"The writer's life can be a little isolating and a lot maddening," says Simon Dumenco, author of War of the Words, a look at notable—and hate-filled—feuds between seemingly buttoned-down media figures. Tom Wolfe, best-selling author of The Bonfire of the Vanities and A Man in Full, found himself under attack from a group Wolfe calls the Three Stooges: John Irving, John Updike and Norman Mailer. Wolfe knows such feuds aren't new: "There was a famous fistfight between Ernest Hemingway and Max Eastman—and they're both these great big guys," he says. "It was in editor Maxwell Perkins' office. The fight had a great reputation until Perkins' letters were published and he described how these two guys went at each other and after 20 seconds were totally out of breath, collapsed on the floor panting."
Jordan Ladd is earning her wings in Hollywood, and she's hellbent on doing it her own way. Being the daughter of Cheryl Ladd (imprinted on the collective memory in a dripping striped bikini on TV's Charlie's Angels) may have helped Jordan get her foot in the showbiz door, but how she's asserting her independence. "I'm sticking with my own choices and identity," she says. "My mom is not involved with my career." That's not to say Cheryl hasn't been involved in other ways. "No one was less cool than my mother," says Jordan. "She was strict. I was quarantined in my house with a 10 o'clock curfew. I rebelled, but I covered my tracks." As an actress, Jordan tormented Drew Barrymore in Never Been Kissed but declined Drew's offer to appear in the big-screen Charlie's Angels. Catch her next in the thriller Cabin Fever (about a flesh-eating virus that attacks her posse in the woods): "It was the most disgusting script I'd ever read, so I had to be in it." While eschewing favoritism, the 28-year-old is comfortable with her inherited hotness. "When I showed up on a Most Sexy list, I got points with my husband," she says. "I wasn't just the old lady—other boys thought I was attractive. I just want to have a good time. Sex is part of the human experience, and to ignore it is to ignore a part of life."
We spend a lot of time finding ways to hide the Rabbit logo on our covers. But we're no match for this little prick: a divinely formed cactus from the Arizona desert. It's a unique varietal called cactii lapidii—Latin for "this won't hurt a bit." Don't tell our trademark lawyers.
... you're watching Wimbledon. Sampras? Who cares? The ladies' bracket has all the heat. Joining Anna K. is a volley of comely young Russkis who might even win a match: Elena Dementieva, Maria Sharapova, Tatiana Panova and Elena Bovina. Advantage, us.
Rob Reimer and Mikel Addonisio have seen thingies most men only dream about. They are piercers to the stars, paid to probe celebrity body parts normally trusted to physicians and privy to some tight secrets. Reimer is a former owner of Thirteen B.C. in LA. Before he retired, Reimer gained fame for penetrating Anna Nicole Smith (nipple), as well as Janet Jackson (tongue, nipple, nose), who is still a client. "Lots of people pass out when pierced," he says, "but Janet doesn't flinch. She's had piercing parties for her dancers and guests like Lisa Marie Presley." Anna Nicole was also memorable. "She has the world's biggest breasts and I struggled to pierce her nipple. It was stretched out and flat." In New York, Addonisio plugged into the celebrity circuit by fixing Lenny Kravitz' nostril at Andromeda, the parlor he manages. He's pierced Alyssa Milano (ears, navel) and Christina Aguilera. "Christina popped in and had the basics done—ears, navel and nose," he says. "Then I did her nipples. She called again about genital piercings, but she never came in." (Turns out she's also a regular at Thirteen B.C. Says current owner Taj, "I did her nostril, lip and other locations that she has asked me not to talk about.") Addonisio may have missed out on piercing Aguilera's downtown, but he's still proud: "When I saw her Rolling Stone cover I said, 'Those are my nipples!' "
Think you got cojones because you ate that puny worm at the bottom of a mescal bottle? Then point yourself down a rutty dirt road toward Rancho Agua Caliente, Mexico (about 20 miles south of Ensenada) and see if you're hombre enough to handle the bite inside a jar of Tequila con Víbora de Rageoña. That's rattlesnake tequila to you gringos. "Como medicina," says Francisco Dario Garcia, 48, of his home brew—a once-common folk cure that he claims relieves arthritis, cancer, rheumatism and nerves. Enter his dusty old cantina and he'll show you a live specimen coiled and hissing in captivity on the mantel. When the snake's time comes, Garcia sinks the writhing reptile in a two-gallon jar of tequila. After it drowns (and gives off its mythic curative properties), he soaks it again. At that point light and alcohol will have neutralized the venom, and the result is said to have no toxicity. Whether a shot cures what ails you or not is moot, since most imbibers suffer from nothing more severe than a dare from companions. Just don't wuss out and pick out the scales floating on top. "Once many people learned to do this," he says, replacing the tinfoil lid on a nearly empty jar. "Now it's only me."
Compared with the Sex Pistols, today's punk bands might as well be Celine Dion. Now, with a new action figure, Diamond Comic Distributors immortalizes the most self-destructive bassist of all time, Sid Vicious. At eight inches tall, the doll is about as big as the knife Vicious allegedly used to kill his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen. Little Sid is fully articulated at the neck and shoulders but his fingers don't move, which to many fans makes him truly lifelike.
You are not hallucinating. There really is a museum devoted to the perforated blotter paper used to absorb LSD. Curator Mark McLoud has hoarded acid artwork for decades. Now his Institute of Illegal Images in San Francisco holds thousands of tabs bearing classic designs and icons from Janis Joplin to Homer Simpson. McLoud says visitors to his Louvre of lysergic stare at the sacred squares, recalling psychedelic blasts that blew open their doors of perception—or at least made them dance around like sock puppets. We may not know art, but we know what we lick.
Good news: The DA in California's Humboldt County, an area synonymous with pot cultivation, has issued new guidelines that permit residents with medicinal marijuana prescriptions to possess up to 99 pot plants and three pounds of dried buds.
Need something to help eradicate the image of Steve-O's abused nether parts? Check out More Sexy Girls Next Door, a home-video collection featuring scads of uninhibited clips submitted by not-so-average Janes from around the country (Kelly Hayes is pictured). Kitana Baker, the fiesty Miller Lite catfight girl, also gets naughty. We'll drink to that.
We get thousands of e-mails a week at Playboy.com. A note from a less-than-wealthy college kid hoping to surf somewhere other than the Internet this summer got us thinking: When you barely have enough cash to buy a round at the bar, vacationing anywhere but the mall seems like a pipe dream. Before you settle for Cinnabons and shoplifting, check out our list of the world's sexiest yet most inexpensive destinations. And send us a postcard, you cheap bastard.
Remember when Survivor was in Australia a few years ago? Keith Famie, a chef from Michigan, finished third, but that didn't slack his thirst for exotic travel or eating weird cuisine on TV. Keith Famie's Adventures on the Food Network took him all over the world, and now his most exotic culinary discoveries are collected in You Really Haven't Been There Until You've Eaten the Food. The South Pacific, Africa, Mexico and Jamaica are some of the places where Famie has chowed down. Pictured here is Durban spiced shrimp, a South African dish that's jazzed up with coriander, cumin, turmeric and cloves. Serve it to your date with Cape Malay mashed potatoes and a bottle of cold Tusker beer, Mr. International Guy. (Clarkson Potter, $32.50 in bookstores.)
While the technology of war has changed over the decades, one thing remains constant: When our soldiers go overseas, they take part of America with them. In the Vietnam era, GIs carried Playboy in their packs (left) and they flocked to see the Playmates who accompanied USO tours. In both Persian Gulf wars, Operation Playmate reached out to soldiers. Today's coverage brings the war into our living rooms, but it is a more traditional medium—that of the girl next door—that maintains the connection with the home front.
People ask what drug decriminalization would look like. We already know. In 1937 Congress passed the Marijuana Tax Act, which required dealers to affix tax stamps to their product. The Supreme Court overturned the law in 1969, but by one count 17 states have statutes of their own requiring anyone possessing illegal drugs to buy and attach tax stamps. The idea may sound corny (most drug stamps are sold to collectors), but prosecutors insist that it's an effective weapon. Because tax evasion is a civil infraction, authorities have a lesser burden of proof and can seize assets without a court order to pay delinquent taxes and penalties. In Minnesota that amounts to $3.50 per gram of marijuana and $200 per gram of narcotics, plus a 100 percent penalty. In Iowa it's $5 per gram of marijuana, $750 per plant, $250 per gram of narcotics or $400 per 10 doses if the drug isn't sold by weight. North Carolina courts have collected $68 million in fines since 1990 from suspects caught with illegal drugs that hadn't been stamped.
If you haven't been bothered by spam yet, chances are you will be soon. Analysts who have charted the growth of e-mail believe that this year, for the first time, more junk e-mail may be sent than legitimate messages. Earlier this year, America Online reported it had blocked a billion spams in a single day.
We are one of the groups responsible for the report about the dangers of all-terrain vehicles that James R. Petersen dismissed in "Safety Thugs" (The Playboy Forum, April). One of his more egregious errors is his assertion that because ATV sales have increased during the past several years, the injury rate per machine has gone down. While an ATV safety report that was released in January by the Consumer Product Safety Commission accounted for this growth in sales, the report found no decrease in ATV injury rates. In fact, the CPSC reports that between the years 1997 through 2001, injuries per 1000 ATVs increased by 46 percent.
The federal government's spending on abstinence education has grown from $80 million in 2001 to $117 million this year. Yet more than 50 percent of teenagers still have sex by graduation. It's time to get serious about keeping kids chaste. With young lust in bloom, we offer these modest proposals.
Hello, ladies, love your costumes," says the naked hippie guy who greets us. He's staring at my breasts, but I can hardly blame him: My torso is bare and painted gold except for my bronzed nipples and matching armband. "Thank you," I say, looking past his shoulder. "A girl always has to accessorize her nipples." The theme of this evening's party is Shipwrecked. In my body paint, silver leather shorts and black calf boots, I'm like some randy figurehead on a pirate ship. My friend Isabel and I start to make our way through the massive industrial loft in the Dumbo section of Brooklyn. We're bobbing in a sea of sweaty bodies gathered by our hosts, a group of underground artists. Inside a life-size snow globe, a blonde bursting out of a feather corset waves to the crowd. When naked hippie guy tries to maroon us in a corner, we set sail for a new temperate zone—an igloo made of white nylon tent material.
The Fast and the Furious brought the scorched rubber, the g force–induced rush and the adrenaline-addicted beauty queens of illegal street racing to the big screen. There's a glam, street-legal side to underground racing, too: the import scene. Fans and tuners—the guys who modify the cars—define imports narrowly: small and Japanese. Tuners turn Hondas, Mazdas, Mitsubishis, Nissans, Subarus and Toyotas into fire-breathing speed demons with the flamboyant style of Japanese anime. Why ever brake? Girls of street racing are even more impressive. So we revved up cars from the sequel—and stripped down babes from the new import scene.
The first couple of times we had sex, I didn't hear any grunting. It was our third time together, in her apartment, that it hit me—nothing loud or obvious, just a soft, steady, valvelike suspiration floating over the music of Sue Foley. More the sounds of an elderly person trying to sleep than those of an amazing 26-year-old Pilates instructor for whom I was rapidly falling. Her face was muted in the dark—we had yet to do it with the lights on—so I couldn't be sure it was coming from her and I didn't know her well enough to ask. Possibly it was just some wonkety idiosyncrasy with her bed frame. After all, I hadn't heard it when we were at my place, in my bed.
Sticks and stones can break your bones, but bones will eventually knit and heal. Words, in the age of the Internet, are considerably more dangerous, possessing a radioactive half-life longer than strontium 90's. In our Googlefied world, a poison-pen review, a vicious gossip-column slag or a demeaning but funny insult can replicate endlessly, a killer virus in cyberspace.
Two years ago Marketa Janska left her home in the Czech Republic to travel in Europe. Then the 22-year-old received an offer to model in Los Angeles, and we were delighted to learn that she moved into the apartment complex where one of our friends lives. We asked her to meet us by the building's pool rather than at the Mansion, and the minute she approached us it was clear that the casual setting suited her perfectly. Modest Marketa wears no makeup and seems immune from the posturing that often accompanies the "LA model" label.
Faux Joe took a shine to Zora Andrich because she was so different from the other 19 contestants on the hit reality show—including lovely runner-up Sarah Kozar, who graced our pages last issue. While the pack stormed the hot tub in bikinis and dreamed of a life of luxury, winner Zora played it sweet—by her own rules. Fortunately, those rules don't preclude having fun. For proof, look no further than the peekaboo top she donned for this shot. Joe's Freudian slip—"Did you get that breast in Paris?"—really makes sense here. Zora's New Jersey hometown feted her with Zora Day in March. Now we all can celebrate.
You have seen her at the coffee shop—the tasty chick with artfully disheveled hair, retro Puma sneakers and a finely honed look of condescension. Or maybe you spotted her puffing on a French cigarette outside an indie-band concert in a "transitional" part of town. Or flipping through vintage LPs at a vinyl-only record shop. She's a hipster, a sexy mixture of the downtown bohemian, streetwise misfit and all-night party girl. She may drag around a guitar case full of attitude, but underneath that short mod dress or kitschy Iron Maiden T-shirt, she's got a taut little body and no reason to be home before six in the morning. Of course, to get inside the hipster chick's Che Guevara – print panties, you first need to get inside her head.
While the rest of us celebrate our independence with bottle rockets and potato salad, Nikki Schieler Ziering asserts hers with a return to Playboy. When she reigned as Miss September 1997, Nikki was a newlywed, having tied the knot with Beverly Hills 90210 star Ian Ziering on July 4. Now, as she graces this issue's cover, she's awaiting finalization of the couple's divorce. "Legally, I'm already allowed to date!" she informs us.
The axiom "If you can't be fast, then look fast" has never been more attainable—especially with today's streamlined bicycles. Thanks to advances in manipulating and molding aluminum and carbon fiber, the traditional diamond-shaped bicycle frame is being tweaked, squeezed and stretched into exotic and aerodynamic shapes. Combined with continuing improvements in drivetrain, braking and suspension technology, the results are sleek, futuristic mountain, road and city bikes, like those pictured here. They're lighter, tougher, safer, more comfortable and even faster than their predecessors. Or at least they look it. Now do your part and lose a few pounds before you pull on that new skintight Lycra jersey.
Playboy (ISSN 0032-1478), July 2003, volume 50, number 7. Published monthly by Playboy in national and regional editions, Playboy, 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60611. Periodicals postage paid at Chicago, Illinois and at additional mailing offices. Canada Post Canadian Publications Mail Sales Product Agreement No. 40035534. Subscriptions: in the U.S., $29.97 for 12 issues. Postmaster: Send address change to Playboy, P.O. Box 2007, Harlan, Iowa 51537-4007. For subscription-related questions, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Editorial: email@example.com.
Casual Sex 2003— First came the office sex survey, one of our most popular articles ever. Now we're exploring hookups in our special state of promiscuity report. Who's getting laid—and how often? From clubland quickies to dorm room threesomes to whatshername, 10,000 maniacs tell all