David Kinney photographed by Marjan Osman Gartland.
He not busy being born is busy dying.
The answer is blowing in the wind.
Everybody must get stoned.
If you know who wrote these words, you’re probably a music fan of a certain age. If you’ve thought about them for any length of time, you’re a well-versed one.
If you know every printed and recorded variant of these words, every concert in which they’ve been sung, every cover band that’s ever essayed them, you’re a Dylanologist.
A Dylanologist—a student ...
Roz Chast photographed by Bill Franzen.
The thing about caring for her aging parents that most surprised Roz Chast was everything.
“I didn’t know anything about elder lawyers, I didn’t know about hospice. I didn’t know whether they had a will. I didn’t know how to start these conversations. I felt like I was just making it up in a sort of incompetent way as I went along,” says Chast, the New Yorker cartoonist. “As I said to somebody recently, it’s not like they have ...
Evan Osnos photographed by Peter Marovich.
There’s an old Chinese adage: “If you’ve been in China for a day, you feel you can write a book. For a month, you feel you can write an article. For a year, you feel like you can’t write anything at all, because you start to realize how much you don’t know,” says Evan Osnos, author of Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China.
Osnos, a New Yorker staff writer, lived in Beijing for ...
Ava Chin photographed by Owen Brunette.
As a native of Queens, New York, the first time I heard the phrase “urban foraging,” I pictured dandelions peeking out from a parking meter, subject to truck exhaust and the whimsy of dogs, winding up on someone’s dinner plate. In other words, Fuhggedaboutit!
But you won’t find Ava Chin, author of Eating Wildly: Foraging for Life, Love and the Perfect Meal, diving for what’s described either. “I don’t eat every single plant that I see walking along the ...
Sam Kean photographed by Voss Studio.
Every once in a while, even a writer specializing in strange science comes across something too weird to believe. That's what happened to Washington, D.C.-based writer Sam Kean when he read about an injury to the temporal lobe of the brain that, in one case, caused a very specific sort of brain damage: After contracting herpes, the patient was no longer able to distinguish one animal from another. Cats, dogs, elephants—they all looked exactly the same. "It ...
Richard Williams photographed by the Williams family.
If you've ever wondered about the origin story for Richard Williams, the proud, driven father of tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams, Black and White: The Way I See It is almost completely satisfying. Written with Bart Davis, the memoir charts the elder Williams' humble beginnings to his current international fame as a 71-year-old irascible tennis coach.
Like all celebrity memoirs, his story at once reinforces that he is just like the rest of us while also showing that ...
George Prochnik photographed by Elisabeth Prochnik.
“To be frank, I think his world had vanished long before he entered it.” So, at the close of Wes Anderson’s new film The Grand Budapest Hotel, says Mr. Moustafa, the mysterious hotelier, of his mentor, the harried but unbowed concierge without whom the place would fall to pieces.
The sentiment subtly echoes the title of the memoir, The World of Yesterday, written by the man whom Anderson cites as the inspiration for his film. Born in 1881 in ...
Earl Swift photographed by Saylor Denney.
“More often than not, we pick our cars with our hearts—not for their utility, or their economy, or their reliability, or their safety, but for the way they look and how good we’ll look behind the wheel,” writes Earl Swift in Auto Biography: A Classic Car, An Outlaw Motorhead, and 57 Years of The American Dream.
In this automotive romance wrapped around a single car and its 13 owners, reason isn’t a factor. For most of the owners, it’s ...