Newswire

Newswire

  • Polo On Less Than $5 A Day

    Equestrian polo-the kind Prince Charles always seems to be recuperating from-is definitely no sport for the '90s. It's male dominated, it uses defenseless animals, and then there's the matter of the expense. "This is not just a millionaire's game," polo enthusiasts are always saying, and of course they're correct; a lot of billionaires play, too. The cost of buying and maintaining a string of horses can easily exceed $30,000 a year. And that's at the Cincinnati Polo Club, where one can never have the ultimate experience-that is, to actually be on the field when Charles gets whacked by a mallet, bonked by a ball or dumped by one of his extravagantly inbred steeds. How much more sense it makes to play bicycle polo. About all a body needs is one of those sturdy $600 mountain bikes and a willingness to abide by the rules drawn up by Trice Hufnagel and her husband, Lou Gonzalez, the Marie and Pierre Curie of the fledgling game. That, and a $10 membership in the World Bicycle Polo...
  • The New Giant On The Block

    For nearly a decade, the two behemoths have faced each other across Park Avenue, colossal rivals in the intensely competitive New York banking market. From Chemical Banking Corp's headquarters on the east side of Park, employees can actually stare into the offices of their counterparts at Manufacturers Hanover Corp. Now, the wary neighbors are set to come together under one roof. In the biggest bank merger in U.S. history, "Manny Hanny" and Chemical will combine to create a new institution, known as Chemical Banking Corp. With assets of $135 billion, it will be America's second largest bank after Citicorp. Manny Hanny chairman John McGillicuddy will end up with a leaner, meaner institution: he called the marriage of the nation's sixth and ninth largest banks "a superb strategic fit." ...
  • A Maine Chance For Act-Up

    Labor Day weekend in the Bush vacation hometown of Kennebunkport, Maine, usually means tourists munching on lobster. Not this year: ACT-UP, the militant AIDS activist group, plans to stage a massive rally in the town on Sept. 1 to protest what they see as a lack of presidential action against the disease. Expecting more than 3,000 to attend the rally, ACT-UP leaders-in contrast to their radical image are already holding calm talks with the Secret Service about the protest. Says ACT-UP spokesman Ioannis Mookis: "As long as they know you're not going to shoot the president, they will deal with you in the most civil way."
  • Inside The Head Of The Hacker

    On Nov. 2, 1989, thousands of computers around the nation got very sick. Machines tied to the "Internet" network at universities, companies and the military were all struck by a "worm"-a program that burrows from system to system, leaving copies of itself in each infected machine. The programmer apparently had innocuous intentions but botched the job: he unwittingly ordered his brainchild to deluge computers on the network with commands, slowing each to a standstill.By the next day, John Markoff, a reporter for The New York Times, had already gotten the hacker's name: Robert Tappan Morris. Markoff knew no more until a top computer expert for the National Security Agency returned a call. The source, Bob Morris, confirmed that one Robert Tappan Morris had written the worm. "Isn't that a funny coincidence," said Markoff. "You both have the same name.""That's no coincidence," Morris replied. "He's my son."Markoff's story was the first of a journalistic flood. But for all the ink spilled...
  • Will Bush Lean On Shamir?

    President Bush has always been careful to keep his distance from the Middle East peace process. As his secretary of state, James Baker, shuttled back and forth this spring trying to persuade Arab and Jew to sit down and talk, Bush liked to quip, "We call it the Baker plan. When it starts getting somewhere, we'll call it the Bush plan." The president's skepticism was pardonable; in the 12 fruitless years since the Camp David accords, the history of the Middle East peace process has been a tortuous and meandering path to nowhere. ...
  • Let's Shake On It

    Remember when the world held its breath at every twist and turn in the arms-control dickering between the superpowers? Even as recently as the late '70s and early '80s, studded by such tense moments as the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the shootdown of Korean Air Lines Flight 007 and the U.S. installation of cruise missiles in Europe, there was still widespread concern about the danger of a nuclear confrontation. "The Day After," a made-for-TV movie about a nuclear attack on a Kansas university town, was a major event in 1983. U.S./U.S.S.R. NUCLEAR FREEZE bumper stickers were all but standard equipment on Volvos in Cambridge and Berkeley. Politicians sought to capitalize on the Zeitgeist. And in 1986 at Reykjavik even Ronald Reagan felt it was his historic destiny to offer to get rid of all ballistic missiles on both sides. ...
  • Ready To Rumble (If Not To Run)

    Would-be Democratic presidential candidates are still shying away from the starting line-but they're busy talking up their readiness to get rough in the '92 campaign. Their role model: GOP attack master Roger Ailes. Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin says he'll hit the president "right back between the eyes" if the Republicans make racial quotas a campaign issue. Tennessee Sen. Al Gore vows-if he runs-to "rip the lungs out" of any foe. And Gov. Bill Clinton (who is waiting only until Arkansas voters release him from his promise not to run says he'll make the race a "contact sport." Some Democrats worry that the candidates will try to prove their toughness by attacking one another. "W form a Democratic firing squad-in a circle," says one party insider.
  • London Summit Edition

    Even with Gorby there, the London summit was a veddy unremarkable affair-except for lots of wind blowing, which the CW regarded as metaphorically appropriate. PLAYERS CONVENTIONAL WISDOM G. Bush Mistaken for "Geoffrey," but the G-7 is still his favorite country club. F. Mitterrand So arrogant, he insists on always being the last to enter a room. Chill, Frank. J. Major So bland, he's still overshadowed by Thatcher. Have a brandy or something. H. Kohl Last year's Herr Big Mann has been cut down to size by reunification problems. M. Gorbachev Stiffed, but so charming that his empty tin cup looked filled with champagne. The queen After D.C. podium fiasco, she one-upped Bush on seating protocol. Royal flush.
  • One Year Later

    Kuwait can't stop replaying the gulf war. Hotel lobbies in Kuwait City screen dawn-to-dusk newsreels of the fighting. One luxury lodging house promotes what must be the world's most dangerous sightseeing trip-to the burning oilfields. The management at the International Hotel warned tourists recently that one visitor "lost both his legs" in a mine explosion and then "the ambulance turned over three times and he also broke his neck." The tour is still popular. ...
  • Bringing It All Back Home

    The English love landscapes, from the intimately homey to the grandly forbidding. The old lady with the shawl and trowel adores her frowzy garden and in the vanished days of the empire-the pulse of the explorer quickened at the sight of a desert floor. No accident that England's two greatest painters, Constable and Turner, were landscapists. And no coincidence that its most arresting contemporary artist, Richard Long, 46, is even more enamored of the earth. "I felt art had barely recognized the natural landscapes which cover this planet," he writes, "or had used the experiences those places could offer." ...
  • Screeninig For Pet Projects

    Not since the days of Aesop, or at least Mr. Ed, have so many animals had so much to say. Everyone's pet project in Hollywood these days features a talking dog or cat. "Bingo!" opens this month, starring Cindy Williams and a mixed collie who takes to the road after his family leaves him behind. At the end of the year you'll see "Beethoven," a Saint Bernard who takes over the lives of a suburban family. Geena Davis and Woody HarreIson have committed to "Me and My Boy," about a single woman whose dog has better judgment about men than she does. Warner Bros. is developing at least three animal opuses: "Breakfast With Spaulding" ( canine version of "Look Who s Talking"), "Ophelia" (a cat that turns into a woman) and "Dog Spell" (a child turns into a ... you guessed it). Universal is working on a remake of Dick Powell's "You Never Can Tell," about a dead dog coming back as a private eye.
  • Hoping Against Hope

    This is a story about anguish, hope and longing--and what may be an unspeakably cruel hoax. It began in 1966 and led, last week, to the public release of a blurry photograph of three middle-aged men standing in a wooded setting. One of them, the man in the middle, holds a cryptic sign marked with what may be a date: May 25,1990. The man on the left seems to be U.S. Air Force Col. John Leighton Robertson, missing over North Vietnam since Sept. 16, 1966. The man in the middle looks like Air Force Maj. Albro Lynn Lundy Jr., missing over Laos since Dec. 24, 1970. The man on the right resembles U.S. Navy Lt. Larry James Stevens, missing over Laos since Feb. 14, 1969. Because of the photograph, the families of the three men are utterly convinced that Robertson, Lundy and Stevens are alive and in captivity somewhere in Southeast Asia. ...
  • The Sincerest Flattery

    It was the best of times, and pretty much the worst of times. I felt borne back ceaselessly to the past. Maybe that's because days on the calendar creep along in a petty pace, and all our yesterdays but light fools the road to dusty death. ...
  • A Slippery Pyramid?

    Scott Plachter moved his wife and three kids to Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., from New York City last September in search of a new career and a better life. Things haven't worked out so far. He wound up spending $7,800 on skin creams, shampoo, hair formula, weight-loss powder and promotional materials. Most of the salves and gunks remain stockpiled in his bedroom because his neighborhood has been "inundated" by distributors. "I've had people run away from me," he says. "I feel like such an idiot now." ...
  • All The Things You Aren't

    A terrible affliction is sweeping the opera world: the Bo Jackson Syndrome. More and more singers are trying to be double threats as crooners of arias and show tunes--Kiri Te Kanawa, for instance, has been Eliza Doolittle, and Jessye Norman does Porter and Gershwin. Someone will get hurt--and this time, it's probably the hapless purchaser of "Hollywood Golden Classics," starring Jose Carreras. Posed on the cover like an ersatz Paul Henreid in "Now, Voyager," the tenor looks ill at ease and no wonder. He's probably worried about truth-in-labeling laws. Even in Hollywood, the broadest definition of "classic" cannot embrace "You Light Up My Life," "Born Free" and "For Your Eyes Only." ...
  • The Democrats' Mr. Right

    The Democrats' search for a 1992 nominee has a funereal air--and why not, considering that dead Whig Zachary Taylor gets more respect than most live Democrats. Recent polls put George Bush far ahead of any foe. But Democrats shouldn't despair. They do have the candidate material to beat the president. It's just not in the body of one person. Here are the qualities needed to challenge the president, and a contender who can stake a claim to each. What it adds up to is a composite sketch of a missing person--a plausible, Democratic Mr. Right: ...
  • The Intermarrying Kind

    The Weinstein family is not your typical Jewish household. But then it's not your typical Roman Catholic household, either. Peter, a technical writer in Berkeley, Calif., prepares a Shabbat meal of salmon loaf in his kosher kitchen. He and son, Ben, 16, light the candles and sing the blessings for the wine and challah. Then his wife, Mary, a librarian, and their daughter, Kate, say grace. Ben, a convert, has been circumcised, bar mitzvahed and--like his father--is an observant Jew. Kate, 12, was baptized a Roman Catholic like her mother, hears mass weekly and attends a Catholic school. What makes the Weinstein family special is not the parents' intermarriage but the fact that the children are being raised with very definite--and very different--religious commitments. ...
  • Rags To Rubles

    Just as "born in a log cabin" is a staple of U.S. political resumes, Soviet officials like to play up their humble roots--with a proletarian spin. Their bios boast credentials such as "blast-furnace operator" and "father spent 10 years in labor camps under Stalin," according to the new guide, "A Biographical Directory of 100 Leading Soviet Officials," by Westview Press. Selections: Pres., U.S.S.R.PeasantMoscow State Univ.; Stavropol Agricultural InstituteMachine-tractor station, 1946-50Sec., Communist Party Central CommitteePeasant1960 graduate of I.V. Michurin Fruit and Vegetable InstituteCollective farm worker, 1955-57Deputy chair, U.S.S.R. Council of MinistersPeasantMoscow Textile Inst.; Dolukhaev Soil Inst.First Printed Fabric Works, Moscow, 1954-59First deputy minister of DefenseBlue collarAttended Far Eastern Tank School, 1959Boiler-maker, Pacific merchant fleet
  • Chaos At The Stereo Store

    So you've finally decided: it's time to toss in that circa-1975 stereo and the dusty collection of Dan Fogelberg records. You want a sleek new compact-disc player. But wait. Before you plunk down $599 for a deluxe 5-CD, 20-track random-access disc changer, consider some alternatives. How about a digital audiotape deck (DAT)? Or hold off till next summer, when two more wholly incompatible formats hit the market: Mini Disc recorder-players (MDs) and digital compact cassette machines (DCCs). CDs, MDs, DCCs or DATs--got it? On second thought, the old stereo sounds pretty good... ...
  • Rockefeller: Getting Closer

    The Democrats may soon have their second 1992 presidential candidate. West Virginia Sen. John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV and his family have been meeting quietly in recent weeks at their farm in Pocahontas County to discuss their responsibilities if, as expected, he enters the race. A key decision: what Rockefeller's wife, Sharon, will do about her job as president of WETA-TV, the Washington-area public broadcasting station. Sources close to her say that rather than resign, she'll take a "leave of absence" during her husband's campaign.