if there is one place in the United States where private styles make up for public images, it is San Francisco, where all lapsed lovers of America, even loyalists like me experiencing spasms of disillusionment, should be taken for refresher courses. The tides of all-American conformity beat vainly against the San Franciscan rock.
As always, there was an all-American war hero look to him, coded in his tousled brown hair, his summer-narrowed hazel eyes, the straight nose that ancient Anglo-Saxons had graciously passed on to him. Everything about him suggested valor and power and a firm handshake.
James Taylor may be an all-American boy but he isn't Horatio Alger, and the lionizing of many rock stars by the rock press has as much to do with old fashioned rags-to-riches stories as does the straight culture's deification of its idols.
Hughes' debut novel, At Dawn, follows a former All-American wrestler, and is there any better metaphor for contemporary American life? We're all wrestling, tussling with the economy, no jobs, doing the best we can. Hughes doesn't flinch from the tough existential questions. He embraces them.
Packed with fascinating personal perspective and testimony, Michael Takiffs A Complicated Man wholly justifies its title. The book is far more than a kaleidoscopic oral biography of President Bill Clinton. Aspect by aspect, it guides us through the struggles of postmodern America, as the most ambitious baby boomer of his generation seeks to modernize the Democratic Party-and, as in a Greek drama, is fated to be destroyed. Veritably, an all-American saga, with a cast of thousands-favorable and unfavorable.
Teachers have been heroes to me, as well as artists and writers, and I'm honored to be among their ranks. There is always a lot of grousing about the academy. I suppose it comes from our all-American anti-authoritarianism.
I enjoy darker sardonic wit more than knock-knock jokes. I spent the first healthy chunk of my career playing all-American, pleasant, average, nice people, so it's fun to have some complications there.