VEGA$ON US So there I was on stage, dirty-dancing with Toni Braxton. At her invitation I gave her a little spank. “Now it’s my turn,” she said, and beckoned me to stick out my behind. I did. She slapped it. The audience roared. And that’s the moment I decided to try to stop hating Las Vegas. . .
WHAT IT MEANS TO MISS NEW ORLEANS All week we've been watching the immersion of a great old city. We
imagine another city, less peculiar, will arise in its place. But I
have this feeling it will never be quite the same nontoxic gumbo again.
For outsiders New Orleans was a place to party and eat food that is way
too rich. For the folks who live there it's more complicated - it's
home. Eighty-five percent of them were born there, and they're not
going anywhere permanently, so forget this idea they're going to move
the city somewhere else. It's not going to happen.....
DISASTER TOURISM Oct. 14, 2005 | When Anderson Cooper announced he was leaving New
Orleans, I knew it was time for me to come. How could I stay in New
York without Anderson's stand-ups from the French Quarter to get me
through the night? For the millions who now count ourselves exiles of
New Orleans, Cooper's nightly display of outrage on CNN was a balm, a
ministration, a prime-time expression of the disaster still ongoing in
our hearts: heartache and anger and grief for the people who died, for
the beloved city in ruins, the pitiful specter of destroyed lives and
homes and businesses, the ruination of hundreds of thousands of people
and all of their stuff....
COSTA RICA, PURA VIDA The first time I landed in Costa Rica, I stepped off the plane and stood around in the musty airport at San Jose, feeling doubtful, waiting for the customs guy to stamp my passport. Everywhere were signs welcoming me to “El Jardin de Paz,” and indeed it was all that Garden-of-Peace propaganda and Costa Rica’s reputation as “The Switzerland of Central America” that made me want to see the place for myself. . . .