During a 2010 deposition, a lawyer and an IT professional got into a discussion about what is a photocopier. This Op-Doc from Brett Weiner depicts the discussion verbatim, with dramatic flair. It is brilliant.
In this short film, I sought to creatively reinterpret the original events. (I’ve not been able to locate any original video recordings, so I’m unsure how closely my actors’ appearance and delivery resembles the original participants.) My primary rule was the performance had to be verbatim — no words could be modified or changed from the original legal transcripts. Nor did I internally edit the document to compress time. What you see is, word for word, an excerpt from what the record shows to have actually unfolded. However, I did give the actors creative range to craft their performances. As such, this is a hybrid of documentary and fiction. We’ve taken creative liberties in the staging and performance to imbue the material with our own perspectives.
Ben Schott does the best NYTimes Op-Arts, thought I think his previous entries had actual art… In any case, here are a whole bunch of NY cocktail bars sharing slang that’s either unique to them, or common in the world of bartending. My favorite is “Boomerang”.
A specially prepared drink that is sealed (say with plastic wrap or a rubber glove) and dispatched as a gift to a nearby bar. Of dubious legality, Boomerangs are a way of “having a drink” with industry friends during work. Boomerangs are often shuttled from bar to bar by regulars, who are thereby identified as guests of quality.
If you’re not one of the Americans that care passionately about guns, you’d think Dick Metcalf was a gun nut. He’s got a gun club at his house, a shooting range, and gun manufacturers used to send him their weapons for review. He also had a popular column in Guns & Ammo magazine, from which he was fired after suggesting, that maybe, quite possibly, all rights, even the Second Amendment, should be regulated. “All constitutional rights are regulated, always have been, and need to be” was the line that got Metcalf fired, drew death threats, and caused two major advertisers, Ruger and Remington, to threaten to pull their ads. You can read Metcalf’s column here. (PDF)
On the other side of that reasonable statement is Richard Venola, “We are locked in a struggle with powerful forces in this country who will do anything to destroy the Second Amendment. The time for ceding some rational points is gone.” Venola recently had murder charges dropped against him after shooting a neighbor during an argument.
In any case, we’re all screwed. More guns isn’t the answer, and these people are insane, or, I guess if I’m being charitable, unreasonable.
If you’re a fan of the ‘lost at sea’ #longread (AND I KNOW YOU ARE), you’ll like Paul Tough’s latest in the NYTimes Magazine. Last July, Montauk fisherman John Aldridge fell overboard into the Atlantic Ocean while the rest of the guys on his lobster boat were asleep. These stories are always gripping, but I think this is the best in a while.
In the weeks after Aldridge’s rescue, I talked to several local fishermen on the docks about the search, and not only did they all admit that they cried when they heard the news that Aldridge was safe, but most of them teared up again, despite themselves, as they were telling me the story. It was hard to say what, exactly, was bringing them to tears. But what seems to go mostly unspoken in their lives is the inescapable risk of their jobs, and the improbable fact that Aldridge hadn’t drowned in the Atlantic somehow underscored that risk for them even more. He’d kept himself alive in a way that few people could, had managed to think and work his way through a situation that, for most of us, would have been immediately and completely overwhelming. And he’d willed himself to live. To be a fisherman and to really know the danger of the sea, and to think of Aldridge in the middle of the ocean for all those hours refusing to go under — maybe that was too much to contain.
La Quercia is an American producer of Prosciutto, a traditional Italian cured meat. It’s a remarkable product and if you see it somewhere you should buy it. They were recently profiled in the NY Times, which makes sense because of how good their Prosciutto is. What is strange, however, is practically the same article was written 4 years ago. In the NY Times. It’s cool. I like reading about them.
For years, he imagined making good food in Iowa. “It was clear that we had this incredible bounty around us, but we weren’t known for creating great stuff to eat,” he told me, stretching his rangy frame at his dining room table. (Clearly things have changed: his wife, Kathy, was serving us apple pie whose heartbreaking crust was made with lard rendered from acorn-fed organic Berkshire pigs, their latest project.) “At the beginning of the 20th century, Iowa fed people. And here we are in the 21st century, and we’re feeding machines. It’s just a priori wrong.” He continued: “People were saying, ‘Iowa’s dying, and there’s no value added here.’ At that point I was thinking, Gosh, I wonder if we can make prosciutto in Iowa.”
The Eckhouses developed their taste for the thinly sliced, richly marbled cured ham during the 3 1/2 years they lived in Parma, Italy, where Mr. Eckhouse was the chief executive of the Italian subsidiary of what was then known as Pioneer Hi-Bred International, the seed company in Des Moines. They lived an Italian life, sent their children to Italian preschools and ate prosciutto two or three times a week. “We didn’t learn anything about making it, but we learned about eating it,” Mr. Eckhouse said.
When they returned to Iowa in 1989, they were struck by the beauty of the landscape, with crops “bursting out of the ground and the rich black soil,” he said. “You think: ‘This is amazing. What are we making here that we can be proud of? What are we making that shows that we really appreciate this bounty?’ ”
“A lot of critics think Iâ€™m stupid because my sentences are so simple and my method is so direct: they think these are defects. No the point is to write as much as you know as quickly as possible.” – Kurt Vonnegut
There’s a Kurt Vonnegut just out and this quote was in the review of it. I liked it.
via And So It Goes
Do you think this quotation:
“Heroes like Bernie Kerik, Rudy Giuliani, and, yes, George W. Bush raced to cash in on the horror. And then the attack was used to justify an unrelated war.”
Has a different meaning than this one:
“Fake heroes like Bernie Kerik, Rudy Giuliani, and, yes, George W. Bush raced to cash in on the horror. And then the attack was used to justify an unrelated war.”
NPR posted about Donald Rumsfeld’s response to a Paul Krugman column about 9/11. For some reason, they left out the word ‘fake’ when highlighting the column. When I read the NPR piece, I noted to myself that Krugman called Kerik, Bush, and Giuliani heroes, which seemed weird. But he didn’t. Why would NPR leave out that word, slightly changing the meaning of the quotation? What angle does that even push?