Saturday, January 31, 2004
The Wedding Bowl Nearly Empty Because Of XXXVIII
It's an "evil" most women known and dread, which is why those in the wedding business think of the SuperBowl as a major blackout date.
Discovering A New Spin For His Dad's Tall Tales
When Daniel Wallace set out to write his novel "Big Fish," the basis for the movie of the same name, he did not realize how much he was writing about his own father.
Friday, January 30, 2004
Dean Goes Bust
The $40 million war chest is gone — and so is campaign manager Joe Trippi. What happened?
Why is airplane music so universally bad?
Theory In Chaos
Viewing literature through the lens of some "ism" seemed revolutionary in the 1960s. Today, many are calling it an irrelevant approach.
Thursday, January 29, 2004
Elephants Can't Fly
Three big ideas that defied gravity and took flight at last year's World Economic Forum came crashing back to earth this year.
Wednesday, January 28, 2004
Tech & Science
New Yorkers may be able to blame the city's current cold spell — the most severe in nearly a decade — on global warming.
Jack Paar, 85, Former 'Tonight' Show Host, Dies
Mr. Paar's couch became a sounding board for social gossips like Elsa Maxwell and national political figures like Robert Kennedy, Richard M. Nixon and Barry M. Goldwater. It was also a hangout for such witty regular guests as the irascibly neurotic Oscar Levant and the equally fine raconteurs Alexander King, Peter Ustinov and Clement Freud.
Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall. Why Not Bottle It?
Ever tasted a raindrop and wondered, Why doesn't someone bottle this stuff? Well, someone has and called it, aptly, Rain Water.
Tuesday, January 27, 2004
Did the Bush Administration create a new American empire — or weaken the old one?
Building A New Career Is A Snap
Three talented — and lucky — candidates earn dream jobs as Lego master builders in a two-hour, on-the-spot competition.
Monday, January 26, 2004
Education Is No Protection
"Unless you are a plumber, or perhaps a newspaper reporter, or one of these jobs which is geographically situated, you can be anywhere in the world and do just about any job."
Sunday, January 25, 2004
Single And Paying For It
Amid all the heated discussion on both sides of the gay marriage debate, a broader point has somehow gotten lost: why should formally committed couples, straight or gay, enjoy special privileges in the first place?
My Late-Term Abortion
President Bush's attempt to ban partial-birth abortions threatens all late-term procedures. But in my case, everyone said it was the right thing to do — even my Catholic father and Republican father-in-law.
The Soul Of The Old Machine
Hearkening to the poetic song of the typewriter.
Why You Can't Learn To Like It
Several generations have been lost, and the classical music world hopes that education will set young people and their parents right. But what does education mean?
There are few things more difficult than following up a hugely successful first album. So why isn't Norah Jones worried?
Saturday, January 24, 2004
Studying Abroad (In Greenwich Village)
As students from New York University go overseas, counterparts from across the United States take their seats.
Friday, January 23, 2004
One loves Bush, the other gags at the very sight of him — and yet they sleep together every night! Inside the peculiar world of mixed-politics couples.
PCs Killed The Mix-Tape Star
Putting together a home-brewed compilation of songs used to be an act of love and art. Now it's just too damn easy to be worth caring about.
The Grief Industry
How much does crisis counselling help — or hurt?
Wednesday, January 21, 2004
City Streets Provide A Version Of Old-Fashioned Ice Capades
It was one of those days when it was indeed advisable to walk on the sunny side of the street.
A Gastronomic World Within Each
On the Internet, you can find the most exotic, authentic recipes. Need a special ingredient? It's in cyberspace too.
Tuesday, January 20, 2004
Pop Goes The Culture
The last two centuries have been dominated by a debate about the evil effects of popular culture. It's time to move on.
Sunday, January 18, 2004
Exploring The Relation Between THought And Sound
Rock, hip-hop, classical and jazz may not sound alike to your ear, but they do to your brain.
The Restaurateur Who Invented Downtown
Theer is a paradox at the heart of Keith McNallyland.
A Poor Cousin Of The Middle Class
Caroline Payne works hard. She went to college. She even owned a home. So how come she's making only a dollar more per hour than she did nearly 30 years ago?
Friday, January 16, 2004
The Other Down Under
Long neglected, New Zealand is starting to make a mark with its food and wine.
Thursday, January 15, 2004
Tech & Science
Moon Base: NASA's Recurring Dream
So the president wants a moon base. Big deal — the United States has been scheming to build one, with varying degrees of plausibility, since the '50s.
Bringing Up Babes
Why do adoptive parents prefer girls?
Wednesday, January 14, 2004
Rebuilding Iraq Is Not Like Remaking Japan
In Japan, the most important element in the American success was the late Emperor Hirohito, who shaped the Japanese attitude towards the occupation.
Tech & Science
Tests Suggest Scientists Have Found Big Bang Goo
At least three advanced diagnostic tests suggest that an experiment at the Brookhaven National Laboratory has cracked open protons and neutrons like subatomic eggs to create a primordial form of matter that last existed when the universe was roughly one-millionth of a second old, scientists said here on Tuesday.
My Ringtone Symphony
As far as musicians and the concert-going public are concerned, mobile phones and digital watches are unwelcome, obtrusive and have had a rather bad press in recent times. But sometimes their presence can provide something more positive.
Finidng The Universal Laws That Are There, Waiting.
The evidence does not make the law plausible; the law makes the evidence plausible.
Tuesday, January 13, 2004
Tech & Science
The Allure Of An Outpost On The Moon
For some, it is the steppingstone of the Moon, not the distant goal of Mars, that is the irresistible destination in the human venture into space.
Monday, January 12, 2004
The Shushing Of The Symphony
The potentially harmful impact of sheer decibels, many times amplified, on the ears of rock musicians and audiences has received wide attention over recent decades. The problem in the more genteel precincts of the symphony orchestra is less apparent to those outside the profession.
Sunday, January 11, 2004
Perhaps learning how beef is made will drive us back to an older way of rearing cows.
Tech & Science
Sure, It May Look Like Mars
With the Mars rover, Spirit, on the ground and sending back color postcards as beautifully tinted as anything your grandmother received from friends visiting the Grand Canyon, the folks who believe the moon shot was a hoax are once again flaming and thread hammering.
Analog Art In A Digital Age
Thanks to new technologies, fine art is more accessible than ever. But viewers seem to care less about the real thing.
When The Universe Is Expanding It Can Make You Late For Work
I awoke on Friday and because the universe is expanding it took me longer than usual to find my robe.
A Walk On The Wild Side
Disappearing sidewalks, impassable crosswalks, unstoppable traffic, malevolent driving. Does it have to be such a jungle out there?
The most popular computer game in history features sprawling tract homes, rabid consumerism and bickering families. How did The Sims creator Will Wright get it so right?
My So-Called Blog
In the alternate online universe there exists a shawdow suburban high school where confessional girls and emo boys therapeutically reval all. But even the Web can't make being a teenager any easier.
Saturday, January 10, 2004
The Accidental Roommate
A Jack Benny moment: whether to pay extra for travelling alone or room with a stranger.
Friday, January 9, 2004
Tech & Science
Brain May Be Able To Bury Unwanted Memories, Study Shows
Unwanted memories can be driven from awareness, according to a team of researchers who say they have identified a brain circuit that springs into action when people deliberately try to forget something.
Why Good Vibrations Make Opera Nonsense
Three physicists report in Nature today that they tuned into opera and found a perfectly good reason for not being able to hear the words: the louder the song, the greater the resonance frequency of the vocal tract and the more difficult it is to hear a soprano's vowels.
Flavors Fresher Than Sushi
New York is undergoing a crash course in Japanese flavors that goes well beyond sushi and soba.
'Sex And The City' Gives High Style A Leg Up
In its six seasons, the HBO series "Sex and the City" has served as the fashion industry's most successful runway show. It has been able to regularly accomplish what myriad fashion magazines and catwalk presentations only rarely achieve.
Fine Art In A New Light
Exploring the work of masters in popular novels, in movies and onstage.
8 Simple Rules For Dating My Ex-Wife
You are now dating my ex-wife, and her lawyer, my lawyer, and a state judge have all informed me in writing that you have a legal right to do so. So be it.
Five O'Clock Shadow? You're A Marked Man!
In times of terror alert, international travel turns into an endurance marathon — and a financial train wreck.
Thursday, January 8, 2004
Tech & Science
Let There Be L.E.D.'s
What began with Christmas tree lights and under-the-cabinet lights may eventually lead to inexpensive, solid-state lighting systems.
Wednesday, January 7, 2004
The Case Of The Overrated Mystery Novel
Robert Parker, Dennis Lehane, Lawrence Block, Michael Connelly — I've read them all. Amid the logrolling and endless hype, one thing gets obscured: Raymond Chandler and Ross Macdonald did it first, and did it a lot better.
Before There Was Hard Rock...
In the 1920s, L.A. was on the cutting edge of a dining trend. Dinner in a cell, anyone? Out of that hilarity sprang what is now the theme restaurant.
Tuesday, January 6, 2004
Second Thoughts On Free Trade
The question today is whether the case for free trade made two centuries ago is undermined by the changes now evident in the modern global economy.
Restaurant Chains, Too, Watch Their Carbs
Recognizing the size of the trend, nearly every part of the food industry, from manufacturers to restaurant chains, has introduced low-carb products.
Monday, January 5, 2004
The Year Ahead, 20 Years Ago
A look back at the international scene in 1983 and 1984 might give us hope for a better New Year.
If The Bomb Is So Easy To Make, Why Don't More Nations Have It?
Claims that bomb plans can be downloaded from the Internet, or that fissile material is easily obtained on the black market and slapped together into an ultimate weapon, seem little more than talk-radio jabber.
Sunday, January 4, 2004
Global Must-See TV
Telenovelas, Spanish-language melodramas from south of the border, are the ultimate crossover phenomenon. Their addictive formula — a woman's agonizing struggle ending in redemption — attracts 2 billion viewers worldwide.
Fitter Than Thou
For a growing number of apparently sane adults, running a marathon just isn't enough of a challenge anymore.
She Speaks 3-Year-Old
Anne Wood created "Teletubbies," one of the most profitable children's shows ever. Now she has made an exercise show for kids who haven't yet learned to tie their shoes.
When Dad Runs For President
In most families, it's the children who dream of what they might someday become, while the parents devote their every hour to making it happen. In a political family, those roles are reversed.
Friday, January 2, 2004
What A Year It Was. Or Is. Or Will Be.
Keeping up with all the retrospectives can be inordinately time-consuming. And a year later, you have to do it all over again. For the new year, why not get this chore out of the way now, especially since much of what qualifies as news is predictable?
Books As Art Objects (Reading Is Optional)
"Can books, without much explanation, without being read even, say something?"
Thursday, January 1, 2004
Tech & Science
The Time We Thought We Knew
The more physicists have searched for definitive answers, the more our everyday conception of time appears illusory.
Capturing The Spirit Of 1776, With A Different Number
The Freedom Tower, the tallest of the planned trade center skyscrapers, is routinely described as a 1,776-foot design. However, achieving that number may prove elusive.