food (Mediterranean, for instance) is rarely near a great beach, and the finest Caribbean resorts lack talent in the kitchen. But at the Malliouhana on friendly Anguilla, the sand is the white powdery stuff of fantasy and the cuisine is the creation of the late three-star Michelin chef Jo Rostang, with the kitchen now superintended by his two-star son, Michel. Refugees from trended-out St. Barts love the tranquility of Anguilla, and they like to keep the Malliouhana a secret. Choose from ocean-view rooms, garden terraces and villas with attentive service (two staff personnel for every guest). A private yacht will whisk you to a snorkeling paradise, or enjoy an afternoon snooze by one of three pools and a massage in your room. Dinner may include a Bordeaux from the Malliouhana's 20,000-bottle cellar. Five-night packages (dinner included) start at $3405 per couple.
Riedel's BYO tasting set (pictured below) is the perfect New Year's Eve tote for an oenophile. Inside the padded case are four crystal glasses (two for white wines, and oversize Bordeaux and Burgundy glasses) plus a linen tea towel. Price: $184. • Listen and Live Audio has released two great road cassettes. Tips for the Savvy Traveler by Deborah Burns contains insight on everything from jet lag to customs pitfalls. On The World's Shortest Stories, Steve Moss offers tales of murder, suspense, love and lust, all edited to only 55 words each. Like airline peanuts, try to "eat" just one. The audiobooks are priced at $17 apiece.
Be brave, be bold and walk into the gender studies section of your favorite bookstore. Pick up a copy of Warren Farrell's Women Can't Hear What Men Don't Say (Tarcher/Putnam). Part one (The Secret to Being Loved) is mostly for women and probably won't grab you. But Farrell takes off the gloves for the rest of the book and confronts the false statistics, twisted rhetoric and anti-male prejudices of the past 30 years of feminism. Farrell skewers the continually biased coverage of the gender wars by The New York Times. Every man should read this one and cheer. Also worth cheering for is Cathy Young's well-researched Ceasefire (Free Press), subtitled "Why Women and Men Must Join Forces to Achieve True Equality." Young does a great job of examining the many myths about gender that have been propagated across the political spectrum. She writes of feminism's "blindness to male disadvantage," but also devotes a chapter to what she calls the conservative mistake, showing how the right wing can be paternalistic and condescending to women. Young doesn't write to please any particular group--except those of us who simply want equal treatment for men and women. For original thinking about the changing lives of men, read The Decline of Males (Golden Books) by anthropologist Lionel Tiger. The impact of the birth control pill is at the center of his discourse. "This book is about an emerging pattern of growth in the confidence and power of women and of erosion in the confidence and power of men," Tiger says. All three books help us to better understand the skirmishes so we can defend ourselves.
If you haven't followed the literary journal Libido, you'll want to see Naked Libido (Libido, P.O. Box 146721, Chicago, IL 60614), which contains the best part of the magazine. Photographers Eugene Zakusilo, Trevor Watson and Ralph Steinmeier have different takes on eroticism--humorous, dark and provocative. The subjects are seen around corners, through doorways and windows or pulling out the props, and the voyeur in all of us is aroused. Edited by Marianna Beck, Naked Libido will titillate, excite and even provide a few chuckles.
Susan Faludi, whose 1991 best-seller, Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women, won the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction, has just written Stiffed: The Betrayal of the American Man (Morrow). If Backlash infuriated conservatives and made her one of Rush Limbaugh's chief "feminazis," what will the publication of Stiffed provoke? To find out, we talked with her.
I was a skinny and unfashionable 14-year-old from Chicago when I arrived at an exclusive all-male prep school on the East Coast. As I wolfed down ham and eggs my first morning there, I looked up to find the entire dining room staring at me with contempt. They had expected me to exhibit graciousness and good table manners, and evidently I had disappointed them.
A Whizzer motorbike was the two-wheeler to own just after World War II. Later, in the Fifties, sexy European scooters and motorcycles became the cool way to tool around town, and Whizzer whizzed right out of the bike business. Now the company is back, with a new model that comes only in black. The bike's motor fires up when you pedal a little, and offers motorcycle-type controls, chrome galore and a cruising range of 120 miles per gallon. Top speed? "Twenty-five miles per hour, but you'll feel like you're doing 50," says the company's president, Gene Trobauah. Price: $1995.
Rum hasn't been this popular since it was a daily ration for British sailors. Sales of boutique Caribbean brands are way up as rum makers follow whiskey's lead as a sipping choice. The latest offering is the Rare Rums of the Caribbean Collection -- four dark rums with differing appeal. R.L. Seale's, from Barbados, is a midweight golden rum with an almond flavor ($45). Venezuela's smooth Diplomatico is aged (like cognac) in French white oak barrels ($30). Gran Blasón--known as the cognac of Costa Rica -- is a heavy rum with a distinct molasses flavor ($35). Myers's Legend is a limited edition from one of the world's most prestigious rum makers ($40). It's made the old-fashioned way, in traditional pot stills in Jamaica. The collection is available at better liquor stores.
Great road gear. Toss the Jeep TV Boom-box or the Jeep Emergency Kit (pictured here) into the back of your SUV and never again be without such creature comforts as a four-inch LCD TV, a CD player, a tire inflator or lighter-to-lighter jumper cables. Price for the boombox: about $250; kit: about $100. "A size" cigars. After an absence of several years, Macanudo has reintroduced the Duke of Wellington, an 8 1/2"x47-ring gauge smoke that sells for about $6.50 each, or $84.50 for a box of 13. Dining courses. The Protocol School of Palm Beach offers a business etiquette seminar "tailored for executives who wish to hone their corporate entertaining and dining skills." Everything from silverware savvy to handling accidents at the table is covered. The $225 price includes a fourcourse tutorial luncheon. British cult TV. Boxed sets of Avengers episodes starring Patrick Macnee as John Steed and Diana Rigg as Emma Peel are available from Critics' Choice Video for $29.95 each. Episodes are available from the years 1965, 1966 and 1967.
The Resort at Summerlin is a newly opened luxury golf and spa getaway situated only 25 minutes northwest of the Strip in Las Vegas. Guests at the resort have access to seven courses, including the Tournament Players Club at the Canyons (the site of the Las Vegas Senior Classic). Tee times can be arranged through the Regent Grand Palms hotel. There's also a 40,000-square-foot spa facility, half a dozen restaurants (including Nevada Nick's steakhouse and Parian, which specializes in new American cuisine) and, of course, a casino. Room rates start at $345. (Packages are available.) For views of the hotel, check resortatsummerlin.com.
The star of The Drew Corey Show and Whose Line Is It Anyway? (left) confesses that he doesn't like to dress up, preferring T-shirts and jeans or khakis from the Gap (especially "the one in the Beverly Center in LA, because it's close to my house"). Carey also shops at Banana Republic and Structure. His one exception to casual: "I wear Hickey-Freeman suits on the show. When I went to a black tie and lingerie party at the Playboy Mansion, I wore both to cover myself--a Hickey-Freeman tux over lingerie." What brand? "I don't remember, maybe Maidenform's Cross-My-Balls Bra." Ryan Stiles (left), also of both shows, is six foot five and does his shopping at Nordstrom for Kenneth Cole shoes and Hugo Boss suits, two manufacturers who make large sizes. "I can't just go into a store and say, 'Hey, I like that.' They say: 'OK, we'll special-order it and it will be here in about two to three months.'" Stiles even tried looking in thrift shops around town, but "the ones with clothes from the Fifties and Sixties are no good because there were no men over six feet tall back then."
The best way to cook a lobster is to boil it. The only problem is finding a pot big enough to accommodate the critter. Plunge a one-and-a-half-to two-pound lobster headfirst into rapidly boiling salted water. Cover the pot, and once the water has returned to a boil, cook the lobster for 12 to 15 minutes. Remove it, put it on its back and cut the shell lengthwise. Remove the dark vein, the sac near the head and the spongy tissue. Keep the edible liver and coral. Serve with lemon wedges and melted butter. This is not a meal for neat freaks.
"The American flag is homosexual. What are the predominant colors? Red, white and blue. If you combine red with white you get pink. If you combine red with blue you get purple. Both of these are notorious 'gay' colors. And what is a star but a combination of triangles?"
"The early incarnations of Playboy managed to fuse in-the-know wisdom and a charming, experimental naivete across some beautifully presented pages. It is a blueprint that will always be well worth reinventing and, more crucially, reconsidering."
It's not wise to ask directions from the enemy in wartime. I make the mistake in a Belgrade suburb with a painted-up girl who speaks Italian and pulls up to me in a sharklike Citroën. She offers a proposal. Why don't I leave a message at the home of the world's most notorious war criminal? "It's just up the road," she says, waving a purple fingernail. "You can't miss it. They have good times there." And sure enough, there it is, funded by the proceeds of a decade of ethnic cleansing: a gigantic Greek temple with baby blue pediments topped by a New Age crystal pyramid that is surely bulletproof. A sort of reviewing stand juts out onto the street, where the homeowner can observe his private army on maneuvers.
After two weeks of suspicion, the jealous wife fired her maid. But before leaving, the attractive employee bragged, "Your husband told me I'm a better cook than you are." The wife just shrugged. The maid then added, "I'm also better in bed."
Below is a list of retailers and manufacturers you can contact for information on where to find this month's merchandise. To buy the apparel and equipment shown on pages 29, 30, 35--36, 80--85, 124--125 and 171, check the listings below to find the stores nearest you.
Mia St. John--She's called the knockout, and for good reason. The undefeated featherweight has made boxing a sweet sport. Now she sheds all but her gloves. It's so incredible, we made you wait an extra month