I've never been an Anna Sui type, but these brilliant kilt-front shorts converted me for Spring 2013.
I've never been an Anna Sui type, but these brilliant kilt-front shorts converted me for Spring 2013.
Associated Press October 5, 2011 01:00 PM Copyright Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Arch West, a Frito-Lay executive and the genius inventor of Doritos, has died. He was 97.
West, who died last week in Dallas, came up with the idea behind Doritos when he was on a family vacation in Southern California, according to an obituary in the Washington Post. In 1966, the original crunchy, triangular corn chips were released nationally. Doritos became one of Frito-Lay's bestselling snack foods, still true today.
West's family plans to pay tribute to his love for the snack with what seems like a fitting goodbye by tossing Doritos into his grave at his memorial service Saturday.
-- Caitlin Keller
THE teenage girl wearing jean shorts and a bikini top sunbathing at Long Beach, N.Y., on a recent hazy Saturday found her friends hilarious — if you’re willing to take her word for it.
“LOL,” she said, over and over again, without ever actually laughing. “LOL!”
Many acronyms meant to be written have wormed their way into spoken language — just ask your BFF, or the co-worker who prefaces everything with “FYI.” Lately, this is also the case for Internet slang.
First developed about 20 years ago to streamline conversation on chat platforms like Usenet and IRC and popularized on AOL instant messenger and Gmail chat, terms like LOL (laugh out loud), OMG (oh my God) and BTW (by the way) now seem to be popping up in real life (IRL).
Some would prefer it to stop. Larry David, chronicler of modern irritants, scolded a friend’s wife on a recent episode of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” for constantly saying LOL rather than laughing.
“If you’re going to ‘laugh out loud,’ why aren’t you laughing out loud?” he pleaded. “Why say it? Why not just laugh?” (To amplify the gag, the mirthless character was played by Maggie Wheeler, whose braying cackle was a running joke on “Friends.”)
Many a Facebook group has been formed to decry the habit, like “Stop Saying LOL in Real Life, You Sound Like an Idiot.” A video on Funny or Die explores what happens when a man reacts to a friend’s joke by saying “ROFL” (rolling on the floor laughing) at a party. (Hint: It ends in violence.) And on a recent episode of NBC’s “Parks and Recreation,” Rob Lowe’s unflappably positive character exclaimed “OMG” from the backseat of a car moments before the driver decided to drown him out with banjo music.
Typically, the letters are spoken: it’s “oh em gee,” not “ahmguh.” Some people pronounce LOL to rhyme with bowl, but they seem to be in the minority and risk adding confusion to their list of social fouls. Others go so far as to verbalize emoticons: “smiley face!”
The road from Usenet to cocktail party chatter was largely paved by texting, said David Crystal, a noted linguist based in northern Wales. After all, Internet abbreviations had been part of techie jargon for years before anyone thought to weave them into conversation. That only began to happen once text messaging became a part of daily life.
The U.C.L.A. Slang Dictionary, a compendium published every four years of the newest language on that campus, first included an entry for LOL as a spoken word in the 2005 edition. But Pamela Munro, the editor of the dictionary, said the practice didn’t really take off until a few years after that. She has since heard students pronounce everything from “JK” for “just kidding” to “IDK” for “I don’t know.”
Whether the practice will leave a permanent mark on the language remains to be seen. But it would hardly be the first time an acronym has become so commonplace we forgot it wasn’t an actual word. Americans probably know AWOL is a military term, but how many know that it stands for “absent without leave”? Celebrities and editors enjoyed plenty of “swag” at New York Fashion Week — perhaps not understanding it means “stuff we all get.” And one’s enjoyment of a Nascar race is hardly diminished if you do not know it stands for the National Association of Stock Car Auto Racing.
SINCE her death in 1962, Marilyn Monroe, whom Norman Mailer called the American man’s “sweet angel of sex,” has never wandered far from popular imagination or the souvenir shop. Yet with the 50th anniversary of Ms. Monroe’s mysterious death approaching, her image is experiencing something of a cultural moment, even by ageless icon standards.
Monroe’s new ubiquity is partly by design. In December, Authentic Brands Group, which is based in New York, acquired exclusive rights to Monroe’s likeness, image and estate. This summer, the group consolidated those rights with several photographic portfolios, including Mr. Bernard’s, along with rights to products like a Marilyn Monroe line of Nova Wines, lingerie by Dreamwear and merchandise by the skateboard company Alien Workshop.
“You don’t have 52 Marilyn Monroes out there from a packaging standpoint, you have one,” said Jamie Salter, the company’s chief executive, who said his goal was, in part, to take Monroe’s image upscale.
With that prerogative, the company has been free to license new Monroe-themed products and campaigns, starting with a Christian Dior ad campaign featuring Charlize Theron, who encounters Marilyn in a dressing room, that had its debut during the Emmys broadcast. Other projects in the works, Mr. Salter said, include a Dolce & Gabbana line due in spring; an expanded Marilyn Monroe line of Gerard Darel apparel as well as Marilyn footwear, handbags and cosmetics; two television series; and possibly film roles played by a digitally ersatz Monroe.
The moment is nothing if not ripe, as evidenced at the recent Emmy Awards, the showpiece of an industry scrambling to replicate the crisp, early 1960s elegance of “Mad Men.” Tracey Moulton, a Los Angeles-based stylist, said she felt compelled to dress Julia Stiles in classic Hollywood fashion for the Emmys. “My first instinct was to do something that really accentuated her body, that was super elegant and simple and highlighted her femininity,” she said of the long, form-fitting, gossamer gown from Georges Hobeika Couture that she chose for her.
But does such a widespread presence risk diminishing Monroe’s value and allure? Michael Levine, the author of several books on branding, whose Los Angeles-based public relations company has represented celebrities like Michael Jackson, David Bowie and Cameron Diaz, thought it was “a very good idea” to go broad, as Mr. Salter is doing. “The world today requires that a brand be hyper-present to break through the onslaught of data smog,” he said. “Out of sight out of mind has never been more true than today.”
Here, kitty, kitty. The biggest trend in fall makeup is the fully lined, feline eye.
Sexy kittens stalked plenty of fall runways, but the fiercest felines of all were found at Roberto Cavalli (below left) and Mugler (below right). According to Val Garland, who did the makeup at Mugler, all you need is a great black pencil or fab liquid liner to try this look at home. For soft-focus bedroom eyes, she suggests using Estée Lauder Artist’s Eye Pencil in soft black. Smudge gently with a finger for desired depth and use a Q-tip to coax color into the lash line. For a more precise line, try a liquid product like M.A.C. Penultimate or Lancôme’s Artliner. “They’re fast and to the point,” she says. “A thick angular line from start to finish is very vixen.” François Nars, founder and creative director of Nars, gave models a downturned line at Marc Jacobs. “We were going for a ‘Man Ray in 1920s Paris’ feel,” he says. “It was deliberate but not pristine.” He used his new Nars Larger Than Life Long-Wear Eyeliner in Via Veneto and built it up, following the shape of the eye. “The outer corner was blunt and squared off, and I added black shadow to make it feel worn in and a bit broken.”
A vending machine in Paris spits out hot baguettes 24/7. (Michel Euler / Associated Press)
August 12, 2011, 11:44 a.m.
As a Midwestern child, I often spent Friday nights and Saturday mornings at ugly folding tables in musty church basements blissfully stuffing myself with the delicacies of the Midwest: chili, pancakes and piles of spaghetti. These spaghetti dinners and pancake breakfasts were about gathering as a community to support important, local organizations like Rotary and the fire department, and pies or sides of bacon were the happy by-products. Such dinners were cheap and fun, and we ate everything without irony. We ate pancakes with maple syrup-soaked bacon because the combination tasted good and one just dripped onto the other, not because bacon on top of everything was considered campy haute cuisine.
Not once was a bowl of chili dished up on a picnic table set with mismatched porcelain, jam jars spilling forth with black-eyed Susans and pitchers of homemade, minted pink lemonade. We did not eat in the middle of fields, and I am from rural Ohio. The farmers that we knew did not gather at long tables, feasting family-style on goat cheese-sprinkled roasted beets from their fields as today's magazines suggest. I never heard someone tuck into a green salad and comment, "The sherry vinaigrette perfectly complements the piquant raddichio!" So, when I had this very conversation over dinner not so long ago I wondered: "When did we become such food snobs?"
August 3, 2011, 9:30 pm
A Russian acquaintance of mine who grew up in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, recently told me that her father microwaved his orange juice. Her grandmother also used to heat her ice cream in a saucepan on the stove. She remembers once asking her grandmother why it was even called “ice” cream, when by all rights it should be called warm cream, or maybe hot cream. “Things have all kinds of crazy names,” her grandmother snapped back. “How should I know?”
If you were born in the Soviet Union and are of a certain age, ice is your enemy. As the daughter of émigrés from Ukraine, I was raised on room-temperature beverages and always associated ice with a raft of great American stuff other kids were allowed to have but I wasn’t: puppies, sheet cake, fun. My own grandmother would cringe from a glass of ice water as if it were a syringe of Ebola virus. To this day I have no idea what disease she associated with the consumption of cold liquids. Pneumonia? Athlete’s foot? Chlamydia?
As the daughter of émigrés from Ukraine, I was raised on room-temperature beverages and always associated ice with a raft of great American stuff other kids were allowed to have but I wasn’t: puppies, sheet cake, fun.
Why do Russians hate ice? I called my dad and posed the question.
“Ice? I don’t hate ice,” he began. “It’s just that when these Americans hand you a can from the freezer, and it is already so cold that just touching it practically turns your hand into a claw, I don’t really see the need to add ice.”
Yeah, I thought to myself, you don’t hate ice. You just think the cold war was a literal attempt to freeze you. I quickly abandoned this line of inquiry and decided to take my investigation to the streets instead. What better place than Brighton Beach on one of the hottest weekends of the year?
To maximize my chances of getting any Russian over the age of 50 to talk to me, I put on a dress and more makeup than I thought I owned. But then I sort of handicapped myself by inviting my friend Amanda, who long ago shaved her eyebrows off and replaced them with black squiggles that look like Arabic writing. She tried hiding them behind sunglasses and a straw hat, but they peeped out insidiously nonetheless.
The air out on Brighton Beach Avenue hit us like a plume of dragon breath as we quickly made our way toward our first destination, a cafe. Although the heat outside was an Ecuadorean 101, it must have been at least 85 degrees inside as well. The wings of moths could have turned the air faster than the air-conditioner. Perfect, in other words, for our purposes.
Unlike the Russian restaurants on the boardwalk, the cafe was free of day-tripping tourists. A television mounted to the wall blared the Eurovision Song Contest, and talk at every table was reliably in Russian. We watched as a burly man in a red tank top poured a can of Coke into an ice-free glass. At a table near the front of the cafe, a dozen Russian men rose to make a toast and knocked back drinks that were assuredly not on the rocks. A pair of women next to us prodded their juices and we failed to hear a telltale clink. Meanwhile, I ordered us a selection of starch-based dishes, vareniki with potatoes, blintzes with cottage cheese, and — here was the test — two glasses of water. Moments later, they arrived. Sans ice.
“A mozhno eto s l’dom?” (Can we have it with ice?) I asked in Russian.
The waitress gave me a look of pity.
“We don’t have any ice,” she said.
“You can’t even buy it,” Amanda whispered, impressed. “It’s not for sale.”
Later, I asked one of the waitresses, why the no-ice policy.
“Over in Ukraine, they put ice in their drinks,” she explained. “But not in Russia.”
“Really? My family’s from Ukraine, and they don’t use ice.”
“Well then I guess we all don’t use ice.”
“Yes,” I persevered, “but why?”
“That’s just how it’s always been,” she shrugged.
This circular logic, though undoubtedly true, left me unsatisfied. So having filled our caloric quota for the week, we hit the streets again. A Chechen named Ahmed, whom we chatted up in an antiques store, insisted that Russians kept ice out of their drinks as a precaution. “Who knows where that ice came from? It’s probably dirty.” A Russian woman filling out a lottery ticket down the street concurred. “Unlike other nationalities, Russians are very clever. You can’t fool us,” she warned.
I had never considered this theory before, that ice was a riddle whose origin demanded to be solved, a potential form of drink pollution. It’s true that the tap water in many Russian cities, like St. Petersburg, can contain giardia and other contaminants. But New York City is known for having some of the cleanest drinking water in the world. I rejected this hypothesis. My gut told me that even if I made ice out of San Pellegrino before their very eyes, these Slavs would keep clinging to their tepid drinks.
At Oksamit Liquor, we found ourselves admiring a glass Kalashnikov full of vodka. I posed my ice question to the guy behind the counter, but a beefy man buying some whiskey interjected.
“Ice dilutes your drink,” he said, waving his bottle. “I put ice in it? It’s not as strong.”
“O.K.,” I said, “but then why don’t Russians use ice in their water?”
And on the shoals of this tricky question, our conversation stalled.
Back home, I decided my Siberian friends, with their heroic tolerance for cold, might help me gain some clarity on Russian ice aversion.
“We’re already surrounded by ice for most of the year,” my friend Vanya, who lives in Novosibirsk, replied via e-mail. Ice in his drink? “Thank you, but no.”
My friend Konst, a Siberian who recently relocated to Los Angeles, seconded this argument with the addition of an intriguing coda: “Or it could be that we have bad teeth.”
Moving west, a long soliloquy on the subject was provided by my cousin Kolya, from the also frigid city of St. Petersburg. He explained that although Soviet citizens did have the means to make ice (most Soviet-produced fridges came with “ugly aluminum devices included to prepare ice cubes,” he reminded me), Russian drinks weren’t customarily amenable to it. Most Westerners would agree, he argued, that beer, wine and vodka don’t go with ice. He also pointed out that in the years before, and immediately following, glasnost, Russia did not have a cocktail-mixing tradition. I was almost convinced, but then his cogent analysis veered abruptly toward conjecture: “Traditional Russian cold beverages, like kvass and mors,” he continued, “also do not require ice.”
Well, nothing really requires ice, does it? Ice — like most of the drinks it enlivens — is optional. And having drunk my share of lukewarm mors, a sweet berry-based concoction, on a hot summer day, I can say without reservation: a little ice wouldn’t hurt.
But in what might be construed as a sign of cultural global warming, my friend Sarah, a former New Yorker who has lived in Russia for over 20 years, relayed the following anecdote. Two 20-something couples, one American, one Russian, were sharing a meal at a Starlite Diner in Moscow when Sarah overheard the male of the Russian pair order a drink, emphasizing to the waitress that he wanted it “s l’dom.” It was a weighted gesture that seemed to signify a new kind of worldliness. Perhaps the new generation has learned that, love it or hate it, one thing is always true about ice — it’ll help you stay cool.
Considering the countless licked-clean pints of Jeni's ice cream we've stared down, we thought we were intimately familiar with the Ohio-based ice cream maker's spectrum of flavors.
But when we received her new cookbook ($24; click here to buy), we saw that there was an unexpected ingredient acting as the foundation for each delicious recipe: cheese. Specifically, cream cheese. Indeed, the secret to the trademark silkiness of Jeni Britton Bauer's ice cream is a spoonful of the schmear in lieu of eggs. Present in favorites such as roasted strawberry with buttermilk (click here to see the recipe), cheese might be the savior for our frozen desserts.
Apparently, we're not the only ones to join the faith. In New York, Il Laboratorio del Gelato features several cheese-focused flavors, including a sharp cheddar flavor, which is at once sweet and salty. The ice cream pioneers at San Francisco's Humphry Slocombe prepare an offering called "government cheese," which they recommend eating atop an apple tart.
At Empire Ice Cream in Seattle, scoops toe the line between dinner and dessert with offerings such as the "Heart Attack," which combines blue cheese, bacon and extra rich cream. And in Illinois, Village Creamery takes a page from a Filipino custom of adding pieces of Kraft singles to vanilla ice cream.
The cone now defers to the curd.