Wednesday, March 17, 2010

A Few Things We Couldn't Help Noticing

The Next Big Things: home tests for sperm count (gentlemen, drop your drawers). After that: using brain scans to help sell you things. A brave new world, isn't it?

Gender Balance. Not long ago, we brought you word of some memorable movie dresses. So for some gender balance, GQ mag takes a look at its 50 most stylish Hollywood leading men. Favorites, anyone?

One Hundred Places...In Italy every woman should go. Do drop us a postcard if you're there, will you?

Do Me a Favor, If You Would. Someone sent me this academic site from Penn State about language development and related topics. I haven't spent enough time on it to tell if it's worth adding to my list of places to occasionally graze. So I'm up for your suggestions on that.

Gone But Not Forgotten. Someone compiled their list of favorite out-of-print books, which got me to thinking: which would I add to that list? None came to mind immediately. You?

Obnoxious Commercial Pitchwomen. I can't decide (do you notice a theme here? I'm just damn undecisive lately) where Flo, the chipper character in all those Progressive Insurance ads, fits on my list of commercial pitch people I'd just as soon do without ever seeing again. The thought of appearing in a commercial with her left me a tad cold. On the other hand, when it comes to obnoxiousness, she's got quite a ways to go before she could ever compete with those jilted cave men that are somehow supposed to make me want to do business with Geico Insurance. That wins my vote, hands down, for dumbest ad campaign in history. All the brain scans in the world couldn't change my mind about that one.

Finally, We End on a High Note...With this look back at an important moment in Abe Lincoln's career. Even at 201 years of age, old Abe still somehow always manages to raise our spirits.


At 10:53 AM, Blogger Kass said...

A few things I couldn't help noticing: Too many adverts in the list of stylish men - and where was Clark Gable?

Paul Newman, Cary Grant, George Clooney and Gene Kelly were my favs.

At 11:14 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

You gotta be kidding me. Since I didn't page through the entire thing, I didn't even notice Gable was missing. That's absurd. I think it's a case of anti-Ohio bias! (he was from a small town in Ohio).

At 1:05 PM, Blogger Art Durkee said...

Out of print books? I'd rather look for those than for well-dressed men. (Well UN-dressed men is another story, of course.) Here's a short list off the top of my head.

Anything by Eric Frank Russell; a collected works ought to be done someday. An SF writer who explored the possibilities of alternative cultures based, for example, Gandhi's ideas, on genuine anarchism, on the Jeffersonian social contract.

"The Adjusted American (Normal Neuroses)" by Gail and Snell Putney. One of the best analyses ever written, including both psychological and historical insights, about how the social mainstream "normal" is not only stifling, it's deeply neurotic.

Saul Bellow, "Dangling Man." His first novel left a big impact on me when I read it in high school. Both an existential and personal novel, it's like a much darker "Catcher in the Rye," if Camus had written that book instead of Salinger.

Jose Arg├╝elles, "The Transformative Vision." Art history, mythos, and psychology syncretized into an overview of human consciousness seen through the lens of human expression. The chapter on the invention of photography is worth the price of admission all by itself; but there's so much more in here.

At 2:46 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I knew at least you'd have some great ideas on this subject, Art. Gotta say I'm pretty surprised that any book by Saul Bellow, a Nobel laureate, would be out of print.

At 2:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is funny that Lincoln was not on the GQ list.

I would like to read what they would have to say if he were:

"Yes, Abe was a rugged outdoorsman who tamed his earnest disheveled early look into the wizened brooding man. Later, he sported the stovepipe hat, dark cravat, and slimming dark suit that emphasized his tall, thin silouette." As though anyone would preusme to think that dressing like the man would even elevate a player into his league.

Each man was listed with some tiny sketch of what made him in some way timeless.

I cannot speak for all women, but I can tell you that it was almost pitiful to see GQ discussing what the men wore. It was as though they assumed discussing their fashions gave their readers a plausable way to imitate those they wished to emulate.

And being imressed by men like Gary Cooper or Jimmy Stewart or William Holden was a combination of the role and the man. Moved not to lust, but to admiration. It was a combination of the roles they played and what they brought to the character that gave it life that moves me; those things are timeless.

About the Tolstoy quote:

What? I don't get it. That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard.

- just kidding.

At 9:58 PM, Blogger Jenny said...

Gone but not forgotten - the book that came to mind is Walking through the Fire by Laurel Lee.

At 6:07 AM, Anonymous Article Obedience said...

Beautiful piece of work. Of course an useful post. Thanks.


Post a Comment

<< Home