May 5, 2004
Cinco de Mayo, a huge deal here, but not so in most parts of Mexico. How weird is that? Front page of the paper this morning shows hispanics dominating tv, preferring Velo de Novia instead of Days of Our Lives, and Despierta America over Good Morning America. This after they have turned the radio dial upside down (my former radio gig at Young Buck Country was sold and converted to Spanish and has done well ever since). Maybe we should have put Pancho Villa on the cover last September.
And speaking of Pancho, Bart Bull gave me a book on the selected short stories of O. Henry and I am reading the Cisco Kid story right now. Funny, the master of the short story wrote it in 1904, one hundred years ago, and yet, the story and atmosphere of the Southwest is as fresh as if it was written five minutes ago. Proves the old adage that literature is news that stays news, or something like that.
Daniel H. came out yesterday for a design review. Dan, Gus, Abby and Robert R. joined me for lunch at El Encanto (machaca and eggs, iced tea, $11 cash). We critiqued the new issue, wrestling with design problems, strengths and weaknesses. We also addressed the eighties-in-flight-magazine accusation. Good debate and ideas.
Dan came back to the offices and tweaked the Tap Duncan Diamond Bar eight-page-spread, putting in Gus’ great map of Mohave County, 1912, replete with train tracks to Chloride (gone since my childhood). Unfortunately, because of weak ad sales, we are going to hold this piece until the next issue (August), when we can give it full coverage and glory.
The Alamo is dead in the water at $21 million and looks to be a total bomb. Robert Ray was going to go see it this weekend, but it’s only playing on the fringes of the Valley (second house waystations on the way to theatre extinction). Allen Barra wrote a great piece in our next issue about why the movie failed. He nails the guilty and on several counts I plead guilty. By the way, 88% of you said you planned to see the movie and 59% of you said you preferred the John Wayne version. Meanwhile, Hidalgo is doing somewhat better at $96 million (it will probably earn back it’s production costs).
“It is the nature of the artist to mind excessively what is said about him. Literature is strewn with the wreckage of men who have minded beyond reason the opinions of others.”
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