Tuesday, August 25, 2009

No One Hundred Per Cent Heroes

From Paul Levine...

NOTES ON ENTOURAGE: In my opinion, movie star Vincent Chase is the least interesting character on "Entourage." Honcho writer Doug Ellin must think so, too. Vince gets the least screen time of the ensemble. Another observation. Why do we love Ari, the foul-mouthed, loutish, misogynistic, homophobic, obnoxious Hollywood agent? One word, "loyalty." He will do anything for his client, Vince. He'll try to do a deal at Yom Kippur services. God may not like it, but Ari's client will. And...he's good at what he does. Very good.

Ask the same question of the Edie Falco character, "Nurse Jackie." She's a drug addict who cheats on her husband, lies to her co-workers, and essentially leads a deceptive double life. But she's a VERY GOOD and caring nurse. She saves lives. She takes no shit from young, arrogant doctors. We love her, despite her flaws. Hell, we might love her more because of her flaws.

One of my favorite lines from John D. MacDonald might be useful here. It's the opening sentence of "Cinnamon Skin."

"There are no 100 per cent heroes."

To which I can only add...except Jim Born.

LOCK & LOAD: People who carry guns to President Obama's town meetings are exercising their Second Amendment right to bear arms and their God-given right to act like total dipshits. (Please note this item has nothing to do with Jim, above in his skinny T. He's not at a town meeting; he's guarding Santa's warehouse, filled with toys for bad little boys and girls).

THIS IS FOR MOTHERS: My daughter, Wendy Sachs, author of "How She Really Does It," opines on Huffington Post, with a blog item entitled "The Recession Has Killed the Mommy Wars:":

Maybe there's one piece of good news to come out of the recession - it's killed The Mommy Wars. With the unemployment rate hovering at nine and a half percent, having a job feels like a privilege not a choice. The irony is that while for years moms were "opting out" of the workforce as New York Times reporter Lisa Belkin famously observed in her 2003 magazine cover story, today, moms who want to opt back in, cannot.

TO DIE FOR: Chocolate. Sugar. Pecans. Bourbon. My pal Janet Rudolph's recipe for "bourbon balls" is on her Dying for Chocolate Blog. I'm already counting the days (47) until the Los Angeles Luxury Chocolate Salon, an all-you-can eat extravaganza.

I HATE WHOLE FOODS: The Whole Foods market in Beverly Hills has lousy (and overpriced) fruit. Foolishly missed the Farmers' Market Sunday and bought peaches that turned out to be mealy, strawberries that went bad in one day, and oranges that were bitter. Some people call the place "Whole Paycheck." They charge more than $6 for an identical yogurt that Trader Joe's sells for $2.99. More than double, also, for frozen cherries and raspberries.

STOP BY FOR DINNER: I am, belatedly, learning to cook. Last week's highlight, pork tenderloin in a Port/Grand Marnier reduction with fresh cherries and caraway seeds. Also, a key lime pie that Joe's Stone Crab would be proud to serve. If the next book doesn't sell, I'm gonna ask Wolfgang for a job.

HEARD IN PHILADELPHIA: "Hide your beagle; Vick's an Eagle."

Paul Levine


  1. People who carry guns to President Obama's town meetings are exercising their Second Amendment right to bear arms and their God-given right to act like total dipshits.

    Quote of the Day.

  2. James O. Born8/25/2009 5:30 AM

    My hero, Chris Matthews crushed a gun prpponent claiming it was okay to bring guns to the events. The gun lobby needs better spokes people. I'm not opposed to guns but there are limits. Just as there are in free speech. You can't yell fire in a movie theater is the one I always hear.

    In Entourage, Ari is also loyal to his assistant LLoyd. he may berate him but in one episode he first uses him as a ploy to attract a TV writer then rescues him, ruining the whole deal, at the end of the episode.

    Great post, Paul.


  3. My theory on Ari, aside from the loyalty, is he's the guy we would all like to be in a business deal. I'm way too nice.

    I started learning to cook when I was in college. I was on the GI Bill which meant I had no money. But after living in the company of men for three years, I also had a powerful hunger for female company.

    I discovered that women consider a man in the kitchen sexy.

    I never did learn how to make a good dessert. Somehow, it never came up.

  4. On Saturday I tried to buy Julia Child's MASTERING THE ART OF FRENCH COOKING. I live by her book THE WAY TO COOK and thought I'd branch out after seeing Julie & Julia. Both volumes were totally sold out!!!! Julia once said if you can read you can cook. So far that's worked for me.

    Did anybody buy Vick's smurky "What I did was wrong but now I've found Jesus" routine?

  5. Denver needs a Trader Joe's. Safeway just doesn't cut it.

  6. There are rumors afoot that Trader Joe's is about to move into Florida, starting in Ft. Lauderdale. For Jim Born (Mr. Chocolate Bon-Bon), I surely hope so.