Tagged: adam gopnik

Online Gambling

If you enter the phrases “betting on” and “stock market” in the Google search function, .12 seconds later you’ll be furnished with 322,000 Web page matches.  Nearly every state in our great union — except for Hawaii and Utah — oversees some form of gambling, including State Lotteries, which serve as a regressive tax and...

Great Writing

Relatives sometimes discover a book that brings them so much enjoyment that they want to share the experience with everyone they meet. That’s cool. Unfortunately for me, most of the books they like, despite glowing accolades from literary critics such as Oprah Winfrey’s intern and the editors at Vogue, are painfully difficult to read, since I...

Wine, Awards, and Telling the Truth

Not until I started working with a handful of foreign-born musical artists was I aware of the honorific “multi-awarded” — as in, “the recipient of numerous awards.” Good singers (or actors, or authors, or whatever) get an award. Really good ones are “multi-awarded.” The more awards, the better the artist. It’s pretty easy to follow. ...

In Print

Mr. Russ Stanton, the Editor of the Los Angeles Times, the largest news-gathering organization west of the Mississippi and my home-town newspaper, delivered an extraordinary message in the Sunday edition. What he wrote — that the future of the Times, in print and online, rests on its ability to deliver news and information that is “unique,...

Getting There

Ford announced that they’ll stop manufacturing their biggest cars and will delay the release of their new F-Series truck.  The Metropolitan Transit Authority in Los Angeles announced that last week’s ridership on the commuter rail was the highest they’ve ever recorded. Gasoline prices eclipsed $4.50 at many stations around the city. United Airlines is raising...

Tigran

For the past couple of years, musician friends of mine have been telling me about an Armenian pianist who they believe is, variously, “a freak,” “a genius,” and “the next Keith Jarrett.” Since almost nobody but the disgraced Cultural Elite know who Jarrett is, despite his nearly mythic status among jazzheads, being the next him...

The Gas Tax Holiday

Desperate to curry favor with short-attention span voters, both John McCain and Hilary Clinton have proposed plans for a “gas tax holiday” this summer, when Americans drive most. The explicit reason for such a plan, which is gaining popularity among Congressman facing reelection challenges, is to give consumers “a break” while the economy is poor...

Alcohol Versus Cannabis

Everyone has a friend like Tony. He’s the guy who is really cool when he’s straight. He works hard running a small company. He’s a great single dad to his precocious son. He’s funny. He’s smart. He’s a pleasure to be around during the day. At night, however, he likes to drink. Mostly beer, though...

Protesting Business As Usual

The normally jovial and celebratory Olympic Torch Relay, a mostly symbolic journey meant to link the entire planet in the joy of quasi-amateur athletics, has been transformed into a kind of Keystone Kops fiasco, without the comedy. In London and Paris, pro-Tibet demonstrators were so civilly disobedient that the riot police had to be summoned...

The Internet: A Safe Haven for Cowards

A beloved 1990s Peter Steiner New Yorker cartoon now adorning countless refrigerators depicts a cute canine seated in front of a computer terminal, where he says, “On the Internet, no one knows you’re a dog.”  As we’ve learned in the ensuing decades, on the Internet no one knows if you’re a man, woman, adult, child, Nigerian con...